Windows Legacy OS

General discussion

How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs

by katypd / January 8, 2010 12:44 AM PST

Currently there are many start-up programs on my system. I suspect some, perhaps many, of them could be disabled but I am unsure which ones they are.

Where can I find a listing that explains a little about what these many unfamiliar programs are and which I may disable without doing any damage to the start-up procedure.

Thanks,

pdasher

Post a reply
Discussion is locked
You are posting a reply to: How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs
The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Please refer to our CNET Forums policies for details. All submitted content is subject to our Terms of Use.
Track this discussion and email me when there are updates

If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem. Also please exercise your best judgment when posting in the forums--revealing personal information such as your e-mail address, telephone number, and address is not recommended.

You are reporting the following post: How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs
This post has been flagged and will be reviewed by our staff. Thank you for helping us maintain CNET's great community.
Sorry, there was a problem flagging this post. Please try again now or at a later time.
If you believe this post is offensive or violates the CNET Forums' Usage policies, you can report it below (this will not automatically remove the post). Once reported, our moderators will be notified and the post will be reviewed.
Collapse -
Very simple
by Jimmy Greystone / January 8, 2010 1:01 AM PST

It's very simple. You run the msconfig program, go to the startup tab, and then go down the list, one by one, typing in the names of programs you see there to Google or your search engine of choice. Read a few pages to get an idea about what the program does, and then decide if you want it running or not.

It'll be tedious and time consuming, but there is no central repository of info on this.

Collapse -
WinXP Startmenu
by pegpluscol / January 8, 2010 2:50 PM PST
In reply to: Very simple

Hi Jimmy,
I also tried MSCONFIG and learnt something.
I have a problem you may be able to also help me with.

I have WIndows XP and used AVG antivirus until December 2009.
It was removed with 'Add/Remove programs',
and the directory and desktop icon were deleted.
However, the registry entry remained, so I deleted that as well.
A registry search for more AVG entries revealed no more.

When you click Start, Settings, Taskbar, then Customize,
a list of icons is displayed on the left with these options:
Always show, Always hide and Hide when inactive.
An AVG icon appears among these.

A search via Help/Support for text or files with the word 'AVG' was negative.
Please advise how can I get rid of this icon.
Colin

Collapse -
Just leave it be
by Jimmy Greystone / January 10, 2010 12:11 AM PST
In reply to: WinXP Startmenu

Just leave it be. It's not hurting anything by being there. And I would suggest extreme caution any time you do ANYTHING in the registry. What you think you may be deleting, you may not actually be deleting.

Collapse -
Controlling startup programs
by glennlee / January 8, 2010 6:04 AM PST

There is a very small simple utility call startup control panel by Mike Lin. When you run this utility, you are given the option of which programs and processes run at startup by checking or unchecking a box on a list provided. That way you can simply run the application and uncheck the box for applications experimentally. If adverse results happen, simply run the app and check the box again. get it here:

http://www.mlin.net/

Collapse -
Why use a separate program
by Jimmy Greystone / January 8, 2010 7:13 AM PST

Why use a separate program when what you describe sounds EXACTLY like what msconfig does and even LOOKS like? It's already there, and you don't need to do anything more than run it.

Collapse -
msconfig
by glennlee / January 8, 2010 8:40 AM PST

Msconfig has a nasty feature. If you stop running a startup program using msconfig, it stops in the booting process to get your okay. No way to get around this, and bootup is a pain.

Collapse -
I've never encountered that
by Jimmy Greystone / January 8, 2010 9:59 AM PST
In reply to: msconfig

I've never once encountered anything like you describe using msconfig. It sounds like you somehow triggered an interactive boot process intended for debugging purposes.

