You can add Open In New Process to the context menu in Windows 10. This will allow you to open a folder in a separate Explorer.exe process. This can be useful in a number of situations. Here is how it can be done.
By default, all File Explorer windows are running in a single process. Folders, virtual locations like This PC, Desktop and the taskbar - all these elements are running in the same Explorer.exe process. If one of windows crashes, the entire Desktop shell will stop working too and Desktop icons with the taskbar will disappear until the explorer.exe process restarts.
Running Explorer in a separate process for the file browser can improve the stability of the Explorer shell. Additionally, it is useful to test Registry tweaks you make as they will be applied directly because every new instance of Explorer will read its settings from the Registry every time you open a new window.
The command Open New Window In New Process is available in the context menu, but not visible unless you press and hold the Shift key on the keyboard.
If you often use this command, you might want to make it visible all the time. There are two ways to do it. The first one is a modification of the default context menu item. The other one is the ability to add a new context menu entry, which has an icon and is visible without holding the Shift key.
To Open add New Window In New Process to the context menu in Windows 10, do the following.
- Open Registry Editor (see how).
- Navigate to the following key:
Tip: You can access the desired Registry key with one click.
- On the right, delete the string value named "Extended".
- Now, create a new string value named "Icon" and set its value data to the following string:
You can download ready-to-use Registry files to avoid manual Registry editing or restore defaults from here:
Alternatively, you can add the appropriate Ribbon command to the context menu. See the following screenshot:
In Notepad, press Ctrl + S or execute the File - Save item from the File menu. This will open the Save dialog. There, type or copy-paste the name "OpenInNewProcess.reg" including quotes. Double quotes are important to ensure that the file will get the "*.reg" extension and not *.reg.txt.
To understand how this tweak works, refer to my previous article where I explained how to add any Ribbon command to the Context menu in Windows 10. See
In short, all the Ribbon commands are stored under this Registry key
You can export the desired command and modify the exported *.Reg in order to add it to the context menu of files, folders, or any other object visible in File Explorer.
To save your time, I made ready-to-use Registry files. You can download them here:
Alternatively, you can use Context Menu Tuner. It will allow you to add any Ribbon command to the context menu.
Select "Open Window in New Process" in the list of available commands, select "Folder" on the right side and click the "Add" button. You can get the app here:
Additionally, please read the following article: How to start File Explorer in a separate process in Windows 10.