Sunday Nov 22, 2009

Slow context menu on Windows

Most people get a virus/cold during the winter since they spend more time indoors interacting with each other. One could validate this fact by doing a study where introverted folks are compared with the ones that are more social. Anyway, during the cold (relatively since I live in California) season I got a case "slow context menu" any time I right-mouse-click in a Windows folder. My computer has been socialized with a bunch of 3rd party software, in addition to its native Vista OS. The kind of software I've installed tends to be geeky: Visual Studio.NET, NetBeans, Eclipse, SmartSVN, cygwin, Filezilla, Java, Mercurial, SQL Server, RealVNC, etc. So which software has been causing me the ... ailment. 

At first I searched the registry for "contextmenu". I found lots of entries and gave up after inspecting about a dozen. The internet came to rescue, once again. I found a great utility from the folks at NirSoft. Their utility (ShellExView) helped me to rapidly analyze the shell extensions on my system and I started to turn off the ones which did not come from Microsoft. I rapidly found the cause: SmartSVN (I've been using SVN for zembly and the Java Store). Once I've disabled the extension name every started to work fine (pop-up menus are snappy once again). I'll have to default to the client that NetBeans installs.

Many thanks for the folks at Nir Sofer for making the software available for free.

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