Multiple open and running windows on your desktop or laptop can lead the system to become slow and even face some errors. So you might wonder: can I stop all the processes running or kill all open applications in Windows 10?

Perhaps in seeking to terminate all running processes, the first thing you’re considering is forceful restarting. Forget about doing it – forceful restarting could lead to computer and system files damage. Instead, follow these methods on how to kill all the processes in Windows 10 properly:

Through the Command Prompt

Learn how to terminate Windows 10 processes in the Command Prompt, particularly unresponding ones. Do this through the following steps:

  • Go to Search. Type cmd and open Command Prompt.
  • Once there, enter this line taskkill /f /fi “status eq not responding” and then press Enter.
  • This command should end all processes deemed unresponding

Via Task Manager

More recent Windows 10 versions have related processed bundled under a common cluster. End all the processes under a single cluster through right-clicking on that cluster and choosing End Task.

Use CloseAll and other powerful tools

Freeware tool CloseAll is third-party software that automatically closes all running processes, leaving the user on Desktop. Simply open it and then press OK. KillThemAll, a creation of a Neowin user, also does the same task but gives users a chance to save their data. Take note, though, that it leaves Explorer.exe open.

Use PowerShell

Kill a process that runs elevated by opening PowerShell as Administrator. Type the command Get-Process for you to see the list of running processes. Kill a process by its name by executing this cmdlet: Stop-Process -Name “ProcessName” -Force. Kill a process by its PID by running this command: Stop-Process -ID PID -Force.

Clean boot your computer – This technique allows you to start Windows through only a minimal number of drivers and programs. However, you would need to restart your PC in order to get the desired effect. Here are some steps:

  • Go to Start. Type msconfig and then hit Enter.
  • Go to System Configuration. Once there, click on Services, check the Hide All Microsoft services check box, and then click Disable all.
  • Go to Startup. Open Task Manager.
  • Select every startup item and click Disable.
  • Close Task Manager and then restart the computer.

How about if you want to end specific processes, programs, or apps in Windows 10?

Here are particular steps to take:

To end all background processes, go to Settings, Privacy, and then Background Apps. Turn off the Let apps run in the background

To end all Google Chrome processes, go to Settings and then Show advanced settings. Kill all related processes by unchecking Continue running background apps when Google Chrome is closed.

To end all Internet Explorer processes, use the Command Prompt as an administrator. Enter the command taskkill /F /IM iexplore.exe and then press Enter.

How to kill all the processes in Windows 11?

As you can see, stopping all processes on Windows 10 is pretty easy. But how can you do the same on Windows 11?

The new operating system comes with a number of improvements and upgrades. For instance, Windows 11 comes with a new design that features a centered Start menu and Taskbar. There is also a more Mac-like interface in place and lots of fixes for previously reported bugs.

With that, when it comes to quickly stopping all processes on the new OS, you can still use all the same methods as listed above for Windows 10. Namely:

You can stop all processes on Windows 11 via Command Prompt (see how to terminate Windows 11 processes via the Command Prompt above).

You can stop all processes on Windows 11 via Command Prompt

You can also stop all current running processes on Windows 11 via Task Manager, using CloseAll tool and PowerShell and, finally, by performing a clean boot of your PC.

Additionally, you can also set up a hotkey on your Windows 11 for terminating all unresponsive processes on your computer. Here’s how to do that:

  • First, you will need to download the WinHotKey app via your web browser.
  • After you have the WinHotKey app, open the program and follow the prompts of the WinHotKey setup wizard.

Follow the prompts of the WinHotKey setup wizard

Once you have the app, you can assign a hotkey to a Task Kill desktop shortcut. Once you do that, you will be able to instantly terminate all unresponsive processes by simply using the Ctrl + Alt key combo whenever needed.

There you go – it’s fairly easy to learn how to kill all the processes in Windows 10/11 or just a specific group of processes. You can also tune up your computer for peak performance through using tools like Auslogics BoostSpeed, which effectively diagnoses your Windows system, cleans out junk files, restores system stability, and improves speed and performance.

Good luck and we hope you’ll have a smooth PC experience from here!