How to Open Task Manager in Windows 10
Windows Task Manager is an advanced utility tool that helps you manage your apps that are running.
Task Manager lets you see which apps are open and which you're using. You can also see which apps are running in the background that you didn't open yourself.
One important reason that you might want to open Task Manager is to stop apps that are making windows unresponsive.
There are a few different ways to open Task Manager. So in this article, I will walk you through 7 ways you can open Task Manager on Windows 10.
1. How to Open Task Manager with Windows Search
The easiest way to find anything on a Windows machine is to search for it. Task Manager is not an exception.
- Click on the search icon then type "Task Manager" in the search bar.
- Task Manager will pop up as a search result, and you can open it from there.
2. How to Open Task Manager with Keyboard Shortcuts
Some apps might go rogue and stop Windows from responding, so you might not have access to Windows Search in such situations.
Windows has two different key combinations with which you can open up Task Manager in case you want to see running apps or stop an app.
- You can open Task Manager by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc all together. This opens Task Manager straightaway
- You can also open Task Manager from the GINA screen by pressing and holding Ctrl + Alt + Del .
Some apps might prevent you from accessing Task Manager with Ctrl + Shift + Esc, but pressing Ctrl + Alt + Del will always open up the Graphical Identification and Authentication (GINA) screen for you so you can select and open Task Manager from there.
3. How to Open Task Manager through the Control Panel
You can use the Control Panel search option to open Task Manager.
Type "Task Manager" in the search bar and you will see a link to Task Manager under "System".
4. How to Open Task Manger through the Start Menu
A lot of people prefer opening apps from the start menu. You can open Task Manager from there too.
- Click on the Windows icon, or press the WIN Key on the keyboard.
- Scroll to the bottom and open up the Windows system folder
- Task Manager will be shown alongside some other apps – just select it there to open it.
5. How to Open Task Manager with the Run Command
Many apps and folders can be opened with the run dialogue on Windows 10. There's a command for opening Task Manager from there too.
- Press the WIN + R keys on the keyboard to open the run dialogue
- Type "taskmgr" and click "Ok" to open the Task Manager.
6. How to Open Task Manager from the Taskbar
You can open the Task Manager from Taskbar too.
Right-click on an empty space in the taskbar then select "Task Manager".
7. How to Open Task Manager from the Windows Power User Menu
In addition to the 6 methods we've already seen, you can open Task Manager by right-clicking in the Windows logo and then selecting "Task Manager" from the menu that pops up.
You can also get there by pressing and holding the Win + X keys on the keyboard and then selecting “Task Manager” from the menu.
Windows Task Manager is a very powerful tool that can greatly increase your productivity. With it, you can see which apps are running and stop those that are causing issues.
In this article, you've learned about several ways to open Task Manager on Windows 10 so you can have a better experience using it.
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How to Open the Task Manager in Windows 10
There are many ways to access the task manager, including keyboard shortcuts
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What to Know
- Ctrl+Alt+Esc is the fastest way to open Task Manager in Windows 10.
- Other keyboard shortcuts include Ctrl+Alt+Delete and Windows+X .
- Right-click anywhere on the Windows taskbar to access Task Manager.
Windows Task Manager is an excellent tool for keeping track of system processes, monitoring resource usage, and forcing memory-hogging applications to close. Microsoft has introduced a number of improvements to Task Manager over the years, but luckily, accessing it on Windows 10 hasn’t changed much from Windows 7.
If you'd like more information, check out our walkthrough on how to use the Windows Task Manager .
How Do I Open the Task Manager in Windows 10?
From the Start Menu to keyboard shortcuts, there are multiple ways to open Task Manager in Windows 10. Here are the most common ways to do it:
- Type Ctrl+Alt+Delete
- Type Ctrl+Alt+Esc
- Open Power User Menu by typing Windows+X
- Right-click the Taskbar
- Use File Explorer
- Create a shortcut
How Do I Get to Task Manager on Keyboard?
Here are a few keyboard shortcuts to open up Task Manager quickly:
Ctrl+Alt+Delete is a popular shortcut across multiple generations of Windows, and up until Windows Vista, it brought you directly to Task Manager. The shortcut’s functionality has changed a bit with successive versions of Windows, as it now opens the Windows Security screen.
Once the Windows Security screen is open, select Task Manager from the menu to open it.
Both Windows 8 and Windows 10 include a feature called Power User Menu that can be accessed by pressing Windows key+X . This menu provides quick access to a number of advanced system utilities, including Task Manager.
What Is the Fastest Way to Open Task Manager?
The easiest (and fastest) keyboard shortcut for opening Task Manager is to press Ctrl+Shift+Esc . This not only takes you directly to the Task Manager but won’t disrupt certain activities like typing Ctrl+Alt+Delete would (such as using Remote Desktop).
How Do I Open Task Manager Without Keyboard Shortcuts?
If you’d prefer to not mess around with keyboard shortcuts like Ctrl+Alt+Delete, there are a few alternate ways to access Task Manager in Windows 10.
Right-Click the Taskbar
This method is pretty self-explanatory. All you need to do is right-click anywhere on the Windows 10 taskbar at the bottom of your screen and select Task Manager .
Use the Run Box or Start Menu
You can use Windows 10 search functionality to access Task Manager in a couple of ways.
Typing Windows+R will bring up the Run box, which has been a Windows OS fixture for decades. Enter taskmgr into the field provided and then press OK to open Task Manager.
You can also use the Windows 10 Start menu’s search box. Type taskmgr and press Enter .
Locate Task Manager in File Explorer
If a manual search is more your style, you can look for the Task Manager executable directly in File Explorer.