Collapse -
I have done it this way for years....
by tallin / January 8, 2010 11:39 AM PST
Collapse -
How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs
by stanpowell / January 8, 2010 12:04 PM PST

I use CCleaner. Under tools, the program has a feature for Start-up programs where as you can check or un-check programs that start on machine at start-up. I have used this method for about 3 years and have never had a problem. Hope this helps.
swamprat

Collapse -
Options
by rje49 / January 9, 2010 11:55 PM PST

As you can see, you have choices on how to prevent start-up programs from running. There are programs that will not only stop these start-ups, but alternatively give you the choice to delay a start-up. I've used WinPatrol with complete satisfaction for several years. It does much more than simply set an On/Off. For instance, you obviously want your A/V to be on, but to not impede boot times, so set a delay for a minute or two, or whatever. You will also be notified when a start-up program reactivates itself (which some do!), and halt that type of activity. It monitors and notifies the user whenever a new program wants to put itself in the start-up list, and asks for the OK. And as usual with many utilities, it provides other useful controls.
Here is where I go to look up what various start-up programs are:
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/startups/

Collapse -
How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs: AUTORUNS
by TheRadMan / January 10, 2010 12:46 AM PST

I like all the previous suggestions
but they are NOT easy!
MSCONFIG and other suggestions do NOT answer the root questions;
How does the user control all RUN, RUNONCE, START ONCE options in the registry and in all the DOS-BOOT levels in one place?
CCleaner is also an excellent utility but it will not reach into the Windows Registry, in the context of this question.

Answer
Sys-Internals site fabulous utility called AUTORUNS
under the EVERYTHING tab:
be very very careful with this utility
and investigate
EVERY running process with SysInternals site.

You can wipe out or delete processes
but the better method is to UNCHECK items;
but be aware that this also effects/disables
the Registry setting.

Look specifically under the LOGON tab

Pay attention to PUBLISHER collumn;
some sophisticated attacks can alias this as well
but for the most part SYMANTEC, MICROSOFT etc
are reputable indications.

Look under the SCHEDULED TASKs tab
Does GOOGLE really need to "check for updates"?
The USER can do this by himself.

Look under BOOT EXECUTE.

Really look closely at the under InternetExplorer
for BrowserHelperObjects and toolbars and hooks and so on;
this is where the worst offenders live

and the EVERYTHING tab is a mixture of EVERY process,
so often it is less confusing to go to individual tabs...

see the
www.sysinternals.com, the site has been around
for 15 years and is uber-trustworthy

> LOOK at the all entries FIRST- become a tourist
and do not change anything
> Make a BOOT DISK
> Change ONLY ONE THING AT A TIME,
then reboot, relogin, etc
check drivers or hardware concerned with that entry
> DOCUMENT what you do,
scribble down your findings; its easier
to undo what you thought was bad, when in fact
its a driver for that Chinese 8GB USB Key drive, etc
and not malicious

You will find

Many resource hogs
Speedup Helpers that really dont need to load (Adobe, etc)

...or you can just be a browsing tourist and start asking questions and learn; this is how I used Autoruns for the first *year*...
Now I know what is a waste of bytes
Now I know what really does not need to start up

Collapse -
A critical Question
by msgale / January 10, 2010 4:05 AM PST

Why? What is your rationale for changing the startup program list. You may improve startup times, but other than that you gain nothing. Most use little resources. Most are blocked waiting for a specific action by the system to run. Currently I have 93 processes in the process list. The PC has been running 2 days. About 1/3 of the processes accumulated less than one second of CPU time each. Another third less than a minute each. The idle process accounts for more than ninety percent of CPU time. Unless your system is markedly different, I wouldn't bother..

Collapse -
You write and I quote.....
by tallin / January 10, 2010 4:57 AM PST
In reply to: A critical Question
"Currently I have 93 processes in the process list."

With respect Processes are quite different from Startup Programs.
Follow this link http://www.processlibrary.com/directory/a to reduce your processes unnecessarily starting at boot time. I have 28 and that is a few to many.

Alternatively as posted in my first reply, here is the Startup Program link to reduce Start programs at boot time.
http://www.sysinfo.org/startuplist.php

SYSTEMLOOKUP http://www.systemlookup.com/lists.php?list=2 is also a very handy utility to have.

This then may explain the difference in Processes and Startup Programs.
Collapse -
How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs: AUTORUNS
by TheRadMan / January 10, 2010 9:09 PM PST

I like all the previous suggestions
but they are NOT easy!
MSCONFIG and other suggestions do NOT answer the root questions;
How does the user control all RUN, RUNONCE, START ONCE options in the registry and in all the DOS-BOOT levels in one place?
CCleaner is also an excellent utility but it will not reach into the Windows Registry, in the context of this question.

