How to stop programs from automatically running each time Windows starts

by Ross McKillop on July 12, 2006

Windows

Many of the programs installed on your PC may have, by default, set themselves to run each time your PC starts. These programs will take up system resources (memory, processor cycles etc) even though you’re not using them. Check your system tray right after your PC starts and see how many icons are showing – this can be a good (but not definitive) indication of what’s starting each time you turn on your computer.

For each of these programs, check the settings or configuration screen for a box labeled “Run at Windows Startup” (or similar). By manually starting programs as you need them, rather than having them start automatically when you turn your PC on, your start time will decrease and your system will run much faster. It is important to note that not all programs that start on their own will have an icon in the system tray. Stopping these programs from running at start up can be a bit more difficult. Microsoft has built a program into Windows 98, 98SE, ME and XP called msconfig. This program allows you to change which programs will run when your PC starts. It is very important to note that using msconfig can cause serious problems with your PC if the wrong things are changed. It is strongly recommended that only users who are very comfortable using some of the more advanced aspects of their PC should attempt to alter settings via the msconfig utility. Some sites that will guide you in using msconfig have been provided below.

Microsoft Windows XP resource
NetSquirrel

How to prevent programs from automatically starting when Windows starts

  1. Click Start and choose Run
  2. In the Open field, type msconfig
  3. Click OK
  4. Click on the Startup
  5. Uncheck the box next to any programs you wish to disable from starting when Windows starts
  6. Click OK

Note: You must restart Windows before the changes will take effect

  • rrahawan

    thank u so much,,it is really big help

  • ramakrishna

    yes it is very usefull for me and for everyone

  • http://www.villacasa.co.uk jeff

    thanks this helped fix shutdown problem in xp that was driving me nuts

  • http://None Ignacio

    Thank you. Very Helpfull!!

  • Dušan

    Touto cestou by som Vás chcel poprosiť o pomoc pri odstraňovaní a zrýchlení počítača o pomoc ktoré programy nechať zaškrtnuté a sú dôležité pre počítač a ktoré nie sú dôležité pre spúšťanie lebo veľa s týchto programov čo sú v tabulke mi nič nehovoria a bojím sa aby som dačo nespravil zle ako je to písané v príučke – Je veľmi dôležité si uvedomiť, že pomocou msconfig môže spôsobiť vážne problémy s počítačom, ak zle, keď sa zmení.
    Za pomoc vopred Ďakujem

  • DIONIS

    ola meu pc toda instante apareçe uma janela
    com a lanterninha mostrando reproduçao automatica procurando uma pasta e vai e vem apareçe poxa muito chato ajudai gente

  • Caleb

    Thanks for the tips, it really useful.

  • Bedsheet

    Hi, i had some problems finding the ‘run’ button in my start menu (it’s not there O.o), so i tried to search for ‘msconfig.exe’, clicked on icon and got there. hope it helps anyone, thanx for posting this article :)

  • Charlie H

    Thanks, my PC is running faster now!