Apps and processes on a Windows 10 system don’t always have the most user-friendly name. Often you’ll see apps or processes that are running and you will have to Google their name to check if they should be there, if they’re safe, or if you need to run a very thorough scan on the system.
If your attempts to shut down your Windows 10 system are blocked by an app called Elara, and you see it’s associated with the ApntEX.exe process in task manager, you may want to know where it came from and if it’s time for a fresh install.
The Elara app is an app for controlling the touchpad. You will find this app running on laptops. The Elara app is installed by various laptop manufactures and they’re all able to use it because while the manufacturer is different e.g., Dell, HP, Lenovo, etc, they do often end up using the same hardware in their products. This in turn means they can often share or use the same apps to manage the hardware components. The Elara app is one such app.
Technically speaking, this app isn’t present by this name on new laptops. Manufacturers like Dell, HP etc., have rebranded it and you won’t see it often. Not often doesn’t mean never so if this app is preventing your system from shutting down, here’s what you can do.
You can safely disable Elara but the app will start again. It’s a good idea to disable it before shutting your system down.
- Right-click the taskbar and select Task Manager from the context menu.
- Go to the Processes tab.
- Look for Elara, and select it.
- Click the End Task button at the bottom right.
Set Elara to auto-quit
Manually quitting Elara is tedious so you can set it to quit automatically. This is going to affect all apps that can prevent a system from shutting down, not just Elara, so consider that before you apply this fix.
- Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
- In the run box, enter ‘regedit’, and tap the enter key.
- The registry editor will open. Navigate to the following key.
- Right-click the Desktop value, and select New>DWORD (32-bit) Value.
- Name it AutoEndTasks.
- Double-click it, and set its value to 1.
- Restart your system and apps will no longer be able to prevent the system from shutting down.
Remove Elara app from the system
Windows 10 has excellent generic drivers for the touchpad and you do not need a special app installed by your laptop manufacturer for it to run. This holds true regardless of which version of Windows 10 you’re running so you can uninstall this app. To be safe, you should have a mouse on hand that you can connect to your system before you remove the app.
Find alternative drivers
We’re relying on Windows 10 installing generic drivers for the touchpad but to be on the safe side, you should find and download Synaptics touchpad drivers that are compatible with your system. Once you do that, you will have a fall-back plan in case the generic drivers don’t install.
You can find the right drivers for your laptop on the laptop manufacturer’s website. You might see Elan drivers instead of Synpatics. Those will work fine too.
Install alternative drivers
Make sure you’ve connected a mouse to your system before you proceed.
- Open the Device Manager.
- Expand Mouse and other pointing devices.
- Select your touchpad, and right-click it.
- Select Uninstall device. Accept any on-screen prompts.
- Your touchpad will no longer work.
- Restart the system.
- Windows 10 will detect the hardware (your touchpad) and install drivers for it.
- If the drivers do not install, open Device Manager and go to Mouse and other pointing devices.
- Right-click the touchpad, and select ‘Install device’ or ‘Update driver’.
- Once drivers are installed and your touchpad is working again, it’s a good idea to restart the system again.
Laptop manufacturers install a lot of apps on a system, some helpful, some not so much. Elara isn’t a bad app, it’s just that it works poorly and that makes it a problem. No driver is supposed to hold up a shut down process which is why installing alternative drivers is a reasonable solution.