Under the Windows OS, sometimes a process that has been killed/terminated in a non-graceful way (i.e., not a normal exit) will leave a residual component in the stack, that retains the original PID (Process ID) but has zero private bytes in RAM. If you try to kill/terminate such processes, the system responds with an error message. In the case of a killed Explorer.exe
process which has entered this state, here is an example of such an error message:
Unable to terminate explorer.exe (PID 106484): An attempt was made to access an exiting process.
Below is an extract from a discussion thread from 2007 about this issue from someone wanting to know how to fully delete/clear such a residual process from the list of running processes:
(Copied below sans
I closed an application, but the process remained in the list. I try to stop in from the task manager, but nothing happens. No error messages, process just stays in the list. I try to debug it, but the debugger says:
Unable to attach to the crashing process. The requested operation is not supported.
This happens with VS2008 and some other programs, sometimes.
How to terminate it?
That's one of the reasons I switched to Linux. Though I experienced this problem under Win XP, it seems that it hasn't changet since then. – petersohn Apr 30 '10 at 7:07
According to samba.2283325.n4.nabble.com/… there's exactly the same situation in Linux - processes waiting on the kernel are unkillable. This is one of the reasons I switched to Windows. – ta.speot.is Jun 12 '11 at 2:25 Copied from: windows 7 - How can I kill an unkillable process? - Super User - <https://superuser.com/questions/136272/how-can-i-kill-an-unkillable-process>