Windows explorer.exe is acting up: Preventing folders from being deleted, and wont refresh.



Lately, Windows explorer.exe has been being weird. It prevents me from deleting folders. I can't tell which folders exactly, it's happening in libraries/music, and also in /pictures. It doesn't do it if I create a file, then try to delete it, only existing folders. It's been kind of hard to debug.

I've been having another issue where if I create a new folder, or move a file, it wont refresh immediately. I have to hit F5. When I delete the explorer.exe process in the task manager, then restart it, it usually fixes that problem, but only for a few minutes then it starts happening again. The preventing me from deleting files happens regardless.

I know it's explorer.exe preventing me, because I use the program "Unlocker", and it says explorer.exe is using the folder, so I unlock it, try again, it wont delete still, so I have to delete it via unlocker. I don't think it's happening to any files, just folders.

Overall, explorer.exe has just been acting up. I just started noticing it heavily today, so I'm not sure what I did that could of caused it. It's been making it very tedious to clean up my computer.

Also I just noticed, that I now can't unpin or pin icons to my taskbar. The buttons simply don't do anything.

Is there any way I can simply download a fresh "explorer.exe" file and replace it, or is the problem deeper than that?

Thanks ahead.


Nov 11, 2012
Sadly you can't just download a new explorer.exe (or actually you probably could download one of some shady site, not adviseable)
Can't comment on whats gone wrong, and why IE is locking up your folders like that.

Tho if you really want you PC running, maybe you should think about a reinstall.
It could be a virus. From another pc I would make a anti virus rescue cd. Avast and avg and other have free iOS cd images. I would make the cd and boot from it to make sure your system is clean. I would also run malware sweep with malware bytes.



It's not IE, internet explorer, it's explorer.exe. The windows process. I would reinstall, but I have ~150 programs on here, loads of music production software that would take me days and days to get back up and running.

I've done scans with Microsoft Security Essentials, but got nothing. I think a virus would feel more effective, it just feels like a bug or a software that screwed something up. Since nothing is running slow or anything.

What I did yesterday, was update my Windows. I haven't had Windows Update turned on in about a year, so I updated everything recommended and optional, then I also updated a software called Wunderlist. So it may be one of the two.

Edit: Actually, I just remembered. I updated Windows after I was having the problems because I thought it could remedy it. I don't think I was having the explorer not refreshing problem, just explorer locking up files from being deleted.

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