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Sunday, October 17, 2021

Windows Shutdown Process – An IT Expert’s Step by Step Guide to a Quicker Shutdown

It’s definitely not an uncommon experience, dealing with a system that takes an age to shutdown, regardless of how many times you click on that shut down button.

Well, this article is for those individuals that are tired of having to wait considerable lengths of time before their system will shutdown, as there are various tweaks and fixes users can implement that I intend to discuss here. There are many different methods, so I have decided to list the ones that I personally find my favourite, so if a sluggish shutdown is your problem, then this is the post for you.

Note: In this article I have listed a number of relatively technical solutions that you should only attempt if you truly feel comfortable doing so.

If you’ve read one article about speeding up Windows shutdown process without actual solution, read this one before quitting on yourself.

It Did What? Here’s 9 Secrets about Speeding Up Windows Shutdown

Speed Up Windows Shutdown process
For computer users that are tired of having to wait considerable lengths of time before they could turn off their system, this article is purposed to help you speed up windows shutdown process without much hassle.

1. Turn Off Search Indexing

With this feature turned on, the operating system will attempt to make things as accessible as possible by indexing all the files and folders on the hard drive. Unfortunately, most people never use the search function in Windows, turning the indexing service off will remove a relatively taxing service, with the added benefit of the system being able to shut down considerably faster.

In order to turn this feature off, simply do the following:

  1. First, you will need to boot into your computer with a user profile that has administrative access.
  1. Once you have successfully booted into your computer, press Windows Key + E to open My Computer.
  1. When My Computer loads up, right click on your Hard Drive and select Properties.

  1. This will bring up the Hard Drive Properties applet, from here, un-tick the box next to Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed in addition to file properties and click on OK.

Note: If you have more than one hard drive, you will need to repeat this process for each drive.

Disable Redundant Startup Items

It probably seems a little strange, at first glance, disabling startup items to speed up the Windows shutdown process, but the truth is, that the programs that start, during system boot up, have a big impact on how fast or slow the computer shuts down. The more programs that are loaded during system boot up, the more programs the operating system will be required to close during shut down.

Many of these startup items may not even be required, and are only loaded out of convenience.

In order to disable redundant startup items, simply do the following:

  1. First, boot into your computer with a user profile with administrative privileges.
  2. Then press Windows Key + R, to open the Run Command box and type msconfig into it and click on OK.

  1. When System Configuration Utility loads up, click on the Startup Tab, and then un-tick the box next to the Startup Item you know you do not need.

Note: Turning off more important process such as your antivirus scanner or certain Windows services can have an adverse effect on your computer. So stick exclusively with the programs that you are familiar with.

Use Registry Tweak

Windows is very good at testing the patience of most individuals that use it, especially if you have everything on default. However, the good thing is that it is possible for you to alter the amount of time that the operating system will wait to kill a service that is not responding, simply by implementing a registry tweak.

Anyway, this can be done by doing the following:

  1. First, boot into your computer with administrative access.
  2. Then press Windows Key + R, and type regedit into the Run Command box and click on OK.

  1. Once Registry Editor loads up, navigate to the following path:


  1. From here, double click on the WaitToKillServiceTimeout string in the right pane.

  1. This will open an Edit String dialog box, from here, type a number within the data range of 1200 – 2000 in the Value Data box and click on OK.

Create a Quick Shutdown Shortcut

Since Windows 2000, Microsoft’s operating systems have been developed with their own built-in remote shutdown tool which can be used to either restart or shutdown the computer. However, it is possible for you to control this tool through the command line, with a much quicker alternative being to create your own shortcut.

To create the shortcut, simply do the following:

  1. First, boot into your computer with the administrative user profile.
  2. Once the computer has successfully finished booting up, right click on the Desktop and select New ->Shortcut.

  1. A Create Shortcut wizard tool should pop up, for the Type the location of the item box, input shutdown.exe -s -t 00 –f and click on Next.

  1. On the following screen put a name (like Shutdown Computer) into the Type a name for this shortcut box then click on Finish.

Note: This command line, simply tells the computer to shutdown using a timeout of zero seconds. It also says to forcibly close running applications without warning.

For convenience sake, you may want to move the desktop icon to your quick launch bar or you could simply pin it to the Taskbar. Whoever is using the computer need only click on the shortcut and the system will shut down with haste.

Uchenna Ani-Okoye
Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website, CompuChenna. You can visit his website here www.compuchenna.co.uk.

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  1. Thank you benchmark for this really good post on the Windows Shutdown Process. I personally look forward to more on this though. Windows 10 activator is the best solution for you. It is not easy to activate Windows 10, but there are many ways to activate these products.


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