Open File Explorer .
Click This PC .
Open C Drive .
Click Windows .
Click System32 .
Type taskmgr in the search bar and press Enter .
Open Taskmgr .
Create a Shortcut
If you find yourself needing to use Task Manager a lot, it might be a good idea to create a shortcut. There are a couple of methods for doing this.
While Task Manager is running, create a shortcut in the Taskbar by right-clicking the Task Manager icon and selecting Pin to Taskbar .
You can also create a desktop shortcut using the following steps:
Right-click an empty space on your desktop and select New .
Select Shortcut .
Enter C:/Windows/System32/taskmgr into the Create Shortcut window and press Next .
Type Task Manager as the name for the new shortcut and then click Finish .
macOS doesn't have a Task Manager, but you can access Task Manager-equivalent functions in two places. First, the Force Quit Applications dialog is where you can force malfunctioning programs to quit. To access the Force Quit dialog, select the Apple menu , then click Force Quit . Or, press Command+Option+Esc to bring up the Force Quit dialog. If you need to access information about memory consumption or process data, you'll need to open the Activity Monitor. To access the Activity Monitor, click Spotlight Search (the magnifying glass on the top right of your screen), and type in Activity Monitor .
To open a Chromebook's task-management tool, click the Menu icon > More Tools and select Task Manager . For more data, select Stats for Nerds .
An easy way to do this is to open Task Manager on your primary monitor, then use Windows+Shift+left arrow or right arrow to move the application window from one monitor to the other.
To run Task Manager as an administrator, navigate to Task Manager using one of the methods described above. Then, right-click on Task Manager and select Run as Administrator . Enter the administrator password when prompted, then you'll open Task Manager as an administrator.
To use the Google Chrome Task Manager , open Chrome and select Menu (three dots), then select More Tools > Task Manager . With Chrome's Task Manager, view a list of every open tab, process, and extension, as well as key statistics about memory usage, CPU usage, and network activity.
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How to open Task Manager on Windows
Here's how to open Task Manager on Windows 10 and Windows 11
PC newbie or veteran, you may not know how to open Task Manager on Windows. Why would you want to open the Windows Task Manager anyway? Well, this feature does a lot more than its name suggests.
Task Manager not only lets you manage tasks (who'd have guessed?) — but also shows a whole bunch of useful information, such as your computer’s current performance or which apps are taking up the most resources on startup.
Even if you have one of the best Windows laptops or best gaming PCs , this info can still come in handy.
There are a few ways to open Task Manager on Windows 11 and Windows 10, as we cover in our simple guide below.
Ready? Here's how to open Task Manager on Windows 10 and Windows 11.
1. Use the keyboard shortcut Ctrl + Alt + Esc
It requires some finger gymnastics, but this is the easiest and quickest way to open Task Manager on Windows.
2. You can also right-click the taskbar , then click Task Manager .
This is a useful method if you don't have a working keyboard to hand. Unfortunately, this only works in Windows 10 as it was removed from Windows 11 for some reason. If anyone from Microsoft is reading this: bring back this feature, please!
3. Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete , then click Task Manager .
The third, and probably most familiar, way to open the task manager is through the Ctrl + Alt + Delete menu. This is the classic way to get to the task manager that most of us will recognize, though step 1 above is a much more efficient alternative.
4. Press Win + R to open a command prompt, then type in "taskmgr" and hit enter .
You can even open the Task Manager from a command prompt. This is the best choice if you want to impress your friends by appearing like a hacker or character from The Matrix.
And there we are. Now you can summon Task Manager in four different ways. With this knowledge, you’re invincible. Now you know how to open Task Manager on Windows, take a look at how to enable God Mode in Windows 11 or 10 or how to change the Windows 11 Start menu back to Windows 10 . Or for another Windows guide, check out how to factory reset on Windows 10 .
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Dale Fox is a freelance journalist based in the UK. He's been a tech nerd ever since childhood, when he used the money from his first job as a paperboy to buy a subscription to GamesMaster magazine. Dale was previously a presenter and editor in China, where he also worked as a copywriter for OnePlus at its Shenzhen HQ.
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Windows 11 Task Manager In-Depth Guide and Overview
Everything that you need to know
The Task Manager is a powerful Windows 11 utility that provides detailed real-time information about the software and hardware on your PC. It’s also indispensable when troubleshooting applications, monitoring hardware resource usage, and managing startup programs.
In this in-depth guide and overview, you’ll learn everything you need to know about the Task Manager in Windows 11, including ways to use it effectively.
Opening the Windows 11 Task Manager
In Windows 11, you can launch the Task Manager just like any other program by selecting Start > All Apps > Windows Tools > Task Manager . However, the most convenient way to invoke it is through the Power User menu (right-click the Start button and select Task Manager ).
If you prefer keyboard shortcuts, pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc will quickly bring up the Task Manager. If the operating system appears stuck, you can still get to it by pressing Ctrl + Alt + Delete (which opens Windows 11’s Security Screen) and then selecting Task Manager .
The Default Task Manager
The Windows 11 Task Manager appears as a stripped-down version of the full user interface by default. It’s tiny, features no menu options, and simply shows a list of active apps on your computer.
You can choose any app within the list and forcibly shut it down by selecting the End task button. That’s the quickest way to quit unresponsive programs.
Right-clicking any app within the list also reveals multiple contextual options as follows:
- Switch to: Immediately brings the app into focus.
- End task: Forcibly shuts down the app. It’s the same as selecting the End task button.
- Provide feedback: Provide feedback to Microsoft.
- Create dump file : Generate a dump (.DMP) file of the program, which is often requested by support engineers for troubleshooting purposes. You can also analyze dump files yourself .
