Windows

TR Community tip: Shutting down Windows Vista for real

In this quick tip by TR's moderator, Tammy Cavadias, learn how to change the shut down behavior in Windows Vista.
This tip was provided by TechRepublic's moderator Tammy Cavadias.

In Windows Vista, when you want to shut down your PC, you typically first click on the Start button. At the bottom of the menu, you see three icons: a power symbol, a padlock, and an arrow. Clicking the Power button would seem like the logical choice to turn off your system, but it actually places your computer into Sleep mode. Instead, you have to select the arrow and then choose shut down from the menu.

Follow these steps to change Vista's shut down behavior:

  1. Click the Start button and type Power Options in the Search box, or open the Control Panel | System and Maintenance | Power Options (this brings up the "Select a power plan" sub-configuration header by default)
  2. Under Preferred plans, select Change Plan Settings
  3. Navigate to Change Advanced Power Settings
  4. Click the + sign next to "Power buttons and lid" to expand the menu
  5. Expand the "Start menu power button" menu, and change the selection to "Shut down" (the default is Sleep)
  6. Click OK to apply the changes

Voila! Not only can you now easily shut down Vista using the Power button icon, but you should also notice that the color of this icon has changed to red. For you geekier folks out there, you can use this method:

  1. Press the WindKey + R to open the Run dialog box
  2. Type cmd and press Enter
  3. Now type powercfg.cpl,1 to open the Advance settings under Power Options
  4. Follow directions 4-6 as mentioned above

Do you know other ways to accomplish this task? Please post them in this discussion thread.

And if you have your own TR Community tip, please send it to trol@techrepublic.com so that we can feature in the TR Out Loud blog.

About

Sonja Thompson has worked for TechRepublic since October of 1999. She is currently a Senior Editor and the host of the Smartphones and Tablets blogs.

10 comments
Marc Erickson
Marc Erickson

Can this be scripted - or put in a registry edit?

Media-Ted@Juno.com
Media-Ted@Juno.com

The easiest way to perform this for me is to right-click on the power information icon in the systray and then select power options. While this is most useful for laptops - as it allows you to see by "mousing over" the icon what the remaining power is, or, conversly how much % of charge remains, it just is more convenient to have it there for such adjustments. I have it on all my XP and Vista towers as well as laptops. Really easy.

adds_72
adds_72

How to speed up shutdown in Windows Vista?

sujit_z
sujit_z

Thank you. Can we have some more on Vista?

---TK---
---TK---

In responce to the article, are there other ways to shutdown vista? Here is my fav. 1. Create a .txt file 2. with in the text file place @echo off shutdown -s -t 01 exit 3. save and close the .txt, and rename it to shut.bat, and place it in anywhere you want. 4. right click shut.bat, choose add short cut to quick launch. 5. Depending on how many Icons you have, place it in the 9th spot (or last spot). Now if its in the 9th spot, when you want to shutdown use the keystroke winkey+9. I always advise keeping it away from 1-5, you might accidently shutdown your PC when going for the FF3 or IE icon...

Media-Ted@Juno.com
Media-Ted@Juno.com

... you started out many years ago by writing .sub submit files. Go on, you can admit it. What a great idea! Gotta fool around with that one. BTW, where'd you learn about WIN+# keys? I don't remember that from anywhere. Thanks!

---TK---
---TK---

standard shortcuts for Vista, I knew they added a whole mess of new ones... and came across that... then combined ideas... and presto :) it also works in Win 7. A way to do it in XP would be place that .bat anywhere besides the desktop, creat a shorcut to the desktop > right click the short cut > Properties > look for "Shortcut Key ctrl+alt+x x=anything, but I use numbers easer to keep track of...

Zpunky
Zpunky

Reading this great tip made me wonder if putting this .bat into the Startup folder would have the same effect as the practical joke we used to play on Mac people, waaay back. We'd put the Shutdown icon into their Startup folder and watch as they helplessly tried to regain control of their system, constantly shutting down on startup. (Answer: Startup without extension and remove the icon from the Startup folder).

---TK---
---TK---

that does work... I had a friend do that to me a few years back... could never get quick enough to do Winkey+r > cmd > shutdown -a .... ended up logging into the admin account, and fixing it that way...