you can take to improve your computer's security
Windows 98 TIPS
Windows Shutdown Troubleshoouting
problems in Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows Millennium
Edition can be caused by many factors including, but not limited
to: a damaged exit sound file; incorrectly configured or damaged
hardware; conflicting programs, or an incompatible, damaged, or
conflicting device driver. This article can be used to
troubleshoot the possible causes.
Microsoft has acknowledged a shutdown and restart problem in
Special Discussion of some Windows Millennium Edition shutdown
problems and a possible Registry patch for them.
SHUTDOWN (For Windows 98 only.)
Launch MSCONFIG. Click Advanced. Place a check mark in the box
next to "Disable fast shutdown." (NOTE: If the box is
already marked, go to SECOND STEP. I the box is missing in
Windows 98 SE, it means you have already applied the Shutdown
Patch, which has permanently disabled Fast Shutdown and then
removed the box.) Click OK, then OK again. Test Windows shut
down by restarting the computer. (For proper troubleshooting,
click Start | Shut Down | Restart | OK. Give Windows three
minutes to complete the process before concluding that it is
hung. This same procedure is referred to in the following steps
as, "Test Windows shut down.") Disabling fast shutdown
may solve the problem; but if it doesn't, go on to SECOND STEP.
A shutdown troubleshooter is built right into Windows 98 and
Windows ME as well. It will take you through many, but not all,
of the steps recommended below. Some people may prefer this kind
of "walk-through" on-screen troubleshooter. To access
it, click Start | Help. In the window type Troubleshooting.
Click on the Troubleshooting entry in the menu. Scroll down the
new list provided and click on "Shutdown and Startup
Troubleshooter" (Win98) or "Startup & Shutdown
Troubleshooter" (Win ME).
Microsoft also has an on-line version of this
Startup/Shutdown Troubleshooting Wizard.
You can try one or the other version of this troubleshooter as
your next option if you wish; or simply continue through the
steps that follow.
||RULE OUT DAMAGED
EXIT SOUND FILE
In Control Panel, double-click Sounds (or Sounds &
Multimedia). In the Events box, click Exit Windows. In the Name
box, click None. Click OK. Test Windows shut down. If Windows
does not hang, the problem may be a corrupt sound file. Restore
the file from your Windows disk or wherever you obtained it and
then test Windows shut down.
An interesting variation on this
issue: One online correspondent has found (in Windows
Millennium) that when he had a shutdown problem and no Exit
Windows sound, the problem was resolved by adding one! If this
describes your situation -- give it a try!
||RULE OUT CLOGGED
TEMPORARY FILE FOLDERS
Manually deleting the contents of various temporary file
folders may solve the shutdown problem. Though these files can
be relocated on a given system, their default locations are
usually on the C: drive. Folders you might want to manually
clean include: TEMP, Temporary Internet Files, and MSDOWNLD.TMP.
If you have not moved them on your hard drive, the following
links will take you to your main temporary folders: TEMP,
Temporary Internet Files, MSDOWNLD.TMP.
AUTOEXEC.BAT or CONFIG.SYS COMMAND LINE PROBLEMS
(If there is neither an AUTOEXEC.BAT nor CONFIG.SYS file, or
if both are empty, go to SIXTH STEP. Otherwise:) FOR WIN95/98:
Rename AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS to AUTOEXEC.TMP and
CONFIG.TMP. FOR WINDOWS ME: Launch MSCONFIG, click Selective
Startup, uncheck the box Load Environment Variables. After doing
one of these procedures, test Windows shut down. If it hangs,
rename the files to the original names, or or reset MSCONFIG to
its prior status, and go to SIXTH STEP. If the system does not
hang, rename the files and proceed with these steps:
Restart Windows and bring up the Boot Menu. Choose
"Step-By-Step Confirmation." Press Y at each of the
following prompts if it occurs (press N for any other prompts):
a.. Load DoubleSpace driver
b.. Process the system registry
e.. Load the Windows graphical user interface
f.. Load all Windows drivers
NOTE FOR WIN ME: The above list needs to be tweaked a bit to
adapt it to Win ME. I have not yet done this, so things will
look a bit difference. However, if you follow the instructions
literally, and keep your common sense awake, you should be able
to do this just fine.