- Run new task: Launch a new program, folder, or document with or without elevated privileges in Windows .
- Always on top: Place the Task Manager on top of other apps. This option also works in expanded view, which then helps you track resource usage in real-time.
- Go to details : Automatically select the executable file related to the program within the Details tab in the expanded view.
- Open file location: Opens the directory of the program’s main executable file in a File Explorer window.
- Search online: Perform an online search using Bing. If you don’t recognize a program, use this option to learn more about it.
- Properties: Brings up the program executable’s Properties dialog box. You can then check or modify its general, compatibility, and security settings and view additional details such as the version, publisher, etc.
The Expanded Task Manager
Select the More details button at the bottom left corner to expand the Task Manager’s user interface. You can always select Fewer details to go back to the stripped-down version whenever you want.
The expanded Task Manager consists of multiple tabs— Processes (default), Performance , App History , Startup , Users , Details , and Services . You can change the default tab that appears when you open Task Manager by selecting Options > Set default tab on the menu bar.
Task Manager – Tab Overview
You’ll go through each tab in more detail below, but here’s a brief overview:
- Processes: Offers a rundown of all active, background, and Windows processes on your computer, including performance stats per process.
- Performance: Provides real-time monitoring of the CPU (central processing unit) , memory, storage drive, network adapter, and video card.
- App History: Displays the resource usage history of Microsoft Store apps (default view) and traditional programs (optional).
- Startup: Lists programs that launch at startup and the related performance impact on your PC.
- Users: Displays the processes and resource usage on your computer for each user.
- Details: Provides a comprehensive list of processes and the relevant executable files in traditional format.
- Services: Features native and third-party services, along with options to start, stop, and restart them.
Task Manager – Menu Options
In the expanded view, you’ll find a list of menu options to the top of the Task Manager— File , Options , and View .
- File > Run new task : Open a program, folder, or document with or without administrative privileges.
- File > Exit : Exit the Task Manager.
- Options > Always on top : Keep the Task Manager on top of other windows.
- Options > Minimize on use : Hide the Task Manager while using the Switch to right-click option on an app or process.
- Options > Hide when minimized : Hide the Task Manager in the system tray while minimizing it.
- Options > Set default tab : Change the default tab that you see each time you open the Task Manager.
- Options > Show full account name : Display each user’s entire account name (profile and email ID) under the Users tab.
- Options > Show history for all processes : Reveal the history for both Microsoft Store apps and non-Store apps under the App History tab.
- View > Refresh now : Immediately refresh all tabs within the Task Manager.
- View > Update speed : Determine the Task Manager’s refresh speed— High , Normal (default), or Low . Selecting Paused lets you stop all updates.
- View > Group by type : Group or ungroup processes under the Processes tab.
- View > Expand all : Expand all processes to reveal sub-processes under the Processes tab.
- View > Collapse all : Collapse all expanded processes under the Processes tab.
The Processes Tab
The Processes tab in the Windows 11 Task Manager features a list of live processes on your PC, along with real-time usage stats under separate columns.
Processes Tab – Name Column
The Apps section at the top of the Name column sports a list of all open programs in Windows 11. The Background processes section features apps that run in the background (e.g., the system tray). A third section—labeled Windows processes —lists processes related to the operating system.
If you want, you can merge the sections list by unchecking View > Group by type on the Task Manager menu. However, that makes it harder to locate specific apps and processes.
By default, the Task Manager groups and hides the sub-processes related to each program. To reveal them, simply double-click a program’s name or select the tiny arrow icon next to it.
Optionally, use the View > Expand all and Collapse all menu options to expand and collapse all sub-processes under the Processes tab.
Right-clicking a process reveals multiple options, similar to what you get in the Task Manager’s simplified view. An exception is the integral Windows Explorer process, which features a Restart option instead of End task . That allows you to troubleshoot File Explorer-related issues by restarting it.
Processes Tab – Other Columns
The Processes tab contains additional columns that provide real-time system resource usage stats and insights for each process and subprocess, along with colors that shift between yellow and red to indicate minor to heavy resource usage.
The CPU , Memory , and Disk columns are arguably the most important since they let you spot programs that consume lots of resources. Selecting a column enables you to sort processes from the most resource-intensive to the least and vice-versa. This can be useful, for example, in figuring out things like which apps are causing the most CPU or Disk activity.
- Status: Displays a leaf-shaped icon to denote if Windows 11 has suspended the process to conserve power.
- CPU: Current CPU resource consumption of each process in percentage terms. An aggregate value is listed at the top of the column.
- Memory: Current memory usage in megabytes for each process, along with the total amount as a percentage at the top.
- Disk: Disk usage for each process.
- Network: Live network activity of each process in megabits per second .
Processes Tab – Additional Columns
Right-clicking any column also gives you the option to activate additional columns:
- Type : Displays the process category— App , Background process , or Windows process .
- Publisher: Reveals the publisher of the related program or service—e.g., Microsoft.
- PID: Unique decimal number assigned to each process, helpful in distinguishing between multiple instances of the same program.
- Process Name: This shows the filename and extension of the process.
- Command Line: Displays the full command line, options, and variables related to the process.
- GPU: GPU activity in percentage terms for each process.
- GPU Engine: Displays the GPU engine in active use by the process— 3D , Video Decode , Video Processing , etc.
- Power Usage: Power consumption of a process on a scale of Very Low , Low , Moderate , High , and Very High at any given moment.
- Power Usage Trend: Power usage of a process as an average. This is a better indicator since it accounts for time.
- Resource values : This lets you change the Memory , Disk , and Network columns to display values instead of percentages.
