How to Disable Startup Applications in Windows 8

Rushing to get an urgent task done, you turn on your computer. Once it is on, you notice that you can hardly navigate through your system because it is running too slow. And so you wait and wait – for what seems like an eternity – until your computer is finally ready for you to start working. Sadly, many people find themselves in those kinds of situations. While their computer may function properly, it takes a long time to run smoothly after turning it on. This article will show you how to disable startup applications in Windows 8 and speed up your computer startup time.

Note: There are several third party software that can get the jobs done too, but in this article, we are focused on using the native tools in Windows to do the job.

1. Using the Task Manager to Disable Startup Applications

Traditionally, the Microsoft System Configuration has been one of the main utilities that allows you to remove startup programs. While this utility is still there, it no longer provides this function. Instead, Microsoft has incorporated this feature into the Task Manager.

To run the Task the Manager, right-click the the bottom left corner of the screen and select “Task Manager” (or press Ctrl + Alt + Delete).

Disable Startup Applications in Windows 8 task manager

If you see the simplified version of the Task Manager, click “More Details.”

Disable Startup Applications - Task manager simplified view

Go to the “Startup” tab, select the app you don’t want to run in the startup and then click “Disable.” This will prevent the app from starting the next time Windows is trying to start.

Disable Startup Applications - task manager tab

Method 2: Using the Startup Folder to Disable Startup Applications

The startup folder also contains applications that run during the startup. Accessing this folder is a cumbersome process since it is deeply rooted within the operating system. A quick way to access it is by using the Run utility.

Right-click the bottom left corner of the screen and select “Run” (or press Winkey + R).

Run Startup Applications

Type %AppData% in the search field and click “OK.” This opens the Roaming folder.

appdata in Run dialog

Go to the “Startup” folder, which can be done by following the file path shown below:

appdata file path in Windows Explorer

Once you have accessed the “Startup” folder, right click on an app you want to remove and select “Disable.” This will prevent the app from starting the next time Windows is trying to start.

Disable Startup Applications - appdata disable app

Is it Really Worth Your Time to Disable Startup Applications?

One thing is definitely for certain – it is not worth your time waiting for an eternity for your computer to start. A computer that is bogged down by startup programs saps away your precious time. If the problem is serious enough, it can cause you to be late for certain tasks. However, fixing this issue is quick and easy.

The procedures mentioned above can be done in less than one minute. In contrast, a computer that is overwhelmed by startup apps no doubt costs you more time than that. Thus, it is definitely worth disabling startup apps you don’t need. In fact, you should check your startup list every now and then to keep your computer always running smoothly.

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One comment

  1. what is the difference between the startup folder referenced from the “roaming folder” and the following:
    c:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

    This is where i am finding my startup programs, not in the original reference.

    Also, I am only finding some of the startup programs – not all that are listed in the startup tab of the task manager – any idea why?

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