Memory leak in explorer.exe

I'm running windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit. I leave my computer running 24/7. After a few days explorer.exe has grown to about 250 GB. When it gets above 270 GB, the computer starts missing keystrokes and the network starts rapidly dropping out and reconnecting. Of course; a reboot clears everything. Windows 7 has never made it past 5 days before I have to reboot.
 

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Last updated August 11, 2019 Views 10,991 Applies to:
Sorry. It should read MB instead of GB.

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Hey glc55,

  • What exactly does he mean by the memory leak?
  • Are you referring to explorer.exe file size is 250mb?
  • Wat is the capacity of his hard disk?

Do give us more information on the issue so that it will be helpful for us to understand the issue better and work on the same.

Let’s check the issue in clean boot and check.

To help troubleshoot error messages and other issues, you can start Windows 7 by using a minimal set of drivers and startup programs. This kind of startup is known as a "clean boot." A clean boot helps eliminate software conflicts.

Follow the steps below:

1. Log on to the computer by using an account that has administrator rights.
2. Click Start, type msconfig.exe in the Start Search box, and then press ENTER to start the System Configuration Utility. If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
3. On the General tab, click Selective Startup, and then click to clear the Load startup items check box. (The Use Original Boot.ini check box is unavailable.)
4. On the Services tab, click to select the Hide all Microsoft services check box, and then click Disable all.
5. Click OK, and then click Restart.
6. Check if you still have the issue.

Refer the link below for more details:
How to troubleshoot a problem by performing a clean boot in Windows 7:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929135

Reset the computer to start as usual. After you have finished troubleshooting, follow these steps to reset the computer to start as usual:

a. Click Start , type msconfig.exe in the Start Search box, and then press ENTER.
b. If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
c. On the General tab, click the Normal Startup option, and then click OK.
d. When you are prompted to restart the computer, click Restart.

Also try optimizing Windows Performance.

To optimize Windows performance, try using the Performance troubleshooter to automatically find and fix problems. The Performance troubleshooter checks issues that might slow down your computer's performance, such as how many users are currently logged on to the computer and whether multiple programs are running at the same time.   

1.       Open the Performance troubleshooter by clicking the Start button, and then clicking Control Panel.

2.       In the search box, type troubleshooter, and then click Troubleshooting.

3.       Under System and Security, click Check for performance issues.  

Also try deleting temp files and prefetch files. 

To delete temp files, 

Click on start and in search bar type in as %temp% and hit enter. Delete all the files in that folder. 

Do the same with prefetch files. 

Also take a look at the following: 

Ways to improve your computer's performance 

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/Ways-to-improve-your-computers-performance 

Regards,

Savan – Microsoft Support.

2 people were helped by this reply

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Consider using Autoruns or ShellExView to remove or systematically eliminate shell extensions.  

If you remove  all third-party code from Explorer's address space, and the problem doesn't occur, then the leak would seem to be attributable to some add-on that has been installed.  The referenced utilities can help work toward discovering this.

(FWIW, I'd expect that killing explorer.exe and restarting it with e.g. Task Manager would also workaround the problem, more quickly than a reboot.  Or, just log off and log back in.)

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I've noticed this problem as far back as Win NT. After being logged on for a time the file icons would be messed up. It also happened after copying and moving lots of files.

I spent more time on this on my XP machine, after getting numerous "Out of Resources" messages. I'd restart Explorer and watch it's entry in Task Manager. The thing that would really send the memory usage up was opening Explorer windows where thumbnails were displayed. Best I can tell, that's where the problem is, but it could also be related to displaying icons.

Anyway, restarting Explorer clears the problem for a while.

I haven't had this problem on my Win 8 machine but I don't use it the same way. I did get a call from a client today saying an error occurred while using my software. The Explorer memory leak was behind it. They rarely reboot or log out from that computer. They are using Win 8 and is seems it takes a lot longer for the out-of-resources error to occur, but it still occurs.

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