The Performance Tab
The Performance tab in the Task Manager lets you monitor total real-time utilization of the CPU, memory, disk, network, and GPU in Windows 11. Select each hardware component on the sidebar to view the relevant information.
Performance Tab – CPU
Displays CPU utilization by all processes over 60 seconds on a scale of 0-100. On multi-core CPUs, right-click the graph and select Change graph to > Logical processors to display separate charts for each logical processor . Hovering your cursor over a processor will reveal if the operating system has “parked” it to conserve power.
Underneath the graph, you’ll find the following information:
- Utilization : CPU utilization as a percentage.
- Speed : Current speed of the CPU.
- Processes : Total number of processes handled by the CPU.
- Threads : Thread count for all processes handled by the CPU.
- Handles : Total number of associations with shared resources (files, programs, memory locations, etc.).
- Up time : Time since you last turned on your PC.
The rest consists of general information related to the CPU, such as the processor model, base speed, and virtualization status .
Performance Tab – Memory
Displays total RAM usage in graphical format over 60 seconds on a scale of 0-100. In addition, a separate graph labeled Memory composition reveals a snapshot of the memory consisting of the following in different shades of color:
- In use : Memory in active use by processes, drivers, and the operating system.
- Modified : Memory that must be written to the disk before it can be repurposed.
- Standy : Memory consisting of cached data not in active use.
- Free : Memory that’s immediately available for use.
Underneath both graphs, you’ll see the following information as numeric values:
- In use : The amount of memory actively used by processes, drivers, and the operating system.
- Available : Memory available for use by the operating system (the sum of the Standby and Free categories in the memory composition graph).
- Committed : Displays a couple of values related to the page file in Windows .
- Cached : The sum of the Modified and Standby categories in the memory composition graph.
- Paged pool : Kernel and device driver memory that can be moved from RAM to the page file.
- Non-paged pool : Kernel and device driver memory that must stay in RAM.
The rest is general information about the physical memory modules—speed, the number of RAM slots used, and the form factor.
Performance Tab – Disk
Depending on the number of partitions and removable drives on your PC, you may see multiple disks listed under the sidebar. Each consists of two graphs that display disk utilization over 60 seconds on a scale of 0-100.
The Active time graph reveals the read and write requests, while the Disk transfer rate graph displays transfer rates between the drive and the operating system.
In addition to general drive-related information such as capacity, model, and type (HDD or SSD), you’ll see the following information:
- Active time : Percentage of time the disk spends reading or writing data. Higher percentages may indicate bottlenecks (often the case with mechanical hard drives).
- Average response time : Average amount of time to complete read and write requests.
- Read speed : The disk drive’s current read speed in kilobytes per second.
- Write speed : Current write speed of the disk drive in kilobytes per second.
Performance Tab – Wi-Fi/Ethernet
Reveals network information such as the adapter name, SSID, connection type, send and receive speeds (in Kbps), IPv4 and IPv6 addresses, and signal strength.
The graph displays total network utilization by apps and the operating system. Right-clicking the chart and selecting View network details will reveal extra information regarding network activity.
Performance Tab – GPU
Displays the GPU model, utilization, and other information regarding your PC’s video card, such as the amount of dedicated or shared memory and driver version. However, this section may not show up on computers with integrated graphics.
You can switch the default graph to display activity by GPU engine ( 3D , Video Decoding , Video Processing , etc.) by right-clicking and selecting Change graph to > Multiple engines .
Note : Windows 11 also includes an advanced hardware monitoring utility dubbed the Resource Monitor. Select Open Resource Monitor at the bottom of the Performance tab to get to it.
The App History Tab
The Task Manager’s App History tab displays the total CPU and network usage stats for Microsoft Store apps. If you want, you can include non-Store apps within the list by selecting Options > Show history for all processes on the menu bar.
You can reset the count for all columns by selecting Delete usage history at the top of the screen.
App History Tab – Default Columns
The App History tab displays the following columns:
- Name: The name of the program.
- CPU time: The total time the program has utilized the CPU since the last reset.
- Network: The total bandwidth (in megabytes) consumed by the program.
- Metered network: The total amount of data the program has consumed on metered networks .
- Tile updates: Data consumption related to live tile updates in the Start menu. This option is irrelevant since live tiles aren’t present in Windows 11. However, you may still see activity in the column with older apps that attempt to trigger updates in the background.
App History Tab – Additional Columns
Optionally, you can right-click any of the existing columns to activate the following columns:
- Non-metered Network: Total data usage on non-metered networks.
- Downloads: Overall data usage related to downloads performed by apps.
- Uploads: Overall data usage related to uploads performed by apps.
App History Tab – Contextual Options
Right-clicking an app reveals the following options:
- Search online: If an app appears unfamiliar, select this option to perform a cursory check online.
- Properties: Open the Properties pane of the app’s main executable file.
The Startup Tab
The Startup tab in the Task Manager lists every app that loads at computer startup. Since multiple start programs can adversely impact the operating system’s performance, you can use this tab to manage them.
Startup Tab – Default Columns
The startup tab lists the following columns:
- Name: The name of the startup program.
- Publisher: The program’s publisher.
- Status: The program’s status ( Enabled or Disabled ).
- Startup Impact: The startup impact of the program ( Low, Normal, High, or Very High ).
Startup Tab – Contextual Options
- Enable / Disable : Enable or disable the startup program.
- Open file location: Opens the program’s executable file in a File Explorer window.
- Search online : Perform a search of the program online.
- Properties : Open the Properties pane of the program’s executable file.
