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So many programs running at startup. How to stop?

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Everytime I restart my computer I have got 30 or so processes running. How do I make it so that only the esential ones are the only ones that start automatically? Also how much of a hastle is it re-install windows? I have got so much unwanted crap/spyware/etc that I think maybe I should just re-install windows. What do you think?
post #2 of 25
check your start up folder in applications menu. If there's nothing there, chances are that most of your start up processes are hidden in the regestry. You'll need to navigate to Run folders. I don't have windows running right now to give you the exact path.
post #3 of 25
Go to start, run, type in msconfig.
post #4 of 25
If you are concerned about adware or spyware you might want to try Ad-Aware or Spybot. They are pretty effective removing tools.
post #5 of 25
I am having the same problem. When I first got my computer, I had 36 processes running. Right now I have 51 processes running. Where did they come from?

I used adaware numerous times, no decrease in the number of processes.

How do you know which processes are essential, which ones are "garbage?"
post #6 of 25
You could google the process names separately or then try to find pages like this that list some most common process names. Fifty processes isn't a catastrophe. I have about forty processes running and nothing unwanted.
post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 
I do use adaware and there isnt anything in the startup folder. So they must all be in the registry. Anyway to remove them from the registry?
post #8 of 25
see my previous post
post #9 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by britishbane
I do use adaware..
Did you update the definitions via Web Update [the globe icon with the magnifying glass over it] before you scanned?

p.s. Do check out msconfig as previously mentioned, make sure you check out the startup tab.
post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RYCeT
see my previous post

Sorry, I missed it the first time. Thats exactly what I was looking for. Thanks much.
post #11 of 25
Use Ad-Aware, Spybot and Startup.
post #12 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by ampgalore
I am having the same problem. When I first got my computer, I had 36 processes running. Right now I have 51 processes running. Where did they come from?

I used adaware numerous times, no decrease in the number of processes.

How do you know which processes are essential, which ones are "garbage?"

Not always easy, msconfig(as mentioned by another poster) will tell you where the process originates from i.e which directory the executable is in, often that will give you a clue, something coming out of the windows or \system32 dir will probably be required. If it is just in a program files directory i.e

C:\Program Files\Quicktime\qttask.exe

it may be a stub that does not need to be running all the time. If you have downloaded any media players from the web you will certainly have some of these and they will periodically connect to their home sites and try and get you to update the program (isnt Windows security wonderful), antivirus software also runs in the background unbidden as do some disk defrgamenters. Some stubs refer to hardware i.e in mine I have touchpad , keyboard and videocard processes all beetling away in the background.

You can always try stopping processes in the task manager, if they really are critical windows will not normally let you kill them. If killing a process does not seem to do any damage you can disable some of them in Msconfig, they can always be enabled again(and they will be on reboot).

Sometimes I will edit registry settings to get rid of stuff. but this can be risky , though you can make backups of your. registry.
post #13 of 25
What I usualy do is just type the name of the suspected process in google and it usualy find for me exacly what it is and what it does.
post #14 of 25
Run regedit and check the following locations:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\Curr entVersion\Run

HKEY_Current_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\Curre ntVersion\Run

Delete all keys that you don't want to start up at boot time. Just be careful what you delete in registry. You might want to back it up.
post #15 of 25
In Windows 2000 and XP, also go to Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services. See if those match some of the unknowns. There's usually a nice little description in there too.
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