Windows XP Startup Delay

By litw
Oct 20, 2009
  1. I have a Dell Inspiron 8600 laptop.

    So, I've had this issue for a LONG time, and am really sick and tired of it. Here goes.

    I often reinstall Windows XP (like every 6 months) to get rid of all the program baggage and registry overhead that is accumulated during normal use. I found this to be the only way to get the computer back in tip-top shape. Anyway, sometimes after following my fairly systematic install checklist, I encounter a sudden delay in the startup. And once I encounter the delay (by up to a minute), I can never remove it without completely restarting the XP install.

    So let me explain the delay. The system will boot through the Dell Intro screen, and then then Windows will quickly run through the autologin, display the background image, the intro sound clip will play, and then the system will just sit there. The only thing shown is the background image - no bottom toolbar. The hard disk is barely being used. It basically appears like the computer is doing nothing. And then, after 30-60 seconds, it suddenly starts hitting the hard drive and the menus and desktop items appear.

    So, I've tried to narrow down the problem. So far, I've reinstalled XP again, only installing some basic apps like Norton, Adobe Reader, Itunes, and MS Office. I disabled all non-Microsoft services, and have disabled all secondary startup Items. Now, with this minimal installation, the delay which I've described is much lower than normal, but it is still there (maybe 5-10 seconds). I have run the utility BootLog XP to try to identify which program - but the results are not conclusive. There are relatively few services running at startup, so the list of possible culprits is getting small.

    Anyone have any insight on this issue?
  2. WinXPert

    WinXPert TS Guru Posts: 445

    Run HJT I like to see the logs.
    Ok let's trim your apps that starts with Windows. Launch CCleaner. Run Cleaner and Scan for Issues and Fix selected issues... Create a backup when the prompts appears just in case. Now go to Tools | Startup and disable all except your antivirus. Post your specs. Reboot.
  3. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    Would suspect Norton is doing some basic checks before your services begin. Adobe reader can also be phoning home for an update (nortorious for that - it can be turned off, and will turn itself on again with every update - ditch it all, use Foxit, so much better).

    Same goes for a vast amount of rubbish people run these days without the least idea of what they are doing and no idea how to control them.
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