How to Stop Apps with the Windows 10 Task Manager

By Peter Weverka

If you are familiar with the early days of Microsoft, Windows employed programs, but now all tasks are completed with apps. As with programs, there may come a time when you need to stop apps from running. Follow these simple steps to stop apps with the Windows 10 Task Manager:

  1. On the desktop, select Task Manager from the taskbar context menu using one of these methods:
    • Mouse: Right-click over an empty area of the taskbar and select Task Manager from the context menu.
    • Touchscreen: Tap and hold an empty area of the taskbar until a small box appears; then release. Select Task Manager from the context menu.
    • Keyboard: Press Ctrl+Shift+Esc to display the Task Manager directly.
  2. The Task Manager lists any running apps — both desktop apps and Windows 10 apps. Select an app, also referred to as a task.

    Note that the End Task button is now available. You don’t have to end this task, but you could. Any of the tasks in the Task Manager window can be ended without consequences.

    Be careful about ending an app used to create something (for example, a word-processing app) because you could lose data you haven’t saved before ending the task. Use the Task Manager to end tasks that you can’t end otherwise, such as a frozen or locked app or one that seems to slow down everything.

  3. Select the More Details option.

    The Task Manager expands and displays detailed information about every process running on the computer. There’s more to Task Manager, although you may not need all its capabilities. Select Fewer Details to return to the simpler version.

  4. Close the Task Manager.