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Windows 7: Save-as dialog freezes when browing to desktop

27 Nov 2012   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
Save-as dialog freezes when browing to desktop

G'day everyone

I recently bought WD MyBookLive and I'm busy figuring out how to set it up. I'm confident that my problem has to do with the fact that I've mapped drives to the external backup drive.

My problem is this: Whenever I use the Save-as dialog and I click the "Desktop" button so that I can save to the Desktop, the dialog freezes up for a while. Sometims, the dialog itself is not frozen (i.e. I can press Cancel to dismiss it) but the display where the icons from the Desktop are supposed to appear, remains blank. Sometimes, however, both the dialog and the program from which I called it freezes. If I wait long enough, the icons appear, and I can proceed with saving the file or navigating to subfolders on my desktop.

This has only started today, after I started mapping drives. I don't think it has to do with WD's software because I had installed those yesterday and didn't notice this problem.

Thing is, even if I disconnect all my mapped drives, the Save-as dialog problem remains. Rebooting has no effect. It is as if Windows is trying to access some resource before it will show me the desktop icons, and it takes a long while for Windows to realise that it can't access that resource (or perhaps it just takes long to access it).

This does not happen to all Save-as dialogs -- only to the types of Save-as dialogs that are non-resizeable and that show the five shortcut icons on the left (Recent Places, Desktop, Libraries, Computer, Network). I can actually save a file to the Desktop immediately, but I can't see the files on the desktop (in the dialog) nor can I browse to other folders from there, until I wait a long while.

Oh, the same applies to Open-file dialogs -- the ones that look similar to the misbehaving Save-as dialogs have the same problem. If I want to open a file using such a dialog I have to wait a minute or two before the list of files display, or I can manually type in the file name and press "Open", and it will open the file.

I'm using Windows 7 HP 64-bit.

I do an awful lot of saving and opening of files, and I can't afford to take a coffee-break every time I save or open a file.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Nov 2012   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

Okay, I'm discovering more about this problem. Apparently there are more than one type of Save-as dialog with icons on the left-hand side. My PDF program's Save-As dialog has icons for Recent Places, Desktop, Libraries, Computer, and Network. That Save-as dialog doesn't freeze the program, and I can click on the other icons (e.g. I can go to Computer or Libraries), but the Desktop itself doesn't show its icons. My word processor's Save-as dialog, on the other hand, have icons for My Recent Documents, Desktop, My Documents, My Computer and My Network Places. That dialog freezes the wordprocessor also. If I wait a minute or two, it wakes up again, and I can proceed with saving.

For the Save-as dialogs with "Libraries" as an option, I have a temporary solution: simply create a new library and put the entire desktop in it. Then I have instant access to the desktop by simply using the Library icon instead of the Desktop icon.

I have no solution for the other Save-as dialogs (the ones that don't have a Libraries icon).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Nov 2012   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

Oh, wait... I have also installed backup software this morning. I now see some extra processes running (I regularly check what processes are running) that I'm fairly certain was not there a week ago. These include vssvc.exe, searchfilterhost.exe and searchprotocolhost.exe. I wonder if these processes have anything to do with the freezes.


Added later: No, disabling all of these services has no effect.

I've also learnt that the PDF's program's save-as dialog's icons is called the "Places Bar", and that I can customise it. Customising it has no effect on my problem -- the Desktop icons don't show up. Customising the Places Bar does not change the icons on the word processor's save-as dialog, though, so that must be called something else.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 Nov 2012   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit

Well, I've done a system restore, defragged, cleaned, cleared, uninstalled, done stuff, etc, etc, but it would appear that this problem has nothing to do with my new external hard drive and is just something that is now the state of my computer that I must just accept. I could find no solution for it. My computer has never been so optimised and cleaned, but the save-as dialog problem remains. I'll just have to learn never to visit the desktop directly from the save-as dialog.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Feb 2013   #5

Win7 prof. x64

Try to move all files and folders from your desktop to other location (i.e. c:\random_folder_name).
Worked for me. Had this problem in firefox and chrome "Save As". The freezing, however, was not full, I could press "Save" button and the file was saved normally.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Save-as dialog freezes when browing to desktop

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