XP: Windows Explorer Crashes When Opening Folder With Corrupted Video Files

A problem may occur when you open a file in Windows XP that has a corrupted video, image files, HTML pages, or MP3 file, Windows Explorer crashes.

You will need to somehow access this folder so that you can delete or move the offensive file to another location. You will need to unregister 2 DLL’s to prevent the Windows from previewing the file, which is what is actually causing Windows Explorer to crash.

1. Click Start > Run and type regsvr32 /u shimgvw.dll and click OK.

2. Click Start > Run and type regsvr32 /u shmedia.dll and click OK.

3. Delete or move the file that is corrupted.

4. Click Start > Run and type regsvr32 shimgvw.dll and click OK.

5. Click Start > Run and type regsvr32 shmedia.dll and click OK.


  1. Holly says

    OMG if I could hug you I would. I have been plagued with this issue for over a year on a directory with photos of my toddler. I feared they were stuck forever as I had tried every other post on the net regarding this problem and none of them worked.

    Thank you so much for this tip!

  2. Joe says

    Windows XP was released in 2002-2003 was not made to understand ABR or VBR formats. Only update & fixes applied thru the years but not upgraded to understand those above formats. CBRs works every time except with unrecognized characters in tags. They can be fixed with MP3tag utility.

  3. Belfastien says

    Just recently on my Windows 7 – I have a few avi film files within a folder but when trying to access one certain file, windows explorer closes, but no problems opening the other files. What I did which seems to ‘fix’ it – open the folder containing the files/films, highlight all, then properties, then ‘customise’, then ‘optomise this folder for [general Items]‘ (and apply to all sub-folders??) and OK – as I said, this seems to ‘fix’ it (well, the certain file opens with no problem) but I have looked online and seen several different answers and I’m no techie but just thought I’d share this.

  4. Barbara says

    I can’t open my jpg files anymore. when I try it gives me this msg
    File C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\My Documents\My Pictures\file name.jpg cannot be opened When i click the close X it prompts me to insert the CD prog (Home Publish) If I click okay it takes me to the Home Publishing Menu to create cards. Hope you can help it is very frustrating. Thanks

  5. bones1349 says

    I fixed the problem like so

    my videos were playing other wise the files were not corrupted.
    i followed steps 1 and 2 then copied the folder that was giving me problems to another hard drive the did steps 4 and 5 and oula! good as new

  6. cake-end says

    Hi all,
    I have had this problem with a large video file. I found a way around this problem by using a program called ‘Handbrake’ (http://handbrake.fr or just Google ‘Handbrake’). This enabled me to convert it from a .avi to a .mp4 file.

    The video file now plays like a charm, try different settings from within Handbrake before deleting the offending video file. This little program also converts videos to work on Apple products.

    Best of luck,

  7. indianninja says

    You may use safe mode in windows or outright boot from a linux livecd (like ubuntu)(Pretty easy,just boot from cd and wait til you get the UI,) Most likely you shall get to the folder.
    Otherwise follow step 1 and 2.
    Then take backup of files in thumb drive and try to run them in safe mode in windows.

    Here comes the solution for special videos:
    If you can run it, then try to convert it by ABC 3gp converter to MP4.Slight detoriation of quality is a must.
    Otherwise try to edit this video and save by parts,and then join the parts except the corrupt bit that you will be stuck while editing.
    If that fails too,try a software that enhances windows copying ability (i.e does not crash totally when interrupted) and copy it to some other drive.This is useful if it is hard disc problem.
    Later run checkdisc on that drive.

    Besides that , please try to understand that many videos , when corrupt , can be deleted without any regret.Like a downloaded video that is available in the net. That can be redownloaded if the corruption is due to connection(torrents hashfail etc).

  8. Robert Hauser says

    I took steps one and two but did not delete the offending vid clip; instead I combed it with Malware Bytes and AVG and they gave it a clean bill of health, not that that is necessarily any guarantee but it’s the best I can do with what’s here….opened the video and watched, wasn’t that great so THEN I deleted it.
    Apparently on this tower w/ xp svc pk 3, as soon as you try to watch a downloaded video, Windows Explorer jumps right in and “previews” it and if there be any glitches whatsoever in the video data, it freezes up the whole computer—or at least it does mine. So by performing steps 1 and 2, you are stepping on Explorer’s tail and not letting it preemptively jump on the video and screw everything up….but you do not necessarily have to delete the video: a “corrupted” video may or may NOT contain any viruses or any other harmful programs but nonetheless still be “corrupted” enough to derail the Explorer…and with it your whole computer. Stupid of Windows but then what’s new?

  9. Nilesh says

    thanks a ton had searched every but nobody gives this precise information

  10. piyush says

    hmmm… i think it’s working…

    all that i had were movies, deleted the one which was corrupted but it’s still slow.. :|

  11. Carl says

    Another fix which I stumbled on
    Find the folder which when opened causes the re-start
    Right click it
    change folder type template to all items and apply
    worked for me straight away.

