To shut down your computer or put it to sleep? That is the question. If you aren't up to speed on the debate over whether you should shut your computer down or leave it on overnight, you can read more about it here.
One of the biggest reasons people leave their computers on is because it takes practically forever to start up again. Who has the time to sit and wait for your computer to boot up? Not me.
The biggest culprits behind slow startups are autorun programs. Autorun programs start whenever your operating system boots, and they all do it at the same time.
Eventually, you end up with a huge logjam of activity as each program hogs your computer's processing power.
But you don't need to start these programs at the same time. In fact, some of them you might not use at all, and you don't want to be wasting precious memory on your computer for programs you don't need.
Unfortunately, tracking down autorun programs and preventing them from turning on automatically isn't the easiest thing to do in Windows.
That's why there's Autoruns for Windows. It's a free program that tells you every program set to run at startup and the start order. You can easily disable ones you don't need.
The first time you use Autoruns, you might be surprised at how many entries there are. Fortunately, Autoruns organizes programs by category, so it's easier to tell if you need the program or not.
For example, you don't want to disable any device drivers or security software. To disable an entry, simply uncheck the box. To delete an entry, use the red X in the toolbar.
When you delete an entry from the list, you are NOT removing it from your system, so you can always run it manually after your computer starts.