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Win 7 won't soft shutdown/reboot (but works in Safe Mode)

By Mugsy ยท 27 replies
Feb 27, 2017
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  1. For some reason, my computer won't Shutdown or Reboot when I do either from Windows. It'll go through the entire shutdown process... exit Windows, say it is "Shutting down", the busy icon spins & stops, the screen goes black, but my computer stays on, forcing me to use the buttons on my PC to power-off or Restart. I discovered this after shutting down for the night only to find it still on the next morning.

    As a test, I tried it from Safe Mode and Shutdown/Reboot works just fine. I also tested "Safe Mode with Networking" in case it was a network issue, and that works too.

    I've tried disabling every Service and Startup app using Msconfig, but it didn't help. I even tried disabling the two Devices disabled in Safe Mode (my Battery Backup and a "VMWare VMCI Host device") and it didn't help.

    I've done multiple AV scans using Avast, Kasperski's TDSS Killer, Bitdefender (online), Eset AV (online) and Malwarebytes. None of them found anything wrong.

    I checked the Event Viewer logs. No errors are reported during shutdown.

    My Power Profile is unchanged from before (never turn off screen or power down drives when plugged in.)

    My system has run fine for years. The only thing "new" recently was that I bought a brand new (not used or Refurbished) Win10 tablet the same day this started and used it to access the Shared Files/Folders on my Win7 desktop.

    By the time I realized I was having a problem, any Restore Points from before the problem started had already been lost (the scourge of having a small 120GB SSD as my C: drive.) I backed everything up then tried restoring an old Backup from last July but ran into trouble (Windows refused to boot) and had to put my current config back.

    I tried to do a Repair from the installation DVD, but it says my version of Windows "is too new" (???) to perform a repair. I also purchased a copy of "EasyRE Pro Repair for Windows 7", but it didn't resolve the problem.

    I've searched Google and the MS Community Support Forums. Plenty of other people with similar issues, but none of them apply to me: I already have Service Pack 1 installed, nothing has changed in my CMOS/BIOS, I've done a full check of all my drives, I ran SFC /scannow and it found nothing wrong.

    I'm stumped. Anyone have any ideas? TIA.

    Hardware:

    64bit Win7 Home.
    Home-built PC. Gigabyte Z87-UD4H Motherboard, watercooled overclocked 4770k cpu.
    16GB of DDR3-2133 memory.
    All MS Updates installed.
    Avast free AV software.
    nVidia GTX670.
    C: drive: 120GB Corsair "Force GT" SSD.

    Windows otherwise runs perfectly, though initially, sporadically, I encountered an unusual number of "Windows Explorer" (the desktop GUI) crashes that appear to have stopped. Not sure if that's related, but someone mentioned it in another thread while having a similar problem.

    Help. TIA.
     
  2. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    Sounds like a real PIA.

    I'm wondering if a search on file date of "I bought a brand new (not used or Refurbished) Win10 tablet the same day" would turn up a Win10 file or change in your Win7 machine.

    Or if powercfg from prompt might define something better (https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc748940(v=ws.10).aspx)
     
  3. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks for the reply.

    Unfortunately, I used my PC all day, so there are too many potential files with that same date on it to identify one that may have "infected" my computer.

    But even if something like that happened, one of a half dozen different AV/Adware/Malware scans should have picked something up.
     
  4. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    Sorry, not looking for virus - looking for installation of something incompatible (program or driver). Should only be a hundred or so files and most are data.

    Did you try powercfg?
     
  5. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks for the reply.

    I did a search of my "Windows" folder for anything (including hidden files/folders) added on the days in question and it found too many results for me to tell if any of them might be suspicious.

    I noted in my post that using Msconfig to disable all running apps & Services didn't resolve the issue, so the problem isn't a questionable app added to "Program Files".

    I also looked at "powercfg". But this isn't a Power Settings issue either. :(
     
  6. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    I suggested the search because it is apparently integral with the OS (did not show in sfc, but goes away in safe mode). I was wondering if a Win10 tablet could push something into your Win7 system - so it should be on the single day that the Win10 tablet was introduced (probably wishful thinking).

    Powercfg offers much more flexibility and power than the GUI version - so I was thinking that a reset and redetermination of power control might work on a minor twist set up in the GUI. " the screen goes black, but my computer stays on, forcing me to use the buttons on my PC to power-off or Restart" sounds like a power kind of problem.

    Beyond that, all I can offer are condolences.
     
  7. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks. Is there a way to reset the Power Profile from the Powercfg cli?
     
  8. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

  9. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks. I saw that page but Reset/Clear are not among the options. The closest option is "Delete an existing profile" (which I don't want to do) and I don't think that resets you back to the defaults.

    I noticed that my computer is acting very much like it's "Hibernating", except that nothing "Wakes up" the computer when it's like this. I've hit multiple keys, and the mouse LED is off so moving/clicking doesn't work. Even the briefest touch of the Power button shuts the computer completely off by that point. But I shouldn't have to do that (or wait for it so I can.)
     
  10. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    Which is why I use powercfg to kill hibernation.

    Example: powercfg-h off
     
  11. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks. Good suggestion, but it didn't help. :(

    Only thing left I can think of is to start disconnecting hardware through the Device Manager. :(
     
  12. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Okay, something new/weird.

