Internet Explorer Hangs with a Not Responding Message

You have a dozen different websites loaded in Internet Explorer and suddenly the browser freezes up. The menu bar, the close button and all the tabs become unresponsive so what can you do to restore the session?

Internet Explorer (version 8) features “automatic crash recovery” so if a single tab crashes due to, say, a bad plug-n, IE will automatically restart that tab alone without touching the other open websites.

However, when the entire browser comes to a halt, try this tip.

iexplore.exe in Task Manager

  1. Start the task manager (Alt + Ctrl + Del) and sort the process list by “memory.” Now select iexplore.exe processes that are consuming the least amount of memory (from bottom to top) and end them one by one by hitting the delete key.
  2. Your frozen IE application should terminate in the second or third attempt. Restart the IE browser and it will show a dialog asking you to confirm whether you really want to restore the previously open websites – say Yes and that’s it!

This trick comes very handy when you have dozens of iexplore.exe processes listed in task manager or when you are running multiple instances of Internet Explorer and only one of them has become unresponsive while others are working normally. I don’t know the logic but the trick always works for me.