Startup Tab – Additional Columns
You can also right-click an existing column to activate any of the following columns:
- Startup type: The startup source of the program (the system registry or the Startup folder in Windows ).
- Disk I/O at startup: The amount of disk activity in megabytes related to the process at startup.
- CPU at startup: The impact on CPU usage at startup.
- Running now: Reveals if the program is running at the moment or not.
- Disabled time: The time since you last disabled the program.
- Command line: Displays the program’s command line path, including any options and variables related to it.
The Users Tab
The Users tab in the Task Manager displays a list of all users on your computer. It’s similar to the Processes tab, except that you can view resource usage by user.
Users Tab – Default Columns
You can find the following columns within the tab:
- User : Lists the names of signed-in users. Double-click a name to reveal all processes related to the user.
- Status : Displays the status of each process for a user, including if the processes are suspended or not.
The CPU , Memory , Disk , Network , GPU , and GPU engine are essentially the same compared to what you see on the Processes tab.
Users Tab – Additional Columns
Right-clicking an existing column allows you to activate additional columns:
- ID: The user’s ID.
- Session: The session duration of the user.
- Client Name: The user’s hostname (if the user connects to your PC via a remote connection).
Users Tab – Contextual Options
Right-clicking a user reveals the following contextual actions:
- Expand : Reveal processes related to the user account.
- Connect : Switch to the user account by inserting its password.
- Sign off : Forcibly signs off the user and may result in data loss.
- Send message: Send a message to the user. Enter a title and message and select OK .
- Switch user account : Switch to the user account.
- Manage user account : Opens the User Accounts screen in the Control Panel .
The Details Tab
The Details tab offers an expanded view of all processes on your computer, including those from other user accounts. It’s similar to the Processes tab from the Task Manager in Windows 7 and earlier.
Details Tab – Default Columns
The Details tab is broken down into the following columns:
- Name : Name of the process.
- PID : Unique number assigned to each process.
- Status : Status of the process— Running or Suspended .
- User name : What initiated the process—you, another user, the operating system, etc.
- CPU : CPU activity related to the process.
- Memory : The amount of memory used in kilobytes.
- Architecture : Architecture of the process – 32 or 64-bit .
You can also activate a host of additional columns by right-clicking an existing column and selecting Enable additional columns . However, these are highly technical and best suited for power users, so we won’t go over them here.
Details Tab – Contextual Options
Right-clicking a process reveals the following options:
- End task: Forcibly shut down the process.
- End process tree: End the entire process tree related to the process. This is similar to ending a group of processes in the Processes tab.
- Set priority : Determine the priority given by the CPU to the process compared to others. Options include Realtime , High , Above Normal , Normal , Below Normal , and Low .
- Set affinity: Specify the CPU core or cores used by the process.
- Analyze wait chain: Identify and end other processes that the process is using or waiting to use.
- UAC virtualization: Change the UAC virtualization status. If enabled, it allows processes to write into a virtualized location instead of areas where they don’t have permissions. That could improve compatibility with legacy apps.
- Create dump file: Create a memory dump for troubleshooting purposes.
- Open file location: Open the executable file’s location.
- Search online: Search online for more details about the process or task.
- Properties: Access the executable file’s Properties pane.
- Go to services: Highlight related services within the Services tab.
The Services Tab
The Services tab details every native and third-party service on your PC, such as those related to Windows Update , Bluetooth, the Print Spooler , etc. It lets you start, stop, and restart services.
Services Tab – Default Columns
The services pane consists of the following columns:
- Name : Name of the service.
- PID : Process ID of the service (helpful in identifying the service-related process).
- Description : Brief description of each service.
- Status : Status of the process ( Running or Stopped ). Some processes may show up as Starting if they appear to be stuck.
- Group : Reveals any related group that a service is a part of.
Services Tab – Contextual Options
Right-clicking a service will reveal the following contextual options:
- Start : Start the service.
- Step : Stop the service.
- Restart : Restart the service.
- Open Services : Opens the Services applet (a utility that provides configuration options for each service).
- Search online : Search online for details about the service.
- Go to details : Switches to the Details tab and highlights the relevant executable (useful for troubleshooting).
Put the Task Manager to Good Use
The Task Manager in Windows 11 is instrumental in identifying how your PC’s various programs and hardware work. Despite being filled with lots of information and options, however, getting a brief understanding of what it takes to shut down troublesome apps and manage resource-heavy processes alone can positively impact day-to-day usage.
Dilum Senevirathne is a freelance tech writer and blogger with three years of experience writing for online technology publications. He specializes in topics related to iOS, iPadOS, macOS, and Google web apps. When he isn't hammering away at his Magic Keyboard, you can catch him binge-watching productivity hacks on YouTube. Read Dilum's Full Bio
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How to Open Windows Task Manager: Menus, Shortcuts, & More
Fast and easy ways to see running apps and services in Windows
Last Updated: March 6, 2023 Tested
Ctrl + Shift + Esc
Ctrl + alt + del, taskbar menu, power user menu, windows search, control panel, run dialog box, command prompt, file explorer, pin to the taskbar, make a desktop shortcut.
This article was co-authored by Luigi Oppido and by wikiHow staff writer, Kyle Smith . Luigi Oppido is the Owner and Operator of Pleasure Point Computers in Santa Cruz, California. Luigi has over 25 years of experience in general computer repair, data recovery, virus removal, and upgrades. He is also the host of the Computer Man Show! broadcasted on KSQD covering central California for over two years. The wikiHow Tech Team also followed the article's instructions and verified that they work. This article has been viewed 348,360 times.
