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The System Configuration Utility

Windows 7, Vista, and XP all come with functionality known as the system configuration utility. The system configuration utility let's you resolve problem(s) preventing your computer from starting properly. With this tool, you can choose to start windows with just common programs, and then enable the startup programs one at a time. The goal here is to check to see which program is preventing the computer from starting properly.

To disable applications on startup in Windows 7 and Vista, click on the start button -> go to Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> System Configuration. In Windows XP, you can click start -> Run -> type in msconfig -> click ok. Running msconfig should also work in Vista and Windows 7 as an alternative way to open the system configuration utility. On the System Configuration dialog, we have the General tab, Boot tab, Services tab, Startup tab, and Tools tab.

The Boot Tab

The Boot tab gives you configuration options. From the boot tab, you can display the name of all software drivers each time your system is booting. To enable this setting, select OS boot information -> click apply -> click ok.

Please note that if you select the No GUI boot, your computer will not display the windows splash screen that we are familiar with during boot: the same way Safe mode disables graphical user interface and networking.

The Services Tab

The Services tab displays the services that start alongside your computer when it boots. You can disable and enable services here. To ensure that I donít disable any Microsoft services, I always select the Hide all Microsoft services, click on Apply, and then ok.

Startup Tab

The Startup tab on the system configuration dialog shows you the applications that run when your computer boots. From here, you can disable any program that you suspect causes the system to boot slowly. To disable a program, deselect it, click on the apply button and then on ok.

The General Tab

The general tab lets you start windows in diagnostic, normal, or selective startup modes.

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