    I was trying to update the driver for my old nVidia GTX670 video card because every time I tried to install the latest driver (downloaded from their site), it reported "Installation Failed." So I used a special utility ("Display Driver Uninstaller") to completely remove all trace of the existing driver from my system, and after I did, I was suddenly able to Shutdown & Reboot normally once again! Bizarre!

    BUT... this does not appear to be a Driver issue. I tried an older version I used before and it didn't fix the problem. Ditto for trying the latest driver. The computer continues to refuse to Shutdown/Reboot as long as I have a video card driver installed.

    I believe removing my vcard driver "works" because when I reboot, my UPS software reports "Hibernation mode disabled." But I tried disabling "Hibernation mode" myself from the CLI ("powercfg -h off") and it made no difference. Replacing my GTX with a generic vcard using a generic VGA driver "worked", but the UPS continued to report "Hibernation Mode disabled", suggesting the problem isn't the card/driver.

    And yes, I tried resetting my Power Profile back to the system defaults.

    "Hibernating" the PC wouldn't leave all lights & fans running anyway after sitting all night (or would it? Actually, I never used "Hibernate" mode. Would all lights & fans stay on until all memory was saved?), so I don't think the PC is going into hibernation when I attempt a Shutdown or Reboot (and why am I having this problem NOW after working just fine for years?) I can't go without a video card driver or support for my UPS.

    So I'm stuck. Any ideas anyone?
     
  13. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    UPS software? What UPS software? Is there an update? What do you have for UPS?

    Mugsy, could UPS software conflict with nVidia drivers? Is there support for your UPS?

    Note, the problem goes away when you go in safe mode...and my bet is that neither UPS software nor nVdia drivers are running then.
     
  14. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thx for the reply.

    Moments ago, I tried completely uninstalling the software for my APC backup power supply, but it didn't help. It's APC's own Power Management software and it never gave me a problem before. There's an update, but it's for Win10 and I'm using Win7.

    You are correct that neither devices' software runs in Safe Mode. But note in my original post, I tried disabling all running apps using Msconfig and it didn't help.

    I don't think the PC is trying to Hibernate when I attempt a Shutdown or Restart, but how can I tell? Almost zero disk activity once the screen goes black, and Shutdown/Restart shouldn't be performing a "hibernate" anyway. :(

    Thanks.
     
  15. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    Safe Mode - minimal system drivers
    Clean Boot - no 3rd party drivers (using msconfig)

    Not synonymous. Safe Mode is closest to the metal.

    Seems your issue is in the stuff between which includes some stuff in the Windows OS (like hibernate and power configuration).

    Sfc /scannow in SAFE MODE might solve it. Download a new WIndows7 ISO might help (https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/software-download/windows7).
     
  16. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thx for the reply. I just sent the following update to Nvidia but I don't hold out much hope:
    Any ideas?
     
  17. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

    Wipe all nVidia, use DDU to clean, install "clean" drivers ONLY (no 'experience' or 3d or controls - just plain driver and Physx).
     
  18. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    (Sorry for the late reply.)

    Good suggestion. I switched my monitor cable back over to my GTX670 (I've been using onboard video for the past day. Lower rez and slow, but better than VGA and powering off by hand), went into Safe Mode, did a "Clean" install of ONLY the driver (using nVidia's latest driver downloaded off their site) and nothing else (not even PhysX.) The driver installed w/o error (when installing from Safe Mode, "PhysX" and "Geforce Experience" aren't even offered as options) but the problem did not go away. :(

    First successful install of the driver using nVidia's driver installer, so we now know two things:

    1) The errors from the Installer software are exclusively due the added software/features.

    2) Those added features (or their bad installs) are not responsible for why I can't Shutdown/Reboot normally.

    But at least I was able to eliminate one possible cause from my list. Thx.
     
  19. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,322   +788

    Hibernate writes a Resume File and then does a complete power off. Press the Pon key and you will see it Resuming Windows.

    Create a BAT file on the desktop with this content:
    • %windir%\System32\rundll32.exe powrprof.dll,SetSuspendState
    when desired, dbl-click on the file and the system WILL go to a power-off state
     
  20. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Very interesting. This is very close to what's happening when I try to Shutdown/Reboot. When I launch the shortcut, the screen goes black but my lights & fans stay on, and the only way back is to press the Power or Reset button.

    The only difference is when I do S/R, the computer goes through the normal shutdown process (the "Shutting down" busy screen) first and there is less disk activity. But it does appear S/R is somehow resulting in "Suspend" mode for some unknown reason. Very odd.

    Thanks for your help on this.
     
  21. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus TS Evangelist Posts: 2,541   +473

  22. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,322   +788

    It is not instantaneous, a takes some time to finalize and power off. Exercise some patience....
     
  23. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Was overnight patient enough? :(
     
  24. Mugsy

    Mugsy TS Guru Topic Starter Posts: 391   +14

    Thanks for the reply.

    Video was never a problem. The driver always installed, just not the extras (while the nVidia installer always reported "failure", the video driver itself always installed.)

    I tried using powercfg way back when you first mentioned it and it was no help. I've reset my Power Profile to the defaults and have tried turning "Hibernate" on/off but that did nothing either.

    I'll check out that link tonight, though it appears to be about not being able to put the computer to Sleep (which I can't do either) not Shutdown/Reboot, but the problems may be related. Thx.
     
  25. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,322   +788

    Clearly :sigh: should have been about one minute.
     

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