What To Do When Task Manager Does Not Open

by Abhishek Bhatnagar on February 27, 2009



Due to virus attacks and worms, Windows Task Managers gets disabled. We have already posted the solution to the problem Task Manager is Disabled, but in some cases the virus attack is too severe to solve the problem in simple steps. In such case there are alternative methods to kill processes. In this post we will tell you about a  free and useful tool which can be used in place of task manager when it gets disabled.


There is a free utility by Microsoft Sysinternals called process explorer. Its a light weight and small utility which can work well as a replacement to Windows Task Manager.


To use Process Explorer, simply download Process Explorer here and Run it. It shows you the process details as you can see in the snapshot below(click to enlarge):



You can do a lot of things related to a process, most useful of which are Kill Process or Kill Process Tree which you can see in the snapshot below. Just right click on the process and you can get lot many options, which include Suspend, or restart the process, see properties etc.


So next time you can not open the task manager, you can use this tool to use the functionality of Windows Task Manager.

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

SexyGirl February 27, 2009 at 7:01 pm

oh yes…i need this solution..thnx!

Ajay February 28, 2009 at 1:48 am

I prefer KillProcess for this reason and then enable the same with a registry hack.

Anthea September 16, 2009 at 1:02 pm

I just got rid of the Windows Protection Suite trojan virus, but found that my Task Manager will not open. I followed the instructions given at Task Manager disabled problem windows xp website, but found that my Windows XP doesn’t have gpedit.msc, so I went to start, run, and typed in “regedit” (this worked).

I followed this path: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionPolicies, but found there is no “System” subfolder under Policies, only an “Explorer” subfolder containing two files: Default, type: REG_SZ (no value), and NoDriveTypeAutoRun, type: REG_DWORD (value 0x00000091 (145). On the off chance that it might work, I went ahead and changed the value of the NoDriveTypeAutoRun to 0 and restarted the computer. Still no Task Manager. Now I’m stuck.

kumarchandan September 23, 2009 at 9:51 pm

my task manager is not open.when i press ctrl+alt+del.
says that ‘can not find script file “C:\WINDOWS\system32\winjpg.jpg”

SURAJ October 20, 2009 at 9:50 am

awesome dude THANKS A 1000 TONZ….[;)]

akash October 24, 2009 at 12:32 am

Thanks download Process Explorer is working properly

sreekanth November 17, 2009 at 8:53 pm

hi… my task manager has been disabled…. even wen i tried regedit in run even its not working… can any one give me a solution for this…

krishna January 12, 2010 at 3:43 pm

in my computer,
task manager opens just for a second and disappears.

I don’t know why?
I have updated my windows xp sp2 to sp3 however it didn’t work.

What to do???

hari January 24, 2010 at 10:29 pm

my task manager has been disabled…. even wen i tried regedit in run even its not working…and message is “Your registry editing is disabled by your administrator”…..what is the solution and proper (free)antivirus…?

juber May 7, 2010 at 3:18 pm

thanx… its really working

Prashant May 30, 2010 at 11:07 am

If you do not find System key in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies

try to find it in

go to disable tsk manager in right hand side and set value to zero that should work….

JolyIndia June 4, 2010 at 10:42 am

Its a nice tool.
Able to fix the issue.

irmantas September 6, 2010 at 10:16 pm

still cant found DisableTaskMgr of type: REG_DWORD

Mrudul November 10, 2010 at 11:43 pm

i am unable to install even Process Explorer here.

VoodooBrian December 2, 2010 at 6:17 am

In the registry, do a f3 search for taskmgr until you find the keys that says taskmgr.exe

In some of keys, there is a Debugger with the value of svchost.exe. Rename debugger to something else and see if it comes back. Worked for me after all web searches for this problem has failed. If it doesnt help, you can always name it back

Raz April 6, 2011 at 2:48 pm

its a very use ful option to get taskmgr.

kumaran May 9, 2011 at 3:48 pm

task manager not open

jitender Sehrawet May 12, 2011 at 5:02 pm

i got infected by virus yesterday. i cleaned it up. my antivirus deleted some file but the problem is that now some of my web site which i want to open, i m not able to press the log on button on IE, and if i m trying on google chrome i am able to press log on button, but some function are also missing after loging on. coulkd any body please help me

Steve July 29, 2011 at 8:27 am

I was stuck for hours- Removing svchost.exe from the debugger key worked for me- Thanks Voodoo! (I removed Multiple Viruses from machine also using Windows Security Essentials).

Himanshu August 9, 2011 at 3:05 pm

This tool is really awesome ! It helped me a lot.Thanks a ton !

Yachendra Rajesh kumar August 13, 2011 at 12:49 pm

Thannks aallot for providng thhiss ttoool.myy machine wwas attackd by virus snt by onee miischivious person in yahoo chat..using this i killed tht virus..

muneeb November 6, 2011 at 7:38 pm

thanks dude you rock………

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