Fix Task Host Window Prevents Shut Down in Windows - Windows Basics


Friday, October 21, 2022

Fix Task Host Window Prevents Shut Down in Windows

Are you having trouble shutting down your Windows device because the Task Host window appears? The problem may say "Task Host is stopping background tasks", which means you have to wait for it to complete or close it manually. So what causes this error?

This article will explain why this window acts as a barrier during Windows shutdown and some solutions to solve it.

Why does the Task Host window prevent Windows from shutting down?

The Task Host window prevents the computer from shutting down if there is a problem with Windows automatic updates or if you try to shut it down while an important setting or program with unsaved data is running. It's also possible that some system settings, such as Fast Startup, may be contributing to the problem.

Now that you know what's causing the problem, let's discuss some of the solutions that are most likely to solve the problem. If you apply all of them, you should be able to shut down your computer as easily as usual.

How to fix the Task Host window error that prevents Windows from shutting down

1. Make sure that no important settings or programs with unsaved data are running

Make sure that none of the programs you tried to install but have forgotten are still running on your computer. You may run into problems if you try to shut down your computer midway through the installation process. The same applies if you are trying to shut down your computer without saving some unsaved data from an application.

Therefore, come back from this window, let the installation complete or close it, save any unsaved data, close the application and turn off the device.

When it is not possible to close running programs or applications with unsaved work, you should rule out Windows Update related problems. Here are a few fixes to help you get there.

2. Uninstall any recent Windows updates and reinstall them

The next step is to uninstall any recent updates that were automatically installed to make sure they are not causing the problem.'s guide to uninstalling updates in Windows 10 and 11 will show you how. Remove updates like KB5012170 from the list of recently installed updates as they are known to cause problems.

Once deleted, you will need to reinstall them. To do this, press Windows Key + I and select Windows Update from the left sidebar. Then, click Check for Updates and all available updates will be installed automatically.

3. Complete any pending updates

Make sure there are no pending updates that you have not installed, especially if you have paused Windows automatic updates.

So press Windows Key + I and select Windows Update from the left sidebar. Click the Resume updates button if updates have been paused and Windows will automatically install pending updates.

If you don't see such an option, the Windows Update service is not paused. So click Check for Updates and all available updates will be installed automatically.

4. Installing the update failed manually

There are times when the Windows Update service fails to install specific updates. A failed update can also contribute to the problem under discussion. Ensure Windows Update did not fail to install any updates; if it did, manually install them from the Microsoft Update Catalog. To check failed updates, press Windows Key + I to open the Settings app and select Windows Update from the left sidebar. Next, click Update History. Take note of the name of the failed update and check our guide on manually installing updates from the Microsoft Update Catalog.

5. Run the Windows Update debugger

If the above 3 fixes do not help to fix the problem, you should run the Windows Update troubleshooter. This troubleshooter will automatically find problems with Windows Update and fix them automatically.

1. Right-click the Windows Start button and go to Settings.

2. In the left sidebar, select the System tab.

3. In the right pane, click Troubleshoot.

4. Then click Other trouble-shooters.

5. Right next to the Windows Update troubleshooter, click Run.

6. Turn off conflicting third-party services

Sometimes, Microsoft Update components and third-party services often conflict. Therefore, they may be the cause of the situation under discussion. Therefore, disabling these services can help solve the problem. Follow these steps to turn them off:

1. Open the System Configuration window by typing System Configuration into the Windows search box.

2. Go to the Services tab.

3. Check the Hide all Microsoft services box.

4. To disable all, click Disable all > Apply > OK.

5. When the next prompt appears, click Restart and see if the problem persists.

Hopefully, this fix will prevent the bug under discussion from happening in the future.

7. Turn off Fast Startup

The Fast Startup feature in Windows keeps your device in hibernation when you turn it off. This means that your device does not turn off completely. By disabling this feature, your computer will shut down completely, which can help fix the problem.

1. Open the Control Panel app by searching for it in Windows Search.

2. Go to Hardware and Sound > Power Options.

3. In the left sidebar, click Choose what the power button does.

4. Click Change settings that are currently unavailable.

5. Uncheck the box for Turn on fast start-up (recommended).

6. Click Save changes.

8. Edit Sign-in options

Although less common, disabling automatic setup after an update in the Sign-in options settings can help fix the problem. Follow these steps to apply this fix:

1. To open Settings, press Windows Key + I.

2. In the left sidebar, click Accounts.

3. In the right pane, click Sign-in options.

4. Turn off the toggle next to Use my sign-in info to automatically finish setting up after an update under Additional settings..

9. Disable WpnUserService in Registry Editor

If none of the fixes work, disable WpnUserService in Registry Editor. WpnUserService supports both local and push notifications on Windows. With this feature turned off, you will no longer receive push notifications like the one in question.

1. Open Registry Editor by searching for Registry Editor in Windows Search.

2. In the Registry Editor navigator, paste the following path:

3. Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\WpnUserService

4. Click on the DWORD value named Start.

5. In the Value data field, enter 4.

It's important to note that this fix will only disable notifications; background processes (or problems with Windows Update) that resulted in this message will continue to run. Either way, you'll accomplish your goal: Turn off your computer without getting this message.

Hopefully, following the fixes in this article will help you fix the problem and safely shut down your computer. If you're still having issues with your PC not shutting down properly after applying the fixes above, it could be an issue with the Shutdown process itself.

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