We have all gone through this nightmare. You are working away on an important report, rushing to complete it before the imminent deadline or you may be chatting with a friend that you haven’t seen in months and they are about to tell you some major news when suddenly your PC freezes out of the blue. Panic is the first reaction, specially because you have no idea what is going on or how to fix it.
Truth to be told, there is not an easy solution for a frozen Windows system. In order to fix a computer that is not responding, you will need to find the root cause of the problem and that will take some serious investigation skills. Furthermore, there is a chance that even if you find out the reason why your PC has stopped working, there may not be a way to repair it.
Most of the times, it is very difficult to pin point what caused the issue. The culprit could be the latest software that you installed but in some cases, the problem may be that you forgot to install a software update. Hardware failure could also be responsible for the disaster and that would make things even harder to solve. Whatever the case, the reality is that there is no magic wand to identify the cause and fix your frozen PC in one go.
However, not all hope is lost. After all, as we mentioned earlier, a frozen PC is something that most of us have experienced, meaning that there is a way to break the spell and bring your PC back to life. Before you fall into despair, keep in mind the below steps and next time your computer freezes, follow them as they might help.
Close the program that is causing the issue
Most likely, your computer has frozen due to the mischief of an specific program. Therefore, the first thing that could help you to fix a frozen computer is to close the program that caused all the mess. You probably noticed that your system slowed down once you started using that program and maybe you had already experienced issues with that particular program in the past. If the cause of the freeze is that your computer is getting stressed over a program that is not running smoothly, closing it may be the solution. You may not always be able to close the program or programs that are causing the issue but if you can, you can count yourself lucky as this is the simplest way to mend a frozen computer.
Task Manager to the rescue
In case you are not able to identify the program that may be causing the problem or you cannot close it in the usual way, you can access the task manager by pressing CTRL + SHIFT and ESC. It will show you the list of programs that are running and you will be able to identify the one that is consuming a major part of your Memory. This also works when your computer is terribly slow but shows some responsiveness, even a delayed one.
If closing down the troublesome programs through the Task Manager does not work, you can try doing right click on the Windows icon in the lower-left corner of your Desktop. If that doesn’t do it, you will need to try more “drastic” measures and press the power button of your PC until it switches off.
Another grim possibility is that your computer may have been infected by malware. To make sure that this is not the case, run some scans to verify that there is no evil software that has taken over your system and if necessary make the necessary fixes with your antivirus program. If everything has failed up to this point, it may be the right time to bring your computer to a professional but if you can access internet from another device, you may give online forums a try. You may be able to find the characteristics of the freezing that you are experiencing and may benefit from the advise of other users. In any case, the most important thing to remember is to back up. It may sound obvious, but many people fail to do it and it is the best way to ensure that even if you experience a freeze you have no major reason of concern. Even if the only alternative is to copy all the crucial data to an external drive and reinstall Windows.