3 Ways to Kill / Stop Hung, Non-Responding Applications or Processes Faster

Some applications or processes will not respond at times. If you’re the impatient type and can’t be troubled with the wait while Windows shuts down errant applications, there are two ways out for you to end the execution of those applications or stop the processes– either make Windows shut down hung processes automatically, or reduce the time that Windows waits for before killing it.

Here are 3 simple ways to do it..

Kill Apps Faster I

  • To shut down applications automatically, open the registry editor (Start > Run, type “regedit” and press [Enter])
  • Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop.
  • In the right hand pane, double-click “AutoEndTasks” and change the Value Data to 1 to enable automatic app kills.
  • To disable the feature, change the Value Data back to “0”.

Note: Keep in mind that if you want to apply this tweak, Windows might end up killing critical services
before they have time to recover themselves, increasing the possibility of a system crash.

Kill Apps Faster II

The second option is to reduce the time Windows waits for before showing you the “End Program” dialog box. Follow the instructions above to get to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop and double click on “HungAppTimeout” and change the value data to the time (in milliseconds) you’re willing to wait for an unresponsive application.

If you find applications that take too long to close when Windows is shutting down, you can also set the time that Windows will wait for before killing it. You’ll find this value under “WaitToKillAppTimeout” in the same pane.

Kill Apps Faster III

If you want to change the time that Windows waits before killing a system service when shutting down, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control and double-click on “WaitToKillServiceTimeout” and enter a more acceptable value than the default 20000 milliseconds.

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