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Is there an easy way to prevent programs (Such as Logitech and Windows Live) from starting up automatically when I turn on my computer? I rarely use these, and each time I start my PC, I have to manually exit the program (by right-clicking the system tray icon, or ending the process in the task manager).

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5 Answers 5

up vote 10 down vote accepted

To remove programs from the boot process, first check if it it in Start Menu > All Programs > Startup. If it is, remove it.

Next, go Start Menu > Run > msconfig. In the startup tab (I think it is the last tab), unchecked the program you wan to stop starting up. The names may not be the same to what you are used to, so you should check the Manufacturer and Command column to identify the correct programs to 'remove'. If it turns out you have removed the wrong program from the boot process, you can just go back into the msconfig utility and re-enable the program.

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Sorry for th shockng answer, iPod touch sucks is horrble for longer responses –  David Pearce Jul 26 '09 at 13:12
    
That answered my Q, thank you Josh! –  JDelage Jul 26 '09 at 19:18
    
Warning: Using msconfig is NOT recommended for permanent changes. It's only for trouble-shooting. Use it to find the problem - but then find the correct way to remove it permanently or disable it on your system and go back to regular bootup (i.e., turn off msconfig). –  yosh m Jan 29 '12 at 12:55
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@JohnSonderson - For example, if it's in the Startup program group, you can remove it from there. Many programs (e.g., Skype) have an option to "Automatically start when Windows starts" - you can deselect that option. –  yosh m Dec 15 at 22:44
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P.S. For windows 8.1, Task Manager now has a tab for managing startup items. –  yosh m Dec 15 at 22:46

There are a few other ways apps can get started automatically - the easiest way to find/disable all of them is the autoruns utility

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+1 for autoruns –  bobobobo Aug 9 '09 at 15:29
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Autoruns isn't really well suited for average joes on their computers, due to it's ability to remove anything and everything that starts, including critical system bits. –  music2myear Apr 21 '11 at 17:20
    
This app is not a stock app and needs to be downloaded separately, but it seems quite useful. Thanks! –  John Sonderson Dec 15 at 18:15

A good free tool for managing your startup programs that has become popular in the last year or so is Soluto - it analyzes your startup & provides recommendations about startup programs that you may not otherwise have realzed are chewing up startup time and run-time resources. For each, you have the option to leave it in the boot, disable it, or delay it - so it will run, but not slow down the initial bootup. The recommendations are crowdsourced and moderated, so they are generally trustworthy. Anything you do is reversible, too.

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Soluto is ideal for non-techies to manage their startup programs. Utilities like Ccleaner also offer easier access to these functions. –  user 99572 is fine Jan 29 '12 at 13:13
    
Judging from the site Soluto is for Android and Apple mobile devices, not for Windows. I like the ability to postpone startup so as to not slow down the system when it boots. –  John Sonderson Dec 15 at 18:17
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@JohnSonderson - I looked & it appears that Soluto no longer offers their PC products. I stopped using it when I upgraded to a new machine about a year ago with a new OS. –  yosh m Dec 15 at 22:53

Don't forget to check a program's options or preferences. Some do have an option to start on windows start-up that you can disable but hide it well. If I remember right, Live Messenger's option was pretty well hidden, for example.

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First, the programs themselves will probably have options allowing you to tell them not to start at logon or system load. Using this function is usually best becuase many programs also check their settings, and if their settings say they ought to start when windows starts, they'll reset themselves to do so whether you used autorns, or msconfig, or any other tool.

For those programs that don't have an easy option to stop themselves, I would recommend CCleaner. It allows you to disable most start up programs very easily, while hiding some of the deep and critical system functions that other programs, such as autoruns, reveal.

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Interesting to know that programs can override msconfig settings. –  John Sonderson Dec 15 at 18:18
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Not particularly interesting. MSConfig is just one view of a particular set of registry settings that programs are allowed to write to and modify. You want a program not to start, and the developers of that program think their program works best when it starts with the computer. Most programs set their Run entry once, and then leave it alone except when receiving an update. Some programs are more aggressive about this, and as a result I uninstall them. –  music2myear Dec 15 at 18:28
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Thanks. Useful to know that msconfig is just a view of a particular set of registry settings. –  John Sonderson Dec 15 at 18:41

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