Why does Windows Explorer take so long in Windows 7

I've recently installed Windows 7 64 bit on my PC.

I've noticed now and again Windows Explorer seems to hang and I'm unable to expand directories etc. as the cursor just shows a timer (spinning circle).

If I close Windows Explorer and re-start it, then it only shows Favorites, Libraries and Homegroup!

Trying to reboot the PC also gives problems and it simply hangs when in this state and it is necessary for me to press the reset button.

Any idea what is going on?  I really like Windows 7 but this is making it difficult and frustrating to use.
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DonNetwork AdministratorCommented:
How did you install the install/upgrade Windows 7?
I had this problem when I did the in place upgrade from Vista.
What I wound up doing was a clean install from the boot CD of Windows 7 and everything worked fine.

I don't know why it messes up or how to fix it other than a clean install.
System works great now.
MilleniumaireAuthor Commented:

I did a clean install into a new, formatted partition.  I also installed Windows 7 Ultimate on my laptop and that isn't having the same problem as my desktop!


This is a brand new install of Windows 7 Ultimate that I did a couple of weeks ago.  I've spent a lot of time over the last two weeks installing all the software I use.  If this is causing performance issues already then Windows 7 is a dud and will never work ;-)  I don't believe this is the case because as long as I don't use Windows Explorer everything runs fine.  It seems to be the progressive use of Windows Explorer that causes the problem i.e. after a reboot I can use it 2, 3 or 4 times, but eventually it will show the dreaded timer and stop responding.  From that point onwards it is useless and the only way I've found to fix it is to reboot (forced by having to press the reset button).  Even while the timer is showing in Windows Explorer (and it isn't responding) I can use all other applications as normal.
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Can you post your current system information here. You can access it by typing " System Information " or " msinfo32 " in the search bar.
MilleniumaireAuthor Commented:
System Summary is:

OS Name      Microsoft Windows 7 Ultimate
Version      6.1.7600 Build 7600
Other OS Description       Not Available
OS Manufacturer      Microsoft Corporation
System Name      LCSSERVER
System Manufacturer      Gigabyte Technology Co., Ltd.
System Model      X38-DS5
System Type      x64-based PC
Processor      Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU     E8400  @ 3.00GHz, 3000 Mhz, 2 Core(s), 2 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date      Award Software International, Inc. F6, 27/02/2008
SMBIOS Version      2.4
Windows Directory      C:\Windows
System Directory      C:\Windows\system32
Boot Device      \Device\HarddiskVolume1
Locale      United Kingdom
Hardware Abstraction Layer      Version = "6.1.7600.16385"
User Name      LCSServer\Paul
Time Zone      GMT Daylight Time
Installed Physical Memory (RAM)      4.00 GB
Total Physical Memory      4.00 GB
Available Physical Memory      2.63 GB
Total Virtual Memory      8.00 GB
Available Virtual Memory      6.49 GB
Page File Space      4.00 GB
Page File      C:\pagefile.sys

Have you tried the following?
1) Defragmenting your computer
2) Disk Cleanup
3) chkdsk /f
4) sfc /scannow
You may get errors while doing step 3 and 4. Windows will fix it automatically and you should get a faster Windows after this.
MilleniumaireAuthor Commented:
Hi brandongohwh,

I followed your suggestions.  Not much fragmentation on any drive (0% on most), but defrag'd anyway.  Other scans found nothing.

Problem is still occurring.
Oddly enough I read through one of the updates my system installed tonight and it addresses something to with Explorer  KB980408

Not sure it it's relevant or not.
MilleniumaireAuthor Commented:
David, thanks for the pointer.  Although it does mention Windows Explorer it doesn't sound like any of the fixes are for the same problem I'm having.  Having said that I'll check my system when I get home and make sure it is installed.
MilleniumaireAuthor Commented:
I think I've cured the problem!

I have removed some network mappings that I created to my network storage device (cube station) and the problem appears to have gone away.  When I create them again I start to have problems with Windows Explorer hanging.  It seems Windows 7 is struggling to connect to this device although it never comes back with any errors, it just takes forever.

I've noticed other network issues also, such as the Network node in Windows Explorer not showing the devices attached to the network and the Network Map not finding devices.

It seems that compared to Windows XP, networking on Windows 7 leaves a lot to be desired.
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