Answer
Sys-Internals site fabulous utility called AUTORUNS
under the EVERYTHING tab:
be very very careful with this utility
and investigate
EVERY running process with SysInternals site.

You can wipe out or delete processes
but the better method is to UNCHECK items;
but be aware that this also effects/disables
the Registry setting.

Look specifically under the LOGON tab

Pay attention to PUBLISHER collumn;
some sophisticated attacks can alias this as well
but for the most part SYMANTEC, MICROSOFT etc
are reputable indications.

Look under the SCHEDULED TASKs tab
Does GOOGLE really need to "check for updates"?
The USER can do this by himself.

Look under BOOT EXECUTE.

Really look closely at the under InternetExplorer
for BrowserHelperObjects and toolbars and hooks and so on;
this is where the worst offenders live

and the EVERYTHING tab is a mixture of EVERY process,
so often it is less confusing to go to individual tabs...

see the
www.sysinternals.com, the site has been around
for 15 years and is uber-trustworthy

> LOOK at the all entries FIRST- become a tourist
and do not change anything
> Make a BOOT DISK
> Change ONLY ONE THING AT A TIME,
then reboot, relogin, etc
check drivers or hardware concerned with that entry
> DOCUMENT what you do,
scribble down your findings; its easier
to undo what you thought was bad, when in fact
its a driver for that Chinese 8GB USB Key drive, etc
and not malicious

You will find

Many resource hogs
Speedup Helpers that really dont need to load (Adobe, etc)

...or you can just be a browsing tourist and start asking questions and learn; this is how I used Autoruns for the first *year*...
Now I know what is a waste of bytes
Now I know what really does not need to start up

Collapse -
In some cases, a better approach
by porsche10x / January 24, 2010 3:00 AM PST

Why would you disable a truly unwanted program? Using msconfig or any of the suggested programs is kinda like doing bodywork on your car with duct tape. I would suggest another alternative. Do a little research with any of the methods already mentioned to find out what actual programs are creating the unwanted startup entries. Then, don't disable them; just completely uninstall those programs.

Collapse -
Because...
by rje49 / January 24, 2010 3:22 AM PST

Many of these programs are such things as Abobe Reader, your media player, Nvidia graphics contol center, or your printer software with all it's bells & whistles. You need it from time to time but there is absolutely no need to have it start up and run all the time.

Collapse -
I said in some cases, and...
by porsche10x / February 5, 2010 7:30 AM PST
In reply to: Because...

I did say truly unwanted programs. However, in most cases, programs like Adobe reader, etc., are only adding unwanted processes because you told them to when you installed them (or, more likely, because you didn't tell them not to, tricky devils). If you go back and reconfigure them not to start at bootup, not to automatically update, not to automatically get new codecs when available, not to check back with the mother ship, etc., etc., then they won't be running in the background. Most programs that you rarely use, even printer and video card apps, can be configured not to start at boot up. Then you can start them when you need them like any other program. You can install your printer drivers without installing the bloatware app that goes with it. Yes, I realize that some apps can be aggressive and that you might find one indispensible. My point is that msconfig is an administrative / toubleshooting tool. Using it to manage your normal run-time environment should be a last resort, not a first one. In most cases, not all, but most, it would make much more sense to manage the problem from the source. No one thought to mention this obvious starting point, so I thought I would.

Collapse -
How Do I Limit the Number of Start-up Programs
by pccare_himanshu / January 24, 2010 7:40 PM PST

Simply goto start->Run-> type msconfig and hit Enter

In system configuration windows click on startup tab and here you will will see the start up items u can uncheck the unwanted ones and Click on Apply

if you are confused take a screen shot of the startup items list and post it

Popular Forums
icon
Computer Help 47,885 discussions
icon
Computer Newbies 10,322 discussions
icon
iPhones, iPods, & iPads 3,188 discussions
icon
Security 30,333 discussions
icon
TVs & Home Theaters 20,177 discussions
icon
HDTV Picture Setting 1,932 discussions
icon
Phones 15,713 discussions
icon
Windows 7 6,210 discussions
icon
Networking & Wireless 14,510 discussions

Tech Tip

Know how to save a wet phone?

It's not with a dryer and it's not with rice. CNET shows you the secret to saving your phone.