(System Configuration Utility) is a troubleshooting utility
used to diagnose and fix system configuration issues. In the Summary
section Microsoft says "The System Configuration utility helps you find problems with your Windows configuration. It does not manage the programs that run when Windows starts.
Although it works as a basic startup manager, msconfig should not be used routinely to disable auto-start programs
. It is a temporary solution and not a good practice for the following reasons:
- When uninstalling programs while disabled with msconfig, they may not be uninstalled properly and manually editing the registry will be required to remove everything.
- Msconfig will often leave orphaned entries when software is uninstalled. When used to switch back to normal startup mode, these orphan entries can result in boot up errors.
- Msconfig only allows you to disable entries. To completely remove an entry from its' list you have to edit the registry, or use a third-party tool like Msconfig Cleanup Utility or a startup manager.
- Msconfig allows malware related items to hide in your registry which you may not see or affect your computer until switched back to normal startup mode. This could then result in reinfection of the computer.
- Msconfig does not list all applications loaded in all possible startup locations (some entry points are hidden and unknown to the user).
A better alternative for disabling unnecessary startups is to use a free Startup Manager
like one of the following:
If you use CCleaner
, it has a built-in Startup Manager under Tools > Startup. Revo Uninstaller Free
includes a Startup Manager under Tools.
Most of these tools are stand-alone portable apps in a zip file so no installation is necessary. They will provide a list of programs that load when Windows starts. If you untick an entry it will no longer run at startup. This will allow you to experiment and see how your system performs with any of them disabled and easily re-enable them again. Some startup programs are necessary so be careful what you disable.You should not use msconfig to disable startup applications related to services.
Doing so alters the registry and there are services that are essential for hardware and booting your system. When you uncheck a service in msconfig, you completely disable it. If you uncheck the wrong one, you may not be able to restart your computer
. Changing the default settings for services can be risky and might prevent key services from running correctly. Only change the status of a service if it is necessary.
You should only disable services using the Services Management Console
) where you cannot disable services that may be vital to boot your system.
Windows 7 Why can't I use msconfig to change my services?
The reason is because with msconfig and Hardware Profiles, you can disable services that may be vital to boot your system. With the management console (services.msc) you cannot. Also, msconfig, while unchecking the box, is disabling the service.
Black Viper's warning: Why can't I use msconfig to change my services in Windows?