Friday, August 1, 2008

How to resolve Your Boot-Up and Shutdown Problems

Does your PC hang, complain, or flat-out blue-screen when you start it up or shut it down? PC World's Lincoln Spector has answers to readers' most perplexing boot and shutdown questions.

When something causes a system failure at shutdown, Windows responds by rebooting. Thus, instead of telling you what's wrong, it gives the impression that it can't tell the difference between shutting down and restarting.Fortunately, you can turn off that silly behavior. Select Start, Run (just Start in Vista), type sysdm.cpl, and press Enter. Click the Advanced tab, and then click the Settings button under 'Startup and Recovery' (as opposed to the other two Settings buttons on that tab). Uncheck Automatically restart.

That will stop the reboots, but it won't fix the underlying problem: the system failure causing them. Still, it might give you an error message that you can research to find a solution.

Today, the problem is more likely to be caused by a hardware or driver issue. If the problem started soon after you added a new peripheral or updated an old driver, try removing the recent addition. Check vendors' Web sites for updated drivers for your new hardware, or use Windows' Device Manager to roll back to older ones if you suspect an update has caused the trouble.

Turning the password feature off is simple: Select Start, Run (just Start in Vista), type control userpasswords2, and press Enter. Uncheck Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer.

When you click OK or Apply, a dialog box will ask you which user should be logged on automatically. Entering your name and password this one time will free you from having to type in the info again.

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