Autoruns by Sysinternals is one of the best free startup manager programs for disabling unwanted and un-needed startup programs, and services from starting up to make Windows startup faster, and run smoother with less slow down problems. Disabling startup programs, and services would make using Windows faster because startup programs, and services use up RAM, and CPU resources on your computer. The less free RAM, and CPU resources you have, the more your computer slow down when doing tasks like web browsing, gaming, and office work especially on a slower computer. By using Autoruns, and disabling startup programs, and services I don’t need to run during Windows start up, I am able to use Windows 8.1 on a computer with only a 1.86GHz dual core CPU, and 1 GB of RAM without experiencing much slow down. By unchecking startup programs, services, and other startup files which I don’t want running, my Windows RAM usage is usually under 512MB, and my CPU is not overly active after Windows startup. Using less RAM, and CPU resources should increase the battery life and power usage on laptops and desktops because your CPU and RAM are not running very intensely because it is being overloaded with startup programs and services.
Autoruns searches your startup folder, scheduled tasks, services, and other locations for startup programs which you can disable by unchecking them. Auto runs can disable more startup programs, and services than other startup managers.
I mainly use it to disable third-party startup program which make computers runs a lot slower when too many third party programs are installed. I find using Autoruns faster, and more effective at stopping startup programs than msconfig, and other startup managers which just look in the startup folder, but does not look in the registry, scheduled tasks, and toolbar folders to disable more startup programs like Autoruns.
Autoruns is simple to use. I just need to download its zip file from the Autorun’s website, and extract the zip file to my computer. When it is extracted, I click on the Autoruns file to open it. The zip folder also contains a help file which teaches you how to use Autoruns, and more advance features for Autoruns. In Autoruns, I only need to uncheck the startup programs, scheduled tasks, services, toolbars, and context menu items I don’t need to run. Autoruns is also organize in tabs like Everything, Scheduled tasks, services, drivers, etc to make finding categories of startup programs easier. After I reboot my computer the startup programs, scheduled tasks, services, toolbars, context menu items, and other things I uncheck won’t run during Windows startup anymore. I can always re-check the program if I find out that I want it to run, or need it to run when I use Windows.
There are also more advance options to delete, Copy, and Search Online items in Autorun when I use my mouse to right-click individual entries in Autoruns.
It can even be used to disable right click menu items, and toolbar menus which can slow down your computer if there are too many right click menu shortcuts, and toolbars enabled on a PC.
Autoruns also opens very quickly, and is fast to use in my experience. It is also only 500KB to download from the internet, and does not require installation like other Startup managers. I can even run Autoruns from a USB storage drive like a flash drive or external hard drive. Autoruns also work on Windows XP and newer versions of Windows.
I recommend not unchecking entries from Microsoft, your antivirus and firewall programs, and programs which you regularly use in Windows.
You can download Autoruns for free from Microsoft’s MSDN at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb963902.aspx