16 Feb 2010

Shell extensions, the root of a lot of problems

In one of my computers, the simple action of creating a new folder or renaming a file was taking a lot of time. Windows Explorer seemed to freeze for a variable amount of time. Sometimes a few seconds sometimes as long a one minute!

Obviously some shell extension was the culprit, but which one? The idea of uninstalling one by one was discouraging, so I lived for a while with the problem until I found this little tool:



The ShellExView utility displays the details of shell extensions installed on your computer, and allows you to easily disable and enable each shell extensions.

It literally save me a lot of time. You need to run this tool as an Administrator if you want to disable any shell extension.

It turns out that the shell extension that was causing the slow down was TortoiseSVN. For some reason it doesn’t seem to work well on my Windows 7 x64 computer. It does work ok on my laptop (W7 x86).

Time to update to the lastest version and review my settings.

Note: Installing TortoiseSVN’s latest version solved the problem, but I needed to run ShellExView again to enable it again.