Trying to open the Windows Task Manager to end a process or check your computer's performance? The Task Manager allows you to view various activities that occur on your PC. You can monitor running applications, CPU and RAM usage, startup apps (Windows 8 and 10 only), and services. You can also end unresponsive or frozen applications! This wikiHow article will show you various ways to open the Task Manager in Windows 8, Windows 10, and Windows 11, including quick keyboard shortcuts.
Things You Should Know
- Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to immediately open the Task Manager.
- Alternatively, right-click the Taskbar and select "Task Manager" to open it.
- You can also press Windows Key + X to open the Power User menu and select "Task Manager."
- You're ready to look through your processes and end tasks! Clearing tasks that you don't need to run is a great way to speed up a slow windows computer .
- You're done! You're ready to close unresponsive programs and change process priorities .
- You can also press ⊞ Win + x together to do this.
- Alternatively, press the T keyboard key.
- Windows 8.1 : Press ⊞ Win + Q .  X Trustworthy Source Microsoft Support Technical support and product information from Microsoft. Go to source
- Windows XP : This method will not work.
- You'll need to scroll down past the folders, which are always placed at the top.
- In Windows 11, you may need to click Show more options to access the Create shortcut option.
- For more helpful Windows features, check out how to take a screenshot and how to zoom out the screen . Thanks Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
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- ↑ https://support.microsoft.com/en-ca/help/12445/windows-keyboard-shortcuts
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How to end a task using windows 10's task manager.
Have a stubborn or frozen application in Windows that won't close the usual way? End the task using Task Manager. Here's how.
If you need to force a frozen or buggy application to close in Windows 10, you can end a task easily using Windows' built-in Task Manager utility . Here's how to do it.
First, open Task Manager . To do so, right-click the taskbar and select "Task Manager" from the pop-up menu. Alternately, you can press Ctrl+Shift+Escape to open it, or press Ctrl+Alt+Delete and select "Task Manager" from the screen that appears.
Related: Seven Ways to Open the Windows Task Manager
If Task Manager opens in simple mode and you see the name of the task you'd like to end listed, simply select the app name from the list and click the "End Task" button.
Warning: If you end a task without first saving your work you could lose data. It's best to close the application normally, if possible.
The task will end. If the task isn't listed in simple mode or if you'd like to take a deeper look at what's going on first, click the "More details" button.
Related: Windows Task Manager: The Complete Guide
After expanding Task Manager to show more details, you'll see a list of processes (programs running on your computer) with information about how much CPU , memory , disk activity, and network bandwidth they are using.
In the list of processes, select the task you'd like to force to quit, then click the "End Task" button in the lower-right corner of the window.
Warning: You could lose unsaved work in an application if you end the task without saving your work. Additionally, you can use this window to end important operating system tasks. If you do, Windows may behave unusually until you reboot it.
After that, the program will close. If you find yourself frequently ending the task of a particularly troublesome app, consider updating the app or Windows itself , both of which might solve an underlying bug that is causing the problem. Good luck!
How to use Windows 10 Task Manager to kill processes that drain resources
If your PC is slowing down or apps stop responding, this guide can help find and terminate the processes that are causing the problem, using Task Manager on Windows 10.
The Task Manager is an advanced tool that comes with Windows 10 , and it provides a number of tabs that allow you to monitor the applications, processes and services running on your computer. However, you'll likely find yourself using the Processes tab more than anything else, because it lets you quickly see how system resources are utilized, which can be very helpful when trying to troubleshoot applications or find out why your computer is suddenly slow.
In this Windows 10 guide, we'll walk you through the steps to use Task Manager to identify and stop processes that use excessive system resources, to keep your computer at top speeds.
How to use Task Manager to manage high-resource processes
Opening task manager.
If you want to use Task Manager to view and stop processes with high-resource usage, you first need to know how to open the tool. Here are a few ways to open Task Manager:
- Right-click the Taskbar and click on Task Manager .
- Open Start , do a search for Task Manager and click the result.
- Use the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keyboard shortcut.
- Use the Ctrl + Alt + Del keyboard shortcut and click on Task Manager .
- Use the Windows key + X keyboard shortcut to open the power-user menu and click on Task Manager .
If this is your first time opening Task Manager, the tool will probably open in compact mode, which only lists running applications. Click the More details button to access Task Manager in advanced mode.
Understanding the Processes tab
When you're in advanced mode, you'll see a number of tabs, including "Performance", "App history", "Startup", "Users", "Details", "Services", and the one we're interested in, the "Processes" tab. Typically, the Processes tab is the first place you want to go to detemine which process is draining your computer's resources. This tab lists all the running processes in a single view grouped by "Apps", "Background processes" and "Windows Processes". On Windows 10, you can also find multiple instances or other processes under the same process, which helps you to better understand how they're organized and how they use system resources.
You can always expand a group to see all the processes by clicking the chevron-right icon or by right-clicking the item and selecting Expand . Usually, you'll see groups for Windows processes when opening multiple tabs on your web browser or multiple File Explorer windows, for example.
Identifying processes with high-resource usage
If an application is not responding, a website is taking a long time to load, or your system fan starts getting loud, you can quickly use Task Manager to troubleshoot the problem. In the Processes tab, the first thing you want to look at is the percentage of the total resource use for the processor, memory, hard drive and network. You can click the column names to sort the list and bring to the top the ones using the most resources. If you see any of these resources running high (90 percent or higher), you might have found the problem.
Task Manager also uses colors to highlight processes that use the most resources. You'll notice that as a process starts to consume more resources, the color begins to change from a light- to a dark-shade of orange, making it easier to tell which one is causing the problem.
