How to configure Windows XP to start in a “clean boot” state

If your computer is not starting normally, or if you receive errors when you start your computer that you cannot identify, you could consider performing a “clean boot.” This operation starts the computer by using a minimal set of drivers and startup programs. This can help you troubleshoot the problem.

Start the System Configuration Utility

  1. Click Start, click Run, type msconfig, and then click OK.
  2. The System Configuration Utility dialog box is displayed.

Step 2: Configure selective startup options

  1. In the System Configuration Utility dialog box, click the General tab, and then clickSelective Startup.
  2. Click to clear the Process SYSTEM.INI File check box.
  3. Click to clear the Process WIN.INI File check box.
  4. Click to clear the Load Startup Items check box. Verify that Load System Servicesand Use Original BOOT.INI are checked.
  5. Click the Services tab.
  6. Click to select the Hide All Microsoft Services check box.
  7. Click Disable All, and then click OK.
  8. When you are prompted, click Restart to restart the computer.

Step 3: Log on to Windows

  1. If you are prompted, log on to Windows.
  2. When you receive the following message, click to select the Don’t show this message or launch the System Configuration Utility when Windows start check box, and then click OK.Notes
    • You have used the System Configuration Utility to make changes to the way Windows starts.
    • The System Configuration Utility is currently in Diagnostic or Selective Startup mode, causing this message to be displayed and the utility to run every time Windows starts.
    • Choose the Normal Startup mode on the General tab to start Windows normally and undo the changes you made using the System Configuration Utility.

Step 4: Optional step to disable features

If the clean boot fixed the error, you do not have to perform this step.

Important If your problem is not fixed and you do have to follow this step, it permanently removes all restore points from your computer. The System Restore feature uses restore points to restore your computer to an earlier state. If you remove the restore points, you can no longer restore Windows to an earlier state.

This step temporarily disables Microsoft features such as Plug and Play, networking, event logging, and error reporting.

  1. Click Start, click Run, type msconfig, and then click OK.
    The System Configuration Utility dialog box is displayed.
  2. Click the General tab, click to clear the Load System Services check box, and then click OK.
  3. When you are prompted, click Restart to restart the computer.

If these steps helped you start your computer in a clean-boot state, you are finished. If these steps did not help, go to the “Next Steps” section. If you have to return your computer to a normal startup state, go to “Steps to configure Windows to use a Normal startup state”.

Post By Gishore J Kallarackal (2,121 Posts)

Gishore J Kallarackal is the founder of techgurulive. The purpose of this site is to share information about free resources that techies can use for reference. You can follow me on the social web, subscribe to the RSS Feed or sign up for the email newsletter for your daily dose of tech tips & tutorials. You can content me via @twitter or e-mail.

Website: → Techgurulive