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In a continuation of this question, I asked how to log my boot process in Windows XP. The reason I wanted to do this is that every time I boot, my computer hangs on the first boot, I have to do a hard shutdown, and then it always boots up on the next boot (basically, every other).

So, upon using Sysinternal's ProcessMonitor to log my boot process, I took a look at the longest running tasks. The biggest one, by far, is svchost.exe. It's path is C:\WINDOWS\Tasks, and the duration is 303 (seconds, I'm assuming). The actual commandline path is C:\Windows\System32\svchost.exe -k netsvcs.

Does anybody have any idea what is going on here? I would appreciate any clarifications or help with this problem as it has been driving me crazy.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Assuming the system is malware free, have you updated your chipset/network drivers?

There are reports of the nvidia 650i chipset drivers and netsvcs cpu hogging which could cause a slow boot. http://forum.sysinternals.com/topic12039.html

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I did check my drivers - they are out of date. Don't know if an update will fix it, but I'm doing that now. Can't hurt...right? –  JasCav Feb 21 '11 at 18:41
    
Updated drivers would be a good to start with. –  Moab Feb 21 '11 at 18:47
    
+1 - This does appear to be the problem. I have rebooted three times now, and, while the boot is still a little slow, it didn't hang one time. I'll accept in a little while if this trend continues. Thank you! –  JasCav Feb 21 '11 at 19:20

Well, yes, but it's not too helpful. svchost.exe is a generic process that handles running dlls. Netsvcs is a group of such libraries that are generally network related. At least one of them is causing a problem, but it's impossible to determine which from the given information.

If you can get it to boot with the errored config, try typing at the command prompt: tasklist /svc /fi "imagename eq svchost.exe" which will give you a list of which services are attached to which svchost.exe PID, and then you can check the taskmanager to see which library is causing the problem. Once that's done, figure out which system service is kicking off the process, and stop that, and you should be good to go.

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But by the time the system has booted, it is too late; stopping the service (assuming it is a service that can be stopped without issue) is not going to have an effect at that point. –  Synetech Feb 21 '11 at 18:21
    
@synetech: Yea, that's why I thought it wasn't very helpful =P Try using the remote flags on tasklist (watchingthenet.com/…) to view the processes from another computer –  Satanicpuppy Feb 21 '11 at 20:53
    
That’s more work that it’s worth, it’s easier just to repeat the logged boot and note the PID of the offending process, then look it up in ProcessExplorer. –  Synetech Feb 21 '11 at 21:33

It depends on which services are being run by that particular instance of SVCHOST.EXE.

Run a logged boot again and this time, take a look at the PID of the instance of SVCHOST.EXE that is taking so long. Now open ProcessExplorer (also from Sysinternals) and double-click the SVCHOST.EXE that has that PID in the ProcExp tree.

Now look at the Services tab and examine the services that are hosted by that instance. One of those is causing the delay.

Depending on which services are hosted by that instance, you could try noting them down and their normal START setting, then for each one, setting it to manual/disabled and the others to their normal START settings. Then reboot and see if it still happens.

NB You should double-check the services in question first because depending on which ones are hosted by the blocking SVCHOST.EXE, setting it to manual or disabled could prevent Windows from loading.

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