"Has anyone out there experienced this?"
Yes. And I keep a demo of it handy when I travel to show to any Redmondite I run over. I can crash Explorer on demand by a single click on a corrupt (to Microsoft) Jpeg, Mpeg and other formats. Explorer doesn't handle such with any grace.
To work around the issue, I find these files and recompress them or treat them with care.
The final workaround is to use a file browser/manager. Explorer is not a "real" file manager and easy to show since it adds items to display lists, hides files even when we tell it not to.
There is no known cure yet.
I have been dealing with this issue for a LONG time now, and have never found a solution...So, I'm asking this learned community!
When I am in Windows Explorer looking for, or managing files, it sometimes will just go away...disappear, then I watch all of the windows go away momentarily, then come back (apparently Explorer restarts itself, otherwise I would not see the other windows). When the system finishes resetting itself (explorer starts), the Windows Explorer instance that I was in is no longer there. I have to start another instance and then hope it doesn't happen again. Sometimes it happens when I am in the middle of copying files from one disk or folder to another.
Has anyone out there experienced this? I have tried to reinstall SP1 and patches, have browsed and searched and never seen any problems the same as this. I keep my virus software and firewall up to date, and I run spybot regularly, so I'm pretty sure it's not viral.