Windows 11

How to Fix File Explorer When it Keeps Opening

Effective Solutions to Resolve File Explorer Opening Automatically


File Explorer is a crucial feature of Windows 11, but it can be frustrating when it keeps opening on its own. This issue is due to the AutoPlay feature enabled, corrupted system files, malware infection, conflicting third-party software, or a hardware issue, such as a loose connection.

This issue disrupts your workflow. You may have to keep minimizing or closing the File Explorer, which can be time-consuming and annoying. It can also slow down your PC, using up resources like CPU and memory. It can also cause problems with other programs. This guide will suggest workable solutions.

1. Restart File Explorer in Task Manager

Restart File Explorer in Task Manager will force File Explorer to close and restart. This fix repairs the problem in many cases. Before applying this solution, confirm that you do not have an external device with a loose connection plugged in that is causing this issue. The following steps will help you restart File Explorer:

  1. Hit ctrl + alt + del at once and select Task Manager from the list of options.
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  2. When it opens, click Details, click explorer.exe, and click End task at the top-right of the screen.
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  3. Then, click Run new task at the top right corner of the screen.
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  4. Enter explorer.exe in the dialog box and click OK.
  5. Lastly, restart your PC.

2. Perform an SFC scan

Performing an SFC scan searches for corrupted system files and repairs them. It is a valuable utility for fixing several problems, including when File Explorer keeps opening. To perform an SFC scan, follow these steps:

  1. Hit the Windows and S keys simultaneously, type cmd in the text field, and choose the Run as administrator option to start the Command Prompt as an administrator.
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  2. Once the User Account Control prompts you, select Yes to continue.
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  3. When the Command Prompt displays, enter the following command into the prompt and tap the Enter key to start an SFC scan:
    sfc /scannow
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  4. Finally, it would be best to restart your computer to implement repairs.

3. Deactivate AutoPlay

Deactivating AutoPlay is helpful if the File-Explorer-keeps-opening error arises when you plug in peripherals like USB flash storage devices or USB external hard drives. This issue is usually due to a loose connection between your device and computer. Use the following steps to deactivate AutoPlay:

  1. Hold down the Windows + S keys at once, enter control panel in the search field, and click on Open to launch it.
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  2. Set the default View by option to either Large icons or Small icons.
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  3. When the view is adjusted, click AutoPlay.
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  4. Once the next window displays, uncheck the Use AutoPlay for all media and devices option.
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  5. You could also set the Removable drive option to Take no action.
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  6. Finally, click Save to verify the settings.
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  7. Restart your PC.

4. Scan for malware

Scanning for malware is helpful when malware maliciously creates a shortcut to File Explorer in your startup folder or changes the settings of File Explorer. Several antivirus and anti-malware programs are available, so use one you trust.

To scan your computer for malware, follow these steps:

  1. Push the Windows + S keys down simultaneously, type Windows Security in the search field, and open the Windows Security application.
  2. When the Windows Security window opens, click the Virus & threat protection option.
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  3. Then, click Scan options to see all available scans.
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  4. Choose the Full scan option, then click Scan now to do a deep scan on your computer for viruses or malware.

5. Perform clean boot

Performing a clean boot is a troubleshooting method that launches Windows with fewer drivers and startup programs. This process assists in isolating the cause of a problem by stopping any third-party software from running. This fix can help to determine if the cause is a third-party program or service.

To perform a clean boot, follow these steps:

  1. Hold the Windows and R keys to open the Run dialog box, type msconfig in the entry field, and press Enter.
  2. Then, locate the Services tab, click on it, and check the Hide all Microsoft services box.
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  3.  Click on the Disable all button and then click Apply.
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  4. Select the Startup tab and then click Open Task Manager.
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  5. Now right-click on the first enabled app on the Task Manager tab and click Disable.
  6. Finally, follow step 6 to disable all enabled applications one after the other.
  7. After disabling the apps, close Task Manager.
  8. Restart your PC.

In conclusion, it can be frustrating when the File Explorer keeps opening on its own. However, the correct troubleshooting steps can help you resolve this problem and regain control over your computer. In addition to the solutions in this guide, consider disabling unnecessary programs from starting up automatically.

You may also clear the File Explorer history and reset its settings to resolve the issue. You can do this through the Folder Options in the Control Panel. Identifying and uninstalling any recently installed or suspicious programs can help resolve the issue. Consult Microsoft support or online forums if issues persist.

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Richard Omachona
Richard is a techie in providing fixes and solutions for computer issues of various kinds. Among his contemporaries, he is a preferred choice. His experiences are vast in Windows operating systems, and several other skills in programming such as Python, Web Frontend designing implementing at industry standards, best practices in HTML, CSS and JavaScript. and basics in Web Backend. He also loves traveling, gaming and music.