5 Ways To Apply Force Quit Apps For Non-Responsive Application

Have you ever tried to close a program in Microsoft Windows but tapping or clicking on that big X doesn’t do the work?

Sometimes you will get lucky and Windows will tell you that a program isn’t responding and give you some options to like End Now or Close the program, or even maybe to Wait for the program to respond. On the other hand, if all you get is a Not Responding message in the program’s title bar and a full-screen that is greyed-out, making it clear that the program is not going to open any time soon.

If you are looking for different ways to force quit apps on windows then keep reading the article.

How to Force Quit Apps on Windows?

Below are some of the methods through which you can force quit apps on your system.

1. Wait for the Windows to Terminate a Non-Responsive App

When an app stops responding on Windows, you need to give it a few seconds. If the app is entirely unresponsive, Windows has this feature of responding automatically by giving the app the chance to recover. You will notice a not responding tag appear in the app window title on your screen, which indicates that Windows is beginning the countdown to terminate the unresponsive app.

Even though there isn’t a fixed time for Windows to do this, but it will usually try to resolve a problem with an unresponsive app within a few seconds. This could mean closing the app automatically in case the app crashes completely or if it takes longer than usual to respond or there is a chance that the app can recover, Windows system will let you decide the next steps.

This can include options like to force quit and restart the app, or close it and leave it closed, or allow the app more time to recover itself. You may go with the latter option if the app is using a lot of system memory and you are pretty confident that, after a certain time, it’ll surely recover.

Once you have made your choice, Windows will follow through with your decision. If you opt to force quit the app on Windows and it still does not respond, you’ll be required to take more drastic measures.

force quit apps using keyboard

2. Use Your Keyboard

Before you run into other methods to force quit an app, such as through the Task Manager, you should give your keyboard a try. Windows includes several keyboard shortcuts to help you quickly perform several system tasks, like closing a running program.

One keyboard shortcut you go on with a combination of Alt + F4. This combination of the keyword shortcut instructs Windows to try and terminate the currently active window. If you go with this keyboard command and the app still does not respond, the measures listed in the section above should activate the app which gives you the option to restart, force quit, or give more time to the app.

3. Force Quit an App Using the Task Manager

In the Windows Task Manager each program, app, or even system service will appear that is running. You can also view system resource usage for each running app, thus helping you to resolve apps issue that isn’t responding. 

For example, if an app reaches 100% CPU usage it would indicate that it’s probably running too hard for your PC hardware to handle or maintain. You would be surprised to know that Task Manager isn’t just for information but you can also use it to force-quit apps that aren’t responding.

To do so, right-click on the Taskbar and then select the Task Manager option.

Locate the app you’re looking to force close in the Task Manager window. Right-click on it, then select to End Task to force it to quit. This should close the app immediately but, if it does not, repeat the entire process.

4. Force Quit an App Using a Powershell Terminal

The Task Manager is indeed the best way to force quit an quit when it stops responding completely, but there are other alternatives for the problem. If you know about Windows PowerShell terminal, you can use it to force quit apps on Windows computer using the task kill command. If you prefer you can also use the old Windows command line to run this command.

To launch a PowerShell terminal on the system, right-click on the Start menu and then select the Windows PowerShell (Admin) option.

 Type tasklist to view a list of all running processes in the PowerShell terminal window. You are supposed to locate the app by matching it to its executable filename (for example, yourphone.exe or conhost.exe).

Once you have found the app name in the list,  you need to type taskkill /im process.exe, replacing the process.exe with the executable filename of the app you are looking to force quit (for example, the taskkill /im notepad.exe). 

The task kill command would force quit the app, except for some of the protected Windows services. If it does, a success message would appear in the terminal window to confirm. Otherwise, you will need to repeat the entire process to force quit the app.

5. Using Third-Party Apps to Force Quit Apps

Just like the methods shown above, Windows has included plenty of ways to force quitting apps. If you want to quickly force quit the app then you will need to look for third-party solutions.

One of the best, simplest and quickest third-party apps for this purpose is SuperF4. This app has a simple motive of allowing you to quickly force any app to immediately close using a keyboard shortcut of Ctrl + Alt + F4. 

This replicates shortcut the effect of the taskkill command that is used in the PowerShell terminal, thus making it a stronger command to use compared to the Alt-F4 keyboard command included in Windows.

To use the third-party solutions of SuperF4 you need to download and install it first (or you can download and unzip the portable version of the app instead). Once it is installed, run the SuperF4 app or the SuperF4.exe file in the portable directory to begin the process.

The SuperF4 runs in the background, but you can check whether that it’s running by checking the system tray icons on the taskbar. If you want it the program run automatically, right-click on the SuperF4 tray icon, then choose Options > Autostart. 

SuperF4 does not run with admin access by default on the system. If this is disabled on the computer, SuperF4 will not have any rights to force all apps (especially some necessary system apps) to quit. If you wish to give it this option, right-click on the SuperF4 tray icon, then you need to select Elevate. To enable this program automatically, choose the Options > Elevate on autostart afterwards.

If you want to force-quit an app using SuperF4, make sure the app window is active on the system. With the window been active, press the Ctrl + ALT + F4 combination on your keyboard to force the app to quit.

Fixing Non-Responsive Windows Apps

Now you know how to force quit apps on Windows, you should be able to quickly fix issues with non-responsive apps shortly. Most apps would quit automatically, but if Windows does not shut them down, you can use the methods mentioned above like Task Manager, PowerShell, or a third-party app like SuperF4 to deal with the problem instead. We believe we have provided solutions to your query ‘Force Quit Apps’ on windows.

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