After Windows finishes loading, test Windows shut down. If the
system hangs, go to SIXTH STEP. If it shuts down properly, the
problem may be caused by a command line in the AUTOEXEC.BAT or
To determine which line is causing the problem, follow these
steps: Restart Windows, bringing up the Boot Menu as before.
Press Y for each of the prompts listed above, plus one
additional command. Press N for all other prompts. (You will
cycle through the additional lines, selecting a different
additional command each time until you have gone through them
all.) Each time, after Windows finishes loading, test Windows
shut down. Repeat the above until the shutdown problem occurs.
When the shutdown problem occurs, you have identified the
command causing the problem. Disable the command (using SYSEDIT
to edit the file containing the command, or, in Win98, MSCONFIG
to remove the check mark in front of the problematic item).
||RULE OUT VIRTUAL
DEVICE DRIVER / SYSTEM.INI PROBLEMS
Launch SYSEDIT. Click on the SYSTEM.INI window. Examine the
section [386Enh] and place a semicolon (;) at the beginning of
each line that begins with "DEVICE=" and ends with
".386." Save the changes and exit SYSEDIT. (NOTE: In
Win98 and Win ME, you can use MSCONFIG and merely uncheck such
lines in the [386Enh] section.) Reboot, then test Windows shut
down. If Windows hangs, restore the SYSTEM.INI file to its
original configuration. If Windows does not hang during
shutdown, a virtual device driver may be causing the problem.
Contact the driver's manufacturer for assistance.
||RULE OUT WIN.INI
COMMAND LINE PROBLEMS
Launch SYSEDIT. Click on the WIN.INI window and look for any
lines beginning with LOAD= or RUN=. Place a semicolon (;) at the
beginning of these lines if they have entries following the
equal (=) sign. Save the changes to the WIN.INI file and exit
SYSEDIT. (NOTE: In Win98 and Win ME, you can use MSCONFIG and
merely uncheck such lines on the WIN.INI tab.) If you did not
make changes, go to EIGHTH STEP; otherwise, reboot and then test
Windows shut down. If Windows continues to hang, remove the
semicolons, save the file and go to EIGHTH STEP. If Windows does
not hang, one of the disabled program entries may be to blame.
To determine the problem program, re-enable them one at a time
by removing the semicolon and resaving the file (or reenabling
in MSCONFIG). After each program is enabled, test Windows shut
||RULE OUT PROGRAMS
LOADED FROM STARTUP FOLDER
Restart Windows without any Startup folder programs loading.
FOR WIN98 or ME: Use MSCONFIG. Click Selective Startup. Remove
the check mark from in front of "Load startup group
items." Restart Windows. FOR WIN95: Restart the computer
and, as soon as the Windows desktop wallpaper appears, press and
hold the SHIFT key until Windows 95 finishes loading.
After doing one of these procedures, test Windows shut down. If
Windows hangs, go to NINTH STEP. If Windows shuts down properly,
determine the culprit by ruling out the programs one-by-one:
FOR WIN98 or ME: Use MSCONFIG. On the Startup tab, place a check
mark next to the first program item listed. Click OK, then OK.
FOR WIN95: Manually remove all but one of the shortcut icons
from the Startup folder.
FOR ALL VERSIONS OF WINDOWS: Test Windows shutdown. If Windows
shuts down properly, then the program that remained is not
causing the problem. Restore another startup program per the
appropriate method above. After each program is restored, test
Windows shut down. Continue re-enabling programs until you
either find the problem program (there may be more than one) or
all programs have been restored.
IMPORTANT WIN95 NOTE: Holding down the SHIFT key as soon as
Windows begins to load will launch Win95 in Safe Mode. (If you
wait for the desktop wallpaper to appear, it only suppresses
If Safe Mode is used,
a.. Items in the Startup folder not loaded
b.. Startup programs normally launched from the Registry are not
c.. Only basic system drivers are used -- protected mode drivers
normally launched from the Registry are not launched
d.. CONFIG.SYS or AUTOEXEC.BAT (already tested above) are not
e.. The [boot] and [386Enh] sections of SYSTEM.INI (already
tested