Do you have problems when you start up your computer? Does it seem to take a long time or you get strange messages? Fortunately Windows has something called “Selective Startup” that will help you figure out what’s going wrong.
Hold the Windows key and press the R key ( Win+R) and type msconfig in the Run box that pops up.
In the System Configuration dialog box, under the General tab, click Selective Startup. (First screen shot shows XP, the second, Windows 7).
You’ll see several check boxes. Uncheck everything and reboot. Then check just the first and reboot. Did startup run smoother without any issues?
Then go back to msconfig, check the next box and reboot. Continue this process until you experience your problem.
The next step requires a time commitment.
Let’s say that your problem appeared when you checked Startup Items. Then go to the Startup tab and click the Disable All button. Check off half the boxes on the list and reboot. No issue? Then check the next half and reboot. When the problem happens, narrow down that half until you isolate which item is causing the issue. Don’t let the Windows Operating System check box throw you (like it did me). That can safely be unchecked too.
Once the offensive item is found, just uncheck it. Continue checking the rest of the boxes and rebooting to make sure you don’t have more than one problem.
You should get a clean boot and can get on with life.
P.S. This can also solve some shut down hang ups.