Autoruns is one of the best programs which can show you comprehensive information of auto-starting locations of any start-up application. Showing you which programs are configured to run during boot or login, and even when you start different Windows applications, like Internet Explorer and media players.
Autoruns can report Windows Explorer shell extensions, browser helper objects, auto-start services and much more.
There are many programs, services, and other items that load with Windows and this list grows longer over time. This might lead to much longer start-up times. Additionally, Adware, spyware and other unwanted software can automatically load with Windows. Autoruns helps you to find which program or service is automatically loaded with Windows.
Autoruns for Windows display seventeen different tabs, representing several types of start-up items, plus a general tab (Everything) that lists every single service or software in one place.
How to use Autoruns for Windows
- Run Autoruns .exe on your computer. The program should list everything that loads with Windows. At the start, you should look for entries highlighted in yellow and clear the tick box, these are the items which are not found on your system, but they try to load upon each boot. The changes are applied in real-time, so you can easily exit the Autoruns when you are finished.
- If you do not know what an entry is or whether it is necessary, right-click on the entry to see useful information about the process online. A web search reveals sites that provide more information about that specific program or entry which loads with Windows OS.
Useful tip: As soon as you install or run the software on your computer, you should save a log of all start-up items by going to File > Save menu or by pressing the CTRL+S. Save a new log from time to time simply because you can later compare the logs (from the File menu) and see the changes in your system from the last log. Once you do the Compare option, search for the lines highlighted in green because those lines represent latest items that were not present in the main log file before.
MSConfig is another start-up manager tool and it is included in Windows by default. You can use this tool to safely disable unwanted start-up items. If you wish to dig deeper into system problems or detect suspicious new additions that launch at start-up, there is no better tool than Autoruns for Windows.