How do I kill a process or application without using Task Manager?

At times you may not be able to access Task Manager as it may be disabled by a group policy, spyware, etc. If you need to end a process manually then you can do so by using a few utilities through a command prompt.

  • Open a command prompt
  • Type in TASKLIST and press Enter
  • You will get a list of processes currently running on the computer.
  • Open a command prompt and use the TASKKILL utility to end the process.
  • Type in TASKKILL /? to get a list of available commands, however the most common strings used are shown below.
    • TASKKILL /F /IM Control.exe
    • TASKKILL /F /PID 1230
      • /F forces a process to terminate.
      • /IM uses the image name of the process or application
      • /PID uses the process ID to locate and terminate the process.
  • If you receive an error stating that “'tasklist' or 'taskkill' is not recognized as an internal or external command, operable program or batch file” then check the C:\Windows\System32\ folder for tasklist.exe and taskkill.exe. There have been occurrences of viruses deleting or renaming those utilities to further impede a user's ability to remove viruses, malware, and spyware.
  • Entered : 07/26/2010
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