Sometimes, a program freezes, or locks up, and you need a way to close it. If clicking File -> Close or the ‘X’ button doesn’t work, you’ll want to “End the Task” to break free. Ending the Task will help you avoid a full reboot, and you should know your End Task options. Not to sound like a listicle, but the last one on this post may blow your mind!

Task Manager

Press Control + Shift + Esc to make the Task Manager appear. Once you have Task Manager open, feel free to right-click on any line item and then left-click End Task. That app should soon close.

If you’re old-school, you may have Control + Alt + Del come to your mind. And that still works, but you’ll have to click Task Manager on the screen that appears. Not a problem, just an extra step.

Keyboard Shortcut

If an app has locked up and is still foremost on your screen, try to press Alt + F4 on your keyboard. In many cases, this will act as an End Task for the active program.

Windows Settings

Maybe you have an app that is all locked up and you can’t quite see it or identify it in Task Manager. Some apps can be ended through the Settings Panel:

Start -> Settings -> Apps -> Installed Apps

Once here, scroll down the list of all of your programs. Select an app and click the 3-dots to the right of it. If it can be ended here, you’ll have an option for Advanced Options. Click that and then look for the Terminate button.

Directly from the Taskbar

End Task Options

Windows 11 allows you to End Task right from the Taskbar. But this feature must be turned on, first. Go to:

Start -> Settings -> System -> For Developers

In here, find the option for End Task and turn it on. Now, if you need to End a Task, simply right-click the app’s icon on your Taskbar, and you’ll have End Task as an option to click on!