How to Force Quit a Program on Windows 11

How to Force Quit a Program on Windows 11

We experience screen or program freezing problems at least once when using the PC or laptop on a random day. The system further restricts any further action from us while holding every one of our tasks up for a long time. That’s when you try to force close a program in Windows 11, first with the mouse or touchpad and then with the shortcut keys you may know or by just randomly banging the keyboard keys. It is indeed a frustrating experience during office hours or when you are chilling while watching a fun movie on Netflix. So to get rid of this problem at the earliest, we have compiled some methods that will give you enough ideas about how to force quit a program on Windows 11 PC. Read on further to understand each method comprehensively.

How to Force Quit a Program on Windows 11

How to Force Quit/Close a Program on Windows 11

Before getting our hands on the methods, we should learn some reasons leading us to force close a program in Windows 11:

  • A program might misbehave and freeze if it does not get enough amount of memory to function properly.
  • It also happens when there is discordant behavior between system programs and hardware, leading to configuration issues.
  • Windows also freeze a particular program deliberately if it breaches the security or puts excessive load on other crucial Windows processes. 
  • Corrupt system files and outdated drivers also feed to the program freezing issue on Windows.

So now, let us get to the point where you will see how to force quit a program on Windows 11 desktops/laptops.

Method 1: Via Task View

Windows 11 Task View can also be easily used to kill a frozen app. To do that, follow these steps:

1. Press the Alt + Tab keys combination from the keyboard to open the Task View with current running apps.

Press the keyboard keys combination Alt + Tab to open the Task View with current running apps | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

2. Locate the unresponsive app and hover to the top right corner of it to find the red cross icon and click on it to eliminate the app.

Locate the unresponsive app and hover to the top right corner of it to find the red cross icon and click on it to eliminate the app.

3. The application will stop running from that moment. Launch it again to continue using it afresh.

Also Read: Complete List of Windows 11 Run Commands

Method 2: Via Task Manager

Another way to close a frozen program is through the Task Manager. Task manager allows you to choose the program you want to shut immediately. Follow these steps to know more about this method:

1. From the frozen program screen, press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys combination to open the Task Manager.

2. Select the frozen application or task under the Processes tab.

Select the frozen application or task under the Processes tab. | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

3. Now, click on the End task option in the bottom right corner to quit the problematic application.

Now, click on the End task option in the bottom right corner to quit the problematic application.

Also Read: How to Enable or Disable Compact OS in Windows 11

Method 3: Via Run Dialog Box

You can also exit a frozen application with the Run command window. With this, you will know how to force quit a program on Windows 11. To do that, follow these steps:

1. On the frozen screen, press the keys combination Windows + R keys to open the Run command window.

2. Type taskkill /im program.exe /t and press Enter key on the keyboard to run the command.

Note: You have to replace program.exe with the program name you want to force close.We’ve used the Word application for illustration. Hence, the command taskkill /im word.exe /t is shown below.

Type taskkill /im word.exe /t and press Enter key on the keyboard to run the command. | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

3. After running the command, the frozen program will close. This is how to force quit a program on Windows 11 instantly.

Also Read: How to Fix Audio Buzzing in Windows 11

Method 4: Via Command Prompt

Command prompt takes a comprehensive approach to force close a program in Windows 11. It is a quick and easy solution to monitor running tasks and stop them from using less RAM if that’s what caused the freezing in the first place.

1. Search & open Command Prompt window through Search bar as depicted below.

Search Command Prompt through Start menu search and click on Run as administrator to open it

2. Type tasklist in the Command Prompt window and press Enter key on the keyboard to execute it.

Type tasklist in the Command Prompt window and press Enter on the keyboard to execute it.

3. A list of tasks running on the PC will appear. Scroll and locate the non-responsive app task and copy the name.

Note: We have considered the WINWORD.exe task for the illustration as shown below. Please locate and select the frozen task name on your system.

A list of tasks running on the PC will appear. Scroll and locate the non-responsive app task and copy the name.

4. At the bottom of this list, type taskkill/im winword.exe and press Enter key to execute the command.

At the bottom of this list, type taskkill/im winword.exe and press Enter key to execute the command.

Also Read: How to Enable or Disable Mobile Hotspot in Windows 11

Method 5: Restart Windows 11 PC

If none of the above work and answer how to force quit a program on Windows 11 question, you should finally go for a restart.

Note: You should note that by restarting your PC, you may also close down the other essential programs running at that time on your system.

1. Press the Alt + F4 keys on the keyboard to prompt the Shut Down Windows popup.

Press the Alt + F4 key on the keyboard to prompt the Shut Down Windows popup | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

2. Select the Restart option.

Select the Restart option and click on the OK option. | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

3. Click on the OK option and your system will restart in a few seconds afresh.

Click on the OK option and your system will restart in a few seconds afresh. | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

Also Read: How to Create Desktop Shortcuts on Windows 11

Pro Tip: How to Create Customized Shortcut

You can create a shortcut on your desktop, which can be a task killer and use it to solve the how to force quit a program on Windows 11 problem. To do that, follow these steps:

1. Right-click anywhere in the empty space on the desktop. Click New > Shortcut option as shown.

Right-click anywhere in the empty space on the desktop, and click the New option. Then, click the Shortcut option to create a customized desktop shortcut | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

2. In the Create Shortcut window, type taskkill /f /fi “status eq not responding in Type the location of the item field and click on Next as illustrated below.

In the Create Shortcut window, type taskkill /f /fi "status eq not responding against the Browse... option. After typing the mentioned location, click on Next.

3. Next, give a name of your choice (e.g. taskkill) to this shortcut and click on Finish to create the desktop shortcut.

Next, give a name of your choice to this shortcut and click on Finish to create the desktop shortcut | how to force quit a program on Windows 11

4. The shortcut will get created on the desktop. Now, right-click on it and click on the Properties option.

The shortcut will get created on the desktop. Now, right-click on it and click on the Properties option.

5. Type Ctrl + Alt + T in the Shortcut key option box as shown below.

Note 1: Make sure to enter the shortcut key not already assigned to your system for any other function.

Note 2: We have used key for the taskkill shortcut. You can use any key of your choice in place of T. For example, if you want to use Q key, then type Ctrl + Alt + Q in the Shortcut key box.

Type Ctrl + Alt + T in the Shortcut key option box as shown below.

6. After you’re done with this, click on Apply and then OK to set the shortcut.

click on Apply and then OK to set the shortcut

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With this article, we tried to answer your doubts about how to force quit or force close a program on Windows 11 and hope it proved to be of some help to you. Write down which methods were new to you that fixed the problem. Reach out if you got any suggestions for us, put them in the comments section below.

Posted by
Pete Mitchell

Pete is a Senior staff writer at TechCult. Pete loves all things technology and is also an avid DIYer at heart. He has a decade of experience writing how-tos, features, and technology guides on the internet.

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