Automatically Restart Crashed Or Hanged Applications

Don’t you hate it when programs hang or crash? I find it especially annoying when a background application like an IM client or a bandwidth monitor silently crashes – sometimes I only notice the problem hours later when I’ve already missed a bunch of messages. I’m sure you’ve encountered a few “Not responding” errors and some irritatingly crash-prone applications yourself.

If you have an unstable program that you absolutely need to run at all times, but don’t want to waste your time monitoring and manually restarting it every time it croaks, I might have something interesting for you.

Restart on Crash is an monitoring tool that will watch the applications that you specify and automatically relaunch any program that hangs or crashes. You can add any number of applications to monitor, enable/disable them individually and edit the command line that will be used to restart an application.

Restart on Crash doesn’t require installation and stores all it’s configuration data in a “settings.ini” file in the program’s folder, so it’s portable. It should be compatible with most NT-based Windows versions.

Download Restart on Crash (1.4 MB)

Screenshots & Documentation

Main application window

The main window

  • To add a new application to monitor, click the “Add” button or press the Ins key.
  • To delete on or more applications from the list, select them and click “Delete” or press Del.
  • To edit the per-application configuration, double-click the corresponding row. This will open the editing dialog (see below).
  • You can also access the RoC configuration by clicking “Settings” and view the activity log by clicking “Show Log”. The log contains information about crashed/hanged applications, executed commands, and so on.
Editing the monitor settings for an application

Editing the monitor settings for an application

Well, this one should be pretty self-explanatory 🙂 One detail to keep in mind is that enabling the “It isn’t running” option will make Restart On Crash treat the application as if it has crashed even if you have purposefully it closed it. You can get around this by disabling the monitoring of the application before you close it.

The configuration dialog. Yes, that's it.

The configuration dialog. Yes, that’s it.

“Grace period” is how long Restart on Crash will wait before trying to terminate/restart an application that it has just terminated/restarted. This is intended to prevent a scenario where RoC kills a hanged program, restarts it, decides it has hanged again (e.g. if the program is non-responsive while starting up) and wrongfully terminates it again.

Known Issues

  • If you configure RoC to automatically kill a hanged application, it will terminate all instances of that application when doing so. This may be fixed eventually.

Release Notes


  • The “execute a command” feature can now launch shortcuts (.lnk files). Potentially, it can now run almost any type of file as long as file associations are set up correctly.


  • Improved “application is not responding” detection.
  • Added a “Clear Log” button to the Log window.


  • Added a “Restart Now” option to the application pop-up menu. It restarts the selected application immediately without waiting for the grace period to expire.
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605 Responses to “Automatically Restart Crashed Or Hanged Applications”

  1. Jānis Elsts says:

    Well, I’m working on a different project at the moment, but perhaps this is a potential new feature to consider in the future. Thank you for reporting the issue.

  2. Michael says:

    I have another improvement-request 🙂
    When explorer.exe is restarted the tray-icon from RoC is gone and, the only way to get it back is by killing and restarting it. Maybe there is a way to periodically refresh the tray-icon so that it is not lost after explorere.exe-restart when minimized to tray.
    Besides that, nice software thank you for that so far.
    Have some nice xmas-holidays.
    Kind Regards

  3. Steviator says:

    Just FYI this application which has worked fine up until Windows 11 now frequently disappears from the tray, and also frequently starts two copies of the same application it is monitoring and dutifully keeps them both running.

    Basically makes this application useless for anyone using Windows 11 and there doesn’t seem to be any equivalent made by anyone else. Would like to pledge $100USD to anyone willing to make a replacement for this application that actually works.

    All alternatives are either unmaintained or only available from extremely shady sources, windows NEEDS an app like this because it is so unreliable. Please help!

  4. Tom H says:

    This app is AMAZING!!! Thank you!! runs the Geovision NVR suite excellently!

    Thanks again!

  5. Tom H says:

    Running on 10 pro.. Sorry Steviator… 11 is a cesspool and you accidentally stepped in it </3 . that is a nasty bug though.

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