Typically, when you're not actively using applications and your computer isn't working on anything specific, such as maintenance, your total CPU usage should be less than 30 percent . Applications that are running, even if you're not using them, and processes use part of your computer's memory, and that usage will increase as you use or launch more applications. Memory usually won't be an issue unless you run out of it, in which case your computer will start using virtual memory, and that can cause your PC to slow down. Generally speaking, depending on your system configuration, your total memory usage should be below 60 percent . If you're not copying files or rendering videos, disk usage should be below 5 percent .
Network connectivity is almost never the reason your system is slow, but there could be a problem in the network causing web content to take a long time to load. If you're having problems downloading files, and you see "Network" stuck at 0 percent , you may have an idea of what's going on.
Stopping processes with high-resource usage
After you identify the problem, right-click the process, and select End task to terminate it. Alternatively, you can simply select the item and click the End task button in the bottom-right corner.
While stopping a process using the Task Manager will most likely stabilize your computer, ending a process can completely close an application or crash your computer, and you could lose any unsaved data. It's always recommended to save your data before killing a process, if possible.
If you're not sure about how the process you're trying to terminate affects your PC, you can right-click it, and select the Search online option. This action opens your web browser and displays a search result with more information about the process. Windows 10 is also smart enough to let you know if you're about to end an essential system process that can crash your computer.
Wrapping things up
Although there are many other ways to troubleshoot system performance, Task Manager gives you an easy way to find out at a glance why your computer is slow or if an app is not responding, and then quickly act on it. You can end an application that isn't responding using Task Manager in compact mode, but the advanced view gives you more information about processes that are acting up in Windows 10.
More Windows 10 resources
For more help articles, coverage, and answers to common Windows 10 questions, visit the following resources:
- Windows 10 on Windows Central – All you need to know
- Windows 10 help, tips, and tricks
- Windows 10 forums on Windows Central
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Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.
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How to open Task Manager in Windows
Most Windows users will be familiar with this problem: Their computer noticeably slows down and the execution of programs or processes grinds to a halt, yet, they can’t see which application is causing the slowdown . In some cases, open windows freeze and stop responding to your commands.
If this sounds familiar, the Windows operating system series (as of Windows 2000) provides a practical tool to help you: the Windows Task Manager. This handy program provides an overview of all running processes alongside information about the computer’s power consumption. We’ll show you the options for opening the Task Manager.
What is Windows Task Manager?
Opening task manager with a shortcut, start task manager from the “run” dialog window, how to launch windows task manager from the taskbar’s context menu, starting the task manager via the windows icon’s context menu, using the search function to call up the task manager.
When a user launches and uses one or several programs, these user-controlled processes join a whole host of default processes that are already running in the background. Typically, a browser with several tabs, a text editor with an open document, an email client, a graphics program, and software for playing background music may all run at the same time. Though it’s true that these applications are clearly visible via their distinct symbol on the taskbar , their exact influence on PC performance cannot be discerned at first glance.
The Windows Task Manager gets rid of this uncertainty by offering an overview of all applications running in the background . When you discover an unnecessary process, you also have the option of ending this directly from the Task Manager. The practical tool provides detailed information on individual processes. Below you can see a quick overview of the most important tasks in the Task Manager:
- A process’s CPU and memory utilization (CPU is the abbreviation for “Central Processing Unit” and denotes your computer’s main processor)
- A process’s data carrier utilization
- Network load triggered by a process
- A process’s power consumption
- A list of programs in which autostart is activated
This information allows you to spot a program running at high capacity that you do not even need or use . You can deactivate these directly from within the Task Manager or uninstall them from your computer.
Open Task Manager with your mouse, keyboard or a shortcut
Windows offers several options for opening the Task Manager. The handy program can be called up using your mouse, your keyboard, or a nifty Task Manager key combination. The option you go for depends on your personal preference . If your operating system is no longer responding properly, however, opening the Task Manager is the way to go. This is the case if all programs and windows are frozen.
Below, we explain the various options for opening the Task Manager. The instructions and pictures refer to Windows 10 , however, they also apply to Windows 7 and 8 with only a few changes.
Are you not sure which Windows version you are using? Check out our article “Find Out Your Windows Version” to see the version you’re currently using in just a few steps.
Key combinations are usually the quickest option for accessing applications. Task Manager is no different. When you press the three keys [ctrl] + [alt] + [del] at the same time, Windows will open a simple menu on a plain background. Select the “ Task Manager ” option in this menu to launch Task Manager in a new window.
If you use Windows 7, this option is displayed under “Start Task Manager” in the menu.
However, Windows also offers a quick and easy Task Manager key combination that will take you straight to the tool . For this, hold down the [ctrl] + [shift] + [esc] keys at the same time. Task Manager will then open automatically without requiring any further mouse clicks.
You can also open the Windows Task Manager using the “Run” dialog window – the tool you may have used to send short text commands to the operating system. You can bring it up either by opening the Start menu (by clicking the Windows icon) and clicking the “Run” button, or by pressing the [Windows] + [R] key combination.
Enter the “ taskmgr ” command and click “OK” to immediately open the Task Manager.
You don’t necessarily need a keyboard in order to open the Task Manager. Starting the program from the context menu allows you to manage it without a single keystroke. To do this, first right-click on the taskbar in order to call up the context menu. In this, select the “Task Manager” option with the left mouse button. The same function is displayed to users of Windows 7 as “Start Task Manager”.
From Windows 8 , you can also start the process manager from the context menu that you can call up via the Windows icon. Just like the previous option, no keyboard is necessary for this. In order to open the Windows button’s context menu, just right-click on the Windows icon – this can usually be found in the left-hand corner of the taskbar. The context menu will launch. Another way to open this menu is by using the keyboard shortcut [Windows] + [X] . Either way, the next – and final – step is to select the “Task Manager” option.
