Windows: Stop Programs from Running During Boot Up

msconfig XP

Having programs autoload during bootup really slows down WIndows XP, Vista and Windows 7 PCs, our aNewDomain benchmark shows. Brian Burgess shows you how to speed up your Windows PC by cutting the number of programs that clutter your boot up process.

A lot of programs start up when you boot your Windows PC — and whether or not they come from Windows — you definitely don’t need all of them. Most new programs will offer the option of loading at start up and showing up on the Start Up menu. But that slows down your boot up time — on Windows versions XP, Vista and Windows 7, as we tested.

Here’s how to stop programs from starting up during boot up in XP, Vista and Windows 7.

First, into the search box, click start and type: msconfig
Hit Enter.


The System Configuration windows opens. Click the Startup tab, then uncheck any programs you don’t want to run when you boot your system.

If you’re not sure what a program is just hover your mouse over it to see the full path. If you’re still not sure, don’t uncheck the program. Then each time you restart your PC, Trial and error will help you figure out what you need and what you don’t.

Purely and technically speaking, you don’t need anything check to run at bootup besides the OS, though I choose to load an antivirus program and a few other programs I use super frequently to my startup process in Windows.


After you’ve made your selections, click OK.


If this is the first time you’ve run System Configuration, in Vista and Windows 7, you just need to click the Restart button once.

Click Don’t Show this Message Again. Click Restart.


In Windows XP, click Start >> Run.

msconfig XP

In the Run line type: msconfig
Then click OK.

run xp

Click the Startup tab and uncheck the programs you don’t want to during startup. Click OK.

sysconfig xp

Unfortunately in XP, you’ll have to restart each time you make a change.

restart xp

That’s all there is to it. The older your system is, the more I’m betting it’ll benefit from this tip.

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