HOW-TO : Exit Windows Explorer in Windows Vista

If for whatever reason you need to restart the Windows Explorer process in Windows Vista but do not feel comfortable with manually ending the task, you can gracefully exit Windows Explorer by performing the following actions:

  1. Click on the Start button.
  2. Hold down CTRL + Shift on your keyboard.
  3. Right click on an empty area on the Start menu.
  4. Select "Exit Explorer".

To re-open Windows Explorer:

  1. Hold down CTRL + Shift on your keyboard and tap the Esc key.
  2. Click on File, and then select "New Task (Run…)"
  3. Type "explorer.exe" and press OK or hit Enter on your keyboard.