Laptop takes longtime to turn off

By danrohit ·
I am using a LG laptop running on Windows XP. I had some issues virus issues in the beginning, and hence I had re-installed OS 3-4 times. But recently,I have an issue - i.e,whenever I click shutdown/restart, it takes sometime to either show the shutdown / restart window. And sometimes it comes up
immediately. I guess,the window comes up immediately, if I don't use the system for a longtime. Can anybody please suggest some ideas to fix this issue ( I am tired of re-installing the OS again and again)

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Slow shutdown is not necessarily a problem ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to Laptop takes longtime to ...

If you have Automatic Update enabled, the updates are only applied at shutdown.

That could be a reason for it being slow to shutdown especially after it has been running for some time, collecting updates while it's been running.

You may also have a particular program that is taking its time to close.

Your Pagefile may be corrupted causing slowdown at close. Your hard drive may be badly fragmented.

There are many possible reasons.

HOWEVER, none of the above (or any other reasons not mentioned) is sufficient reason to re-install the operating system.

Now, do you run any of the following:
Anti-Virus?, Anti-Spyware?, Registry cleaner?, Defragmentation?

How much RAM do you have?
What size is your Pagefile?

Your initial virus issues - Did you get rid of them or just re-install?

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So your problem is what exactly?

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Laptop takes longtime to ...

Slow shutdowns need to be looked at in conjunction with what the computer is actually doing at the time. If it is busy and running at 100% CPU usage it will take longer to throw anything up on the screen than if it is idling away with nothing happening.

Then after you see the Shut Down Log Off the system has to shut down all the running processes so if you have 90 running processes it will naturally take much longer to close these off than if you have 36 which seems to be the minimum number of services enabled by XP.

Then what software is in use? This can have a major impact on time taken to shut down some will actually prevent a shut sown while it is running so in a case like that the application needs to finish before the system can shut down.

Then after windows closes any downloaded Patches will be installed unless you chose not to allow this to happen each time you shut down/reboot so the system will continue to run till these are finished.

If you expect the system to just stop because you want it to you are in for a lot of disappointment. If you want this pull the mains power without a battery fitted but then don't be surprised if on the next attempt at a restart you have to install the OS again. Doing it that way is exactly the same as driving a car into a brick wall to stop the motor, sure it will stop the thing but the damage done isn't worth the time & effort involved.


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Query for OH Smeg

by nepenthe0 In reply to So your problem is what e ...

TweakUI is a nifty utility available from Microsoft:

One can view shutdown scripts with TweakUI:

About > Run Group Policy Editor > Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Sysem > Scripts > Run shutdown scripts visible

Is this a useful diagnostic utility for shutdown problems? How can one use it to resolve prolonged shutdown?

Rick/Portland, OR

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God I haven't used Tweak for ages

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Query for OH Smeg

I stopped using it a very long time ago when several users tried it and trashed an entire companies Desktop system.

Took ages to reinstall all of the Desktops but the server wasn't hit so I had em working from their NB's till things where sorted and no Tweak again. I really don't trust M$ Tools like that overly much so I didn't need much excuse not to use it. The latest is one of the users wants to use Ghost to backup a NB and I'm still not quite sure what he did but somehow managed to copy a Blank Formatted drive to the NB overwriting the NB's OS and Data.

For some strange reason I try to prevent the end users using tools like this. :0


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A couple of suggestions

by nepenthe0 In reply to Laptop takes longtime to ...

The following suggestions are transcribed verbatim from Preston Gralla's book Windows XP Hacks (O'Reilly Media, 2005), p. 13

Don't have XP clear your paging file at shutdown. For security reasons, you can have XP clear your paging file (pagefile.sys) of its contents whenever you shut down. Your paging file is used to store temporary files and data, but when your system shuts down, information stays in the file. Some people prefer to have the paging file cleared at shutdown because sensitive information, such as unencrypted passwords, sometimes ends up in the file. However, clearing the paging file can slow shutdown times significantly, so if extreme security isn't a high priority, you might not want to clear it. To shut down XP without clearing your paging file, run the Registry Editor and go to:

Session Manager\Memory Management

Change the value of ClearPageFileAtShutdown to 0. Close the Registry and restart your computer. Whenever you turn off XP from now on, the paging file won't be cleared, and you should be able to shut down more quickly.

Turn off unnecessary services. Services take time to shut down, so the fewer you run, the faster you can shut down. See:

posted on TR by Scott Lowe (June'05).

Rick/Portland, OR

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Clear Page File

by Kenone In reply to Laptop takes longtime to ...

I also have had problems with laptops clearing the page file but I use the group policy editor to change it.
gpedit.msc\Windows Settings\Security Setting\Local Policies\Security Options\Shutdown:Clear Virtual Memory Pagefile - Disabled
There are times (infestation) where you would want this turned on and then need to switch it back off.

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Very insightful

by nepenthe0 In reply to Clear Page File

Kenone -

Much thanks for your suggestion. I have used TweakUI as my interface with the Group Policy Editor, because I couldn't find gpedit in the System32 applications.

When I run mmc, I see only a an empty menu. Then it dawned upon me to manually load a snap-in, and sure enough, the Group Policy Editor was an option. And yes, it opens under command line gpedit.msc.

So now I have instant access to the Group Policy Editor. Thanks again. Too bad I can't give you a thumbs up...

Rick/Portland, OR

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This is a good fast shutdown program for you..
When i had Xp this is what i used and it is very fast indeed.

Please post back if you have any more problems or questions.

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