Managing start up programs in Windows® XP®
Read on to learn how to manage start up programs under Windows XP.
The programs that start automatically by Windows at the time when the operating system is started are known as Start up programs. But sometimes many programs, viruses, spyware, hijackers, and other malware program themselves, start automatically when Windows get started. When more and more programs are being started automatically, your computer's valuable resources are drained out and this may result in slowdown of your system performance. To find out your computer for programs that are automatically started by Windows, you may download and install Autoruns by Sysinternals. You can then search for entries found in the programs output and determine if the program needs to run. If from the given information you decide that they are not necessary to run, you can uncheck that entry in the Autoruns program and it may no longer start.
Following are the ways to manage start up programs under Windows XP:
- Manual scanning
- Check run registry
- Use Msconfig
You need to manually scan all the locations using Windows Explorer and the Registry Editor, Msconfig tool in order to identify the essential start up programs that need to be run. In some cases the program to run is obvious but in other cases you may need to do some research to determine what the start up program is. Some programs definitely shall run during the start up. These include special purpose printer monitors, certain backup applications, antivirus and antispyware user interfaces, PDA synchronizers and more.
Check run registry
After removing the unwanted start up programs, you need to check the Run Registry entries, since some programs still leave a start up entry in place. So you need to check with the manufacturer for software updates. If no updates are found, the program quits without creating a System Tray icon. If you find that a program keeps its Run start up entry after you disable its 'Quick start' feature, then you need to delete the Run entry.
In order to identify the programs that run when you log on and to test what happens without them, you can use Msconfig. Msconfig may not permanently disable services that initiate start up programs. It simply inhibits them temporarily and in fact when you log on while items are disabled, you may see a dialog box warning you of this. Msconfig is meant to be used in order to identify, which services or start up programs are causing specific problems by process of elimination, so that you can then disable or delete the service or program by usual means, and use Msconfig to restore 'Normal start up' operation.