Task Manager & Process Explorer question

This week, I had trouble shutting down Firefox. Usually, I use Task Manager (Windows XP SP3) to kill the process. However, it kept going and I kept getting the “End Now” box. So, I used Process Explorer to shut it down. When I used CCleaner to clean the cache, I noticed it was only 4 files (21 KB) instead of the usual 50-60 MB. I’m trying to understand why? What does Process Explorer do differently from Task Manager that would cause this?

Are you using the Processes tab of Task Manager, or just pressing “End Task” on the Applications tab? The latter is different in that it sends a regular close message first (as if you’d clicked the X in the upper right hand corner), and then gives the “End Now” dialog box if the program has not finished shutting down.

Process Explorer works like the Processes tab.

As for the cache: do you have Firefox set to delete it on close? If so, it probably got it deleted before you were able to clean the cache. If not, then it’s probably a coincidence, and you shut down Firefox while it was in the middle of using the cache, and thus corrupted it. It wouldn’t matter how you shut it down.

Also, I would suggest upgrading to Firefox 4, as that lessened the problem. (What fixed it was getting more RAM.)