Windows 7 hangs when creating a new folder and hangs again when renaming it

Ok, so I am using Windows 7 64 bit and while I have overall been pleased with Wndows 7, I must be unbiased and post the problems too, right.

Well, I have a problem that is frustrating.

PROBLEM
Windows 7 hangs when creating a new folder and hangs again when renaming it

How it happens
The problem occurs when I create a New Folder. Explorer hangs for about 45 seconds. I am not sure what the problem is, but there is no excuse for taking 45 seconds to create a new folder.

To make the problem worse, the first thing I do when I make a new folder is I rename it. So if I try to rename the folder, it hangs another 45 seconds.

Cause

Unknown…

Could it be my hardware? Maybe. I have a Lenovo T61p with 4 GB of RAM and a 160 GB hard drive that is just shy of two years old.

Could it be some application? Maybe. But I don’t have any of the most likely culprits such as Antivirus installed. I a a developer, but I don’t have MySQL or SQL Server Express running or anything.

How is my processor and memory utilization when this occurs? Fine.
CPU: I don’t have 100% CPU, and I have almost no CPU usage, under 10% (moving between 3 and 9% and once hit 16%).
RAM: 1.3 GB used, 2.7 available.

So this is a the first big fat negative for windows 7. If you have seen this, then that would confirm that it is a wide spread issue and not just an issue on my single machine.

update: 2/20/2010
The cause is obviously something to do with going to full hibernate mode and returning.

Possible Resolutions

Do a clean reboot.
Or restart Explorer.
Or disable Windows Search??

75 Comments

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  4. Garvin says:

    I a experiencing the same problem. everytime i create a new folder my hp Pavilion dv6-3236nr Entertainment laptop freezes. i wait for about a minute then when renaming it the same thing happens again. absoluetly frustrating. i have defragmented my disks, clean ur usless logs, arranged and scanned folder still the problem exits. Please help or im gonna destroy this peice of machine because its driving me nuts

    • Rhyous says:

      Garvin, did you read about the issue be narrowed down to happening only after your computer has hibernated?
      Is this the same for you?
      If you don't know, then do a full reboot and see if the issue goes away.
      Perhaps a windows update or driver update will make it work after hibernation?

  5. Kar.ma says:

    Hi. You said it could be related with notebooks, but I can confirm this happening to my destkop. I frequently use to hibernate, so I believe this is the reason. Does anyone know if the KB980408 (thanks Dustin!) really fix it ? I keep my updates disabled, that's why I don't know.

  6. Dustin says:

    This was fixed by update http://support.microsoft.com/kb/980408 ... Tested it and seems to be working here...

  7. Matt says:

    I have the same problem, only I'm running Windows 7 Professional x64 on my custom-built desktop. All top of the line hardware. I was thinking maybe it was a HD issue, but I've run chkdsk and all of that to no avail. As in other's cases, rebooting solves the problem until the next time it randomly crops up.

    I'm not connecting to any network shares other than via the Homegroup (although the machine hosts a couple). I never hibernate, but do use Standby/Sleep.

    I don't use any antivirus software. I do use Windows Firewall and Windows Defender.

    I also have a Thinkpad T61 on Win 7 Pro x64 that does NOT experience the issue and never has.

    Other than this one problem, I haven't had any issues with Win 7.

  8. John says:

    I believe the cause is a network share being connected before sleep/hibernate and explorer becoming confused when it wakes up. All issues seem to hang on renames (delete/new folder/move all involve renaming in some way). Good luck in finding a cure.

  9. douglas davenport says:

    Ok, this bug disappeared for a 2 months but now its back with a vengence, ARGG. fix-it.fix-it.fix-it.fix-it.

  10. FHK says:

    Exact same problem here. MS must be aware of this frustrating bug. Why is it not fixed???

  11. rhyous says:

    Hey all,

    I forgot to mention I did post this here so Microsoft will know about it.
    http://social.answers.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7performance/thread/37a8060c-a4f0-4a14-9bbf-cfa075bd2394/

  12. Robbe says:

    same problem here... anyone reported this case to MS ?

  13. dc says:

    Yup - same annoying problem here. Turning off Microsoft networks resolves this problem but then I can't access my other machine's shared drives.

  14. Yousif says:

    Services > Disable (Windows Search) > Done.

  15. rhyous says:

    Hey all,

    I can reproduce this every time by putting my computer to full hibernate (not just sleep). I think you don't have to reboot every time.

    When it is occurring, if I use Task Manager to end task Explorer.exe and restart Explorer.exe using Task Manager's File | New Task, I am working without rebooting.

    Thanks,

    Jared

    • James says:

      Did you try the instructions in one of the above comments? I have a Windows 7 Ultimate desktop and every single time I tried to create a folder on the desktop it would hang for a good 20 seconds. For me it was as simple as clicking Start button > run type services.msc hit enter then going into Services > Disable (Windows Search) > Done.

  16. Noel Ho says:

    Greg: Do you put your notebook to "Sleep"?

    That seems to cause the problem for me. But not all the time. Sometimes when i wake it up from "Sleep", it seems to be ok. Sometimes no. But I have NEVER gotten the problem when starting my notebook from a "Shutdown" state.

