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Windows 10 crashes or freezes: How to fix it

Birgit Götz

If Windows 10 keeps crashing, freezing, or otherwise unresponsive, don't panic and check a few things. You can find most errors yourself and remedy them very easily.

EnlargeWindows 10 can be quite annoying when it freezes or crashes

Windows 10 has a ton of features that make our lives easier, but sometimes the exact opposite happens: the operating system freezes, shuts down, or just shows a blue screen.

If this happens regularly to your Windows computer, go to troubleshooting after a restart - you can usually solve the problem yourself very easily.

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Check Windows updates

The first thing to do is make sure you are using the latest version of Windows.

  • Click on the start button and to the left of it on the symbol for "Settings".

  • Then type "Windows Update" in the search box. You will now be shown whether your Windows is up to date or whether new updates are available.

  • If there is an update available, download and install it.

EnlargeMake sure that your system is up to date and install any available updates

Delete temporary files

The temporary file folder fills up very quickly. You should delete its contents regularly, as a full Temp directory can affect the performance of Windows.

  • Press Windows + R keys to bring up the Run dialog box.

  • Enter "temp" in the "Open" field and press OK.

  • Press Ctrl + A to select all of the files in the Temp folder, then press Delete to remove them. Sometimes a message appears stating that not all files can be removed because the folder (or a file in it) is open in another program. Then carry out the deletion process again later.

EnlargeSome files in the Temp folder cannot be deleted immediately - just try again later

Check memory

Bad memory is one of the most common causes of computer freezing and luckily, Windows has verification software built into it.

  • Press Windows Key + R

  • Enter "mdsched.exe" in the "Open" field and click OK. You have the choice to check immediately (this will restart your computer) or to wait until the next reboot.

  • The next time you restart you will see a blue screen (which shows you the progress of your memory analysis)

EnlargeScan your computer for memory problems

Adjust virtual memory

Virtual memory is an extension of the physical memory of your computer - part memory and part hard disk. If your computer runs out of memory while performing an action, Windows will use this virtual memory to store files temporarily. You can adjust the number of resources that virtual storage can access.

  • Go to "Control Panel> System and Security> System> Advanced Settings".

EnlargeIn the control panel, click through to the "Advanced system settings"
  • In the Performance section, click Settings and open the Advanced tab.

  • Virtual memory information is displayed at the bottom of the window. Click "Change" and then clear the check box at the top of the new window that appears.

EnlargeHere you define the new size for the virtual memory
  • Select your drive and click "Custom Size".

  • Below you can see the current size of your virtual memory; use the Custom Size option to enlarge it by 50 or 100 percent.

  • Click Set and OK.

Check drive

Another common problem is drive failure. If you haven't just defragmented it, this could also be a cause of Windows crashing.

  • Open Windows Explorer, right click your primary drive (probably your C drive) and click Properties.

  • Go to the Tools tab and click Check in the Error Checking window.

  • Click "Scan Drive" to start the process.