Finally, Windows also provides the option of searching your whole computer for content of all types. You can use this option to find and open the Task Manager quickly. In Windows 10, the search field is usually located directly on the taskbar (otherwise in the Start menu).
Enter the search term “ Task Manager ”. The displayed search results will update automatically as you enter it. As soon as the appropriate result appears, select it with a left-click in the “Best Match” field or click on “ Open ” in the right field as shown below.
Can’t find the search function in your taskbar? Right-click on the bar, then open the “Search” menu and select the “Display search field” option with the left mouse button. The search field will appear on your taskbar.
If you use Windows 7 or 8 : Open the Start menu with a left-click on the Windows button. In Windows 7, the search bar becomes immediately visible. Enter the search term as described above then hit the Enter key on your keyboard. In Windows 8, you won’t see an entry field, but you don’t need one. Just open the start menu and type in your search term. The operating system will automatically perform the search and show you the results.
If the Task Manager is already open, you can also pin it to the taskbar for easy access if you like. To do this, right-click on the Task Manager symbol on the taskbar and select the option “Pin to the taskbar” with a left-click. This will allow you to open the Task Manager in just one click at any time.
How to open the Task Manager on Mac and monitor load
As in Windows, there is a shortcut that opens the Apple Task Manager. However, unlike the Windows version, the Mac Task Manager only lets you close programs. It doesn’t show you CPU load or energy usage. If you want to check these stats, you need to access the Mac Activity Monitor instead.
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What is Windows 11 Task Manager?
Not sure what to do if your system suddenly slows down or you suspect undetected malware? Windows 11 Task Manager can help you manage your system by providing an overview of running processes and programs. This lets you quickly identify suspicious processes, or programs that are computationally intensive. Keep on reading to find out how to use Windows 11 Task Manager.
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9 Ways to Open Task Manager in Windows 10
In the Task Manager (see picture below), you are able to check all the running tasks, end any task and so forth. Thus, it is necessary to learn how to open it on your PC. For your convenience, this text lists 9 methods to open Task Manager in Windows 10 .
Video guide on how to open Task Manager in Windows 10:
9 ways to open Task Manager in Windows 10:
Way 1: Open the app through taskbar.
Right-click blank area on the taskbar, and choose Task Manager in the context menu.
Way 2: Turn on Task Manager from Quick Access Menu.
Right-tap the lower-left corner to open the menu, and then select Task Manager on it.
Way 3: Open Task Manager in Start Menu.
Step 1 : Tap the bottom-left Start button and choose All Apps in the menu.
Step 2 : Open the Windows System folder.
Step 3 : Click Task Manager to open it.
Way 4: Open this program in Control Panel.
Step 1 : Enter Control Panel .
Step 2 : Input task manager in the upper-right search box, and tap Task Manager in the results.
Way 5: Start Task Manager via Run.
Press Windows+R to open Run dialog, enter taskmgr and tap OK .
Way 6: Open the program from Search panel.
Step 1 : Press Windows+C to open Charms Menu, and choose Search on it.
Step 2 : Enter task and click Task Manager .
Tip : There are two options named Task Manager on the Search Panel, and you can choose either of them.
Way 7: Access Task Manager with the help of Command Prompt.
Step 1 : Click the Start button , enter cmd in the empty box and tap Command Prompt .
Step 2 : Type taskmgr and press Enter .
Way 8: Open it through Windows PowerShell.
Step 1 : Tap the Search button on the taskbar, type windows powershell and click Windows PowerShell to enter it.
Step 2 : Input taskmgr and hit Enter .
Way 9: Open Task Manager from Ctrl+Alt+Del options.
Press Ctrl+Alt+Del and choose Task Manager from the choices.
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- Task Manager Disabled by Administrator | What to Do
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Windows Task Scheduler Library for Go
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NOTE: the API is not stable, I reserve the right to change it before v1.0. Task Scheduler is complex, and it is difficult to create a sane, useable interface for it. I would highly encourage you to make use of Go modules and pin a specific commit.
What is taskmaster?
Taskmaster is a library for managing Scheduled Tasks in Windows. It allows you to easily create, modify, delete, execute, kill, and view scheduled tasks, on your local machine or on a remote one. It provides much more speed and power than using the native Task Scheduler GUI in Windows, and the Scheduled Task Powershell cmdlets.
Because taskmaster interfaces directly with Task Scheduler COM objects, it allows you to do things you can't do with the Task Scheduler GUI or Powershell cmdlets. COM handler task actions can be viewed, manipulated, and created, more settings can be used when creating or modifying scheduled tasks, etc. Taskmaster exposes the full potential of Windows Scheduled Tasks in a clean, simple interface.
As I was researching the Task Scheduler COM interface more and more, I quickly realized just how complex and confusing all the different parts of Task Scheduler are. So I set out to concisely copy the documentation from MSDN into taskmaster, but also consolidate it and add information that is buried in the depths of MSDN. This should make using both taskmaster and the existing Task Scheduler tools easier, having a ton of information and links to Task Scheduler internals available via GoDocs. If you find info that I missed, feel free to submit an issue or better yet open a PR :)
There are a lot of hidden gotchas and quirks within Task Scheduler, so I would highly recommend perusing the official docs before attempting really anything with this library on MSDN .
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- Trivia TaskMaster Us is the only TaskMaster currently (2023) to not have prize task at the start of each episode that give points for it. They have a prize, but no prize task. Instead TaskMaster Us choices one individual to bring a prize for the end of the episode. The quality of the prize does not matter as no points are given.
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