There is nothing like a brand new computer or a fresh installed operating system. They usually run like a well-oiled machine for the first few months. Then all of a sudden just when you get it perfect with all the right software and plug-ins you notice your system is now crawling.
What happened? I have 4-gigs of RAM!
Now’s a good time to decide what’s important to run when your computer starts and what is not. Also consider that allot of viruses use the auto run features to run their malicious code. I have dealt with tuff viruses that re-install themselves after removal. Some viruses create themselves and the run key commands on the fly making it very difficult for removal. Understanding the registry Run section can alert you of virus activity.
I did not load any of the software in this screenshot. They all turn on automatically as a Windows service. Some of them are their because they are in my Startup folder.
If you are dealing with a virus that will not allow you to delete it because its running or active try KillBox. This tool will allow you to setup a force delete or delete on reboot. I have used it many times to remove viruses. I am a believer.
Tip – Take a screenshot of your registry as a blueprint
I would recommend taking a screenshot at the beginning of your install before you install any software. You can compare the screenshot anytime you’re in doubt later when its time to do PC house cleaning.
There are a few standard places to check when you want to stop programs and services from running at the startup. The real problem is many software publishers auto-load their apps to make them appear to load faster then they really do which weights the system resources down. This is really only useful for applications you use multiple times a day.
Stop auto loading programs simply
I say simply because this method should work 99% of the time on 99% of the Windows systems variations you may have.
The recommended method
These are the places I like to check through and has worked very well over the years.
- Startup folder
Start menu –> All Programs –> Startup folder
( anything place in here should execute, so remove what you do want )
- Registry (Run and Run Once)
Start menu -> Run -> regedit -> HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> Software -> Microsoft -> Windows -> Current Version -> ( Run + Run Once )
You can look at the data column to see where the exe is running from so you can tell what application is responsible. I usually delete anything that I can verify. Go to ProcessLibrary.com to reference the file and its importance.
- Services folder
Control Panel -> Administrative tools -> Services and check the running services
You can set the service you don’t want to run at startup from Automatic to Manual startup.
Using a GUI for start-up diagnostics
Using the msconfig tool that ships with Windows for a easy view at what’s running. It is easier to stop services here but Microsoft recommends against it unless you are troubleshooting.
- Start –> Run –> msconfig and hit OK
- Go to the Services and uncheck services you would like to disable.
- Go to the Startup and uncheck what you do not want to startup.
Want to know how to find out the name of a service
- Start Menu -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services –> right click the service.
Who would have thought that the name was LMS. So net stop lms would stop the service from running.
Tip: type net start inside the command to see all the currently running services.