    There was a suggestion to disable all the shell extensions and re-enable them one by one to find the problem extension, but you need to reboot for it to take effect. When i do that, the problem obviously goes away! I couldnt be bothered spending that much time rebooting my computer and putting to sleep, over and over just to find the source of this problem.

    I'll just wait for MS or someone to come up with a fix. For now, its more convenient to wait for it to finish, or reboot the computer if the problem occurs.

  17. Greg says:

    Regarding earlier comments, I don't hibernate my computer and I don't have Microsoft Security Essentials.

  18. Greg says:

    Yes, I have the same problem on a Windows 7, 64 bit, Dell M6400 laptop. It's a new computer and I just encountered the problem today, which may have been the first time I created a folder. Sucks.

  19. zak says:

    I am affected as well.
    Windows 7 x64 Ultimate.
    I tried analyzing using the described methods but was unable to find a cause so far.
    Killing and restarting explorer.exe works for me as well.
    I should note that I also hibernate my system daily (over night), so this may be related to hibernation.

  20. Patje says:

    I'm running Microsoft Forefront Client Security which is not really the same, but yeah it does sort of the same thing 🙂
    After my last reboot (at least a week ago), I haven't had the issue again (I put my laptop in sleep every day at least twice).

  21. douglas davenport says:

    Does anyone NOT have Microsoft Security Essentials and is still suffering from this issue? Perhaps that is the cause...

  22. douglas davenport says:

    This is issue is Ridiculous! I have a t400 4gb ram no junk-ware installed. A quick google reveals we are not alone no one seems to have any advice other than a possible virus. I love windows 7 but this is really cramping my style...
    How do we get MS to address this!?

    • rhyous says:

      I guess we need someone to open a ticket with Microsoft to diagnose it and fix it.

      It is currently not affecting me anymore, though I can't for sure say I ever figured out the cause. I just went away both times it happened.

      • douglas davenport says:

        Any suggestions how we could go about opening a ticket, I'm desperate.

      • rhyous says:

        I believe you go to http://support.microsoft.com and click on Visit Our Solution Centers.
        Then click on Windows 7.
        Then scroll to the bottom and look for the light-blue question mark icon and click the link, which is this link, so you might go their directly:
        http://support.microsoft.com/gethelp/default.aspx?content=ph;en-us;14019

      • rhyous says:

        However, it will be even better if your company has a contract with Microsoft and you get your company's IT department to submit a ticket.

      • douglas davenport says:

        It is also intermittent on my machine, I don't see it being related to standby/hibernate as other poster mentioned. haven't noticed any pattern. I am not creating a ticket with MS because they charge more $$ than I paid for windows 7 (Academic license).
        Hopefully someone with a corporate service contract will get this submitted.

  23. Noel Ho says:

    Hi all. I have the same problem on my AlienWare M15x as well. Running:

    Win7 Professional 64Bit
    Intel i7 Q720
    4 Gig Ram

    I only noticed this after i started putting my notebook to "Sleep" or "Hibernate". After waking from "Sleep" or "Hibernate", then this problem seems to occur. If i use the notebook from a "Restart" or "Shut Down" state, then I have no problems at all.

    I also noticed that everyone who has complained about this is using a notebook. I'm guessing this only affects notebooks?

    I do have some mapped network share drives. Not sure if that is an issue?

  24. Patje says:

    as a workaround (at least for me) I open a task manager and kill explorer.exe and start a new explorer.exe
    Or a cold reboot also (temporary) fixes this.

    just tought i'd share

  25. Quinn says:

    I am always glad when I see the exact problem already blogged about somewhere!
    I have same setup
    XPS M1730
    x64 W7

  26. xennan says:

    Same problem here. On a Lenovo T61 laptop, 4 GB RAM.

    • rhyous says:

      So this happend to me for a few weeks, then stopped, then started again.

      Read my second post about it:
      http://rhyous.com/2009/12/08/explorer-exe-in-windows-7-still-hanging-when-i-create-a-new-file-rename-the-file-delete-a-file-etc/

      Maybe sfc /scannow fixed it?

  27. Patje says:

    same problem here on a Dell D830 laptop
    can't seem to find any cause as well, please let me know if you were ever able to find a fix!
    thanks

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  62. rhyous says:

    I haven't found a solution yet, because it stopped happening.

    There is a good post by Mark Russinovich on troubleshooting this.
    http://blogs.technet.com/markrussinovich/archive/2005/08/28/the-case-of-the-intermittent-and-annoying-explorer-hangs.aspx

    He recommends Sysinternals tools Procmon, Filemon, and Regmon to troubleshoot this, which makes sense because I believe he took part in developing those tools, being the co-founder/architect/primary developer. All tools which I was trying to use but my issue stopped happening so I was unable to diagnose.

    His blog is very informative but for someone not technical it is not a very good walk-thru, and is more a higer level process for using these Sysinternals tools to diagnose your issue, so if you aren't technical, it maybe difficult. For example, he says to create a filter in Filemon to show only errors, but he doesn't explain how to set such a filter. Everything is easy once you know how to do it.

  63. raja says:

    Yeah...
    Me also have the same problem....
    Mine is also lenovo y410 - 4Gb RAM...
    What's the solution exactly..
    Plz help us..

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