Two applications are available for users that show them information about the applications on their PC. The program to run for checking which applications start with Windows is MS Config.
Checking startup with the MS configuration tool
Quite a few programs set themselves up to start when the computer boots. If the is getting slower every time you add a program, there’s a reason for that. Many software programs will install programs such as helping apps, loading apps, and scanning apps that start automatically. The problem is that all these extra programs load down your computer so it gets to be slower. Reality is that a lot of these apps aren’t necessary to be constantly in memory. If desired, you can view everything that Windows starts at boot time by using the Microsoft configuration tool.
Start the configuration tool by typing msconfig in the box. Use “Start” and then “Run” to get the box in windows XP. Click “Startup” to view the items that are starting with Windows. You’ll probably see more than what you expected here. You can select or clear the box that you see on the lefthand side of the screen that enables you to decide whether or not the line item will load with Windows. The rest of the information on this line shows who made the application that’s starting up, where that program’s executable is found on your drive and the path to the registry’s settings for the application. With MS Config under your belt, you are ready to find out what files and apps are in the PC’s memory right now.
View running apps with Task Manager
Do a 3-finger salute (CTRL+ALT+DEL) to start Windows’ secure options menu. Choose “Task Manager” from the menu. Visible on top is a screen that shows every application that is active in the operating system. To quit a program on this list, you’ll need to click the button to end the task. Remember that apps exist that might be running, yet won’t appear in the task list. These include (but are not limited to) spyware and viruses. For a more detailed list of what’s in your computer’s RAM, you can click the “Process” tab. This displays in real time every file that is loaded. There’s another “End” button on this tab that can be used to remove a file from memory.
Two approaches to isolating problem apps: Look them up or methodically remove them
A common method of isolating issues on a PC is to eliminate startup programs or to take them out of RAM one at a time. You can find out a lot about the items listed in Task Manager and in MSCONFIG by looking them up on Google. This is educational, but it can be a lengthy endeavor.
With the understanding of what programs start automatically and what programs are running in memory, you now have the power to make your PC do what you want.