How to: Disable Windows Startup Programs

How to: Disable Windows Startup Programs

I generally don´t have to disable any startup programs as I consider I only install applications from renowned providers like Microsoft, Apple, Adobe and the likes. However there is always that pesky application that comes preloaded and crashes on a new OS or a user who installs everything offered out there on the Internet. Sometimes it is simply a matter of improving the performance of a computer which has been degraded considerably. So there are a few ways to do this like uninstalling unecessary programs or reconfiguring them so they don´t load at start. However, in order to get visibility into all the applications that are loading at start up you need to rely in a tool like the System Configuration Utility (MSConfig)

The System Configuration Utility–also called MSConfig–is a useful tool for understanding and controlling startup programs. Microsoft intends MSConfig to act primarily as a troubleshooting tool, but its simple and powerful interface makes it a good option for startup management as well.

This comes preloaded on all modern Windows operating systems, so all you really have to do is launch it from a command prompt or find it on the start menu.

  1. Open the Start menu and type msconfig into the Search box or alternatively launch CMD (command prompt).
  2. Click the msconfig search result or if you are using the command prompt type msconfig and hit enter. The utility will open in a new window.
  3. Click the Startup tab. You’ll see a list of programs that start when your computer starts.
  4. To stop a program from automatically launching when you boot the PC, uncheck the box next to its entry.
  5. When you are finished deselecting startup items, click OK. If you made any changes, you’ll be prompted to restart the computer. You don’t have to restart it immediately, but the changes won’t take effect until you do so.

Note: In Windows 8 the task manager shows up the start up programs while the System Configuration Utility shows you the start up services. You can access the start up programs via a link in the System Configuration Utility but if you start the task manager using Ctrl+Alt+Del or opening the application from the start up menu you can accomplish this starting with Windows 8. Also, as a nice added feature Microsoft reports the impact the application has on the start up time. Now it is more easy to determine which applications slow down your start up process and which you can leave alone.

When you restart the computer, MSConfig will alert you to the changes. In the window that pops up, check the box next to Don’t show this message or launch the System Configuration Utility when Windows starts, and click OK to prevent future alerts. You can always return to MSConfig to reverse the changes or make additional tweaks.

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1 Response

  1. finally! i no longer have to close them on task manager one by one. thanks for the tip!

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