Fix An Unresponsive Windows Explorer Window With The Green Loading Bar

Fix An Unresponsive Windows Explorer Window With The Green Loading Bar

Windows: Sometimes, when you open a folder in Windows Explorer, it takes seemingly forever to open — and you end up watching that slow-moving green bar at the top while everything grinds to a halt. TechSpot has a solution to this problem: turn off folder optimisation.

If you’re getting the green bar of molasses on a local folder, such as the Downloads folder, it may be because Windows Explorer has “optimised” that folder for photos or video and is trying to generate thumbnails for all your files. Luckily, there’s an easy way to turn off this behaviour:

  1. In Windows Explorer, right click the Downloads folder (or any folder you are having issues with), then select Properties.
  2. Select the Customise tab
  3. From the drop-down menu, Optimise this folder for: “General Items”

You may have to do this every once in a while as Windows tries to “re-optimise” that folder. If it happens to you, try out this fix and see if it works!

Fix Windows folder unresponsive/slow behaviour, green loading bar [TechSpot]


  • An explanation of why this works would be nice.

    Basically, depending on the folder ‘type’, Windows will scan for meta-data (such as video duration, etc). It will scan for meta-data every time you open the folder (rather than quickly scanning for new or changed files), which is a pain in the arse. It also doesn’t seem to background this processing, instead doing this processing FIFO holding everything up. Yet again it seems MS’s developers seem to be lacking in common sense or concern for user experience.

    • I though it did only scan for new. Hence the hidden .INI file in every folder.
      Though I must admit this like a lot of other windows issues I’ve never really experienced.

      • Based on the behaviour of my system it looks like it rescans everything. Either that or there is a time-to-live value involved that is quite short (e.g. rescan all items if it’s been more than an hour since the last scan).

        In my experience Windows 8 seems to suffer from this worse than Windows 7 (perhaps looking for more metadata?)

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