Hard Drive Context Menu Hangs Program

I just discovered that right-clicking on a device in the Hard Disk Drives section of This PC now hangs dopus: the cursor changed to the blue 'working' circle but the window stops responding (the "Not Responding" text appears in the window title) and all I can do is Close Program .. the context menu does not appear.

File Explorer is having no problem displaying the context menu and Dopus isn't having trouble with other types of context menu, eg. files and folders.

I am perfectly willing to believe this is not per se a Dopus problem but some problem with a third-party app. context menu registry but kind of hard to discover such a problem, expecially since File Explorer seems fine.

Any ideas how I can deal with this?

Please grab ShellExView (get the 64-bit version, assuming you're using 64-bit Windows) and extract it to somewhere.

  • Double-click it and click on the Type column header to sort by shell extension type. Focus on extensions with the Context Menu type.

  • You can select one or more extensions and right-click them to disable them via the menu that appears.

  • After disabling any extension(s), if Opus is already running then it's best to fully exit it using File > Exit Directory Opus and then re-run it before testing the change. (Otherwise, the problem extension may have already been loaded before it was disabled.)

  • If any Context Menu extensions are related to disk partitioning, backup or defrag tools, try disabling those first. Those have historically been the cause of crashes when right-clicking drive roots.

  • If the problem still happens, try disabling all Context Menu extensions.

  • Assuming the problem then stops, try re-enabling a few at a time until it comes back, in order to isolate the extension causing the crash.

Let us know what you find, and if you're still stuck then there may be some crash dumps which we can take a look at to see if they indicate the component or cause.

(As a side note: Crashes when right-clicking folders which aren't the root of a drive can sometimes be diagnosed faster using other methods, but the drive roots are a little different.)

Okay, that was very helpful, thanks.

It appears that the culprit is AlcoholShellEx64 which I've had installed for years, it's part of the Alocohol DVD ripper/virtual driver which I use to play ancient games that need 'always loaded' media.

Following the steps you listed I disabled all non-Microsoft menu extensions and re-enabled one at a time until Dopus hung .. after disabling that extension Dopus is working fine.

It's no big deal for me to run with it peramently disabled as I actually don't use Alocohol at all now that I've got non-DRMed copies of games I used it for from GoG, but I wonder why Dopus chokes on it rendering drive menus but not file/folder/etc ones, while File Explorer doesn't have the problem at all.

Doesn't seem to be anything new: Directory Opus hangs ocasionaly on right-click properties

The problem is that shell extensions are usually only tested with Explorer, they may make assumptions about how they are called that, while not specified in the API documentation, is reliable when it comes to Explorer but not necessarily other software.

Reporting the problem to Alcohol tech support (as I suggested nine years ago in the other thread!) might be worthwhile.