  12. Chippie says

    It works! …when I clicked on My Computer (which was freezing on me for the longest time) but then when I started to click a shortcut I had for a specific video, it froze up on me again. So I deleted the shortcut and created another shortcut. Everything seems to work well now.

    Maybe something about old shortcut that need to be renewed. Go figure.

  13. Santosh Kumar says

    amazinggg mannn :)
    simple fixx … copy paste the command n hit enter thts ittttt.. the prob whic ws annoying me since ages is nw now more yeyeye ..:D

  14. magicone58 says

    Thanks mate, worked like a treat. After step 2 I used OJOsoft Total Video Converter and fixed the corrupted video. Deleted the original, then did steps 4 and 5. All good now, Sweet!

  15. robertguero says

    Worked great. Did not delete file. It was a corrupt AVI. Just used AVS Video Converter and just convertered to AVI of which fixed. Did steps 4 & 5. Open folder everythings good. That you very much poster. Good job. Use to have to go thru dos to find out what file was messed up then use the converter. This is so much easier.

    And no if a video is corrupt it can be fixed. Not all of it may come out but it can be fixed. Most times

  16. DaMav says

    Fantastic fix, immediately solved the corrupted file I had and allowed me to delete it. Best solution I’ve seen by far.

  17. Rohan says

    Re: Step 3
    first, if the corrupted file is very important
    one should check if the file can be recovered.

    There are many image and media recovery software.

    The most common problem with media files is the
    lost or broken avi index which can be fix.

    I already experienced this before. I love to download
    video files and most of the time files are corrupted because of using third party software (some says this is usual if you downloaded the file from P2P.
    Email me if you want to know more.

  18. Rickey says

    It did helped me too. But how can I identify a corrupt movie for they do work, and I have many movies, 600 atm.

  19. vasu says

    thanks so much..
    after doing those steps expect deleting my explorer crash problems is sloved..
    i just copied the file to the some other folder…

  20. lordkramdar says

    well windows explorer doesn’t crash now, but there’s no previews for other files as well now. like pictures. opening the picture in the xp photo viewer doesn’t work either.

  21. lordkramdar says

    i guess doing steps 1 and 2 only work. i can manipulate the files now without explorer crashing.


  22. lordkramdar says

    i have the same problem, but i don’t want to delete the videos.

    they work perfectly on my computer in VLC and they work on XBMC perfectly.

    so i’m gonna try doing steps 1 & 2 see if that solves it.

  23. koparoma says

    My problem was opening any file containing video caused XP Explorer to crash. Step 2 stops explorer trying to preview video files (which feature I don’t need) – so I just did that and left it. So far so good.

  24. vps1 says

    thanks for the tips.. but I found that the ‘corrupt’ video files causing the problem are still playable if copied to a CD and run from there!..so if you want to consider keeping the video fiels, might be worth a try trying that before deleting!..

  25. Smith says

    Hi ,
    By doing steps 1 and 2, my issue of crashing got solved.Is steps 3 and 4 is mandatory?

    Thanks and regards

  26. Nick Rogers says

    or you could just delete it from dos… start –> run –> enter “cmd”
    then make your way to the offending directory and use the del command. dos doesn’t preview…

  27. kush says

    hey , i hv XP sp2 but it didn`t worked 4 me..
    its a file of Ieshwiz.exe thats causing the problem ,
    when i tried ur procedure to disable windows explorer , its doesn`t disables, could u plz help

  28. bones says

    Worked for me, i noticed when i opened the dodgy folder that it would stop responding as the thumbnaila were opening on a certain folder. so i deleted this folder. but you could also move files out of folder and see if it still stops responding. like tryn narrow down the problem file.

  29. Brent says

    From my JPG directory, I just deleted the *.dat (created and copied over by my blackberry), *.db and *.gif files from my windows directory, and windows stopped crashing.

  30. Colin says

    A big thankyou for clear and precise instructions that worked. Finding the files to delete between unloading the DLL’s, and then opening the folders where the corrupt files are- and deleting them. Then of course reload the DLL’s as instructed. Shame on Adobe for not being able to advise how to remove corrupt files using Premier 7. Well done!

  31. Frank says

    Actually, this worked perfectly, thankyou. I’m gonna keep this handy by the PC cos this kind of thing has caused me many headaches.

  32. Justin says

    This is of course assuming that you know which file is corrupted. Any way of finding out which one is causing this so it can be removed?

  33. admin says

    Your picture or video is gone if it’s corrupted. Hence you should just delete it. If you can find something that can rebuild corrupted files, more power to you.

  34. DawnTreader says

    Hello All

    dont do this. well actually you can do steps 1, 2, 4, and 5, but step 3 wont solve the problem.

    whoever wrote this needs to figure out how to uncorrupt the file in question and repost this.

    i have 5 video files. they are all necessary and i have to use them in a project. how will deleting them help me?

    doing the 2nd step helped me be able to access them, but deleting them wont be benificial to anyone.

    the poster should really come up with a better solution that solves peoples problems. the poster may not care about your pictures or videoes, and they may seem to know more than you do, but that doesnt mean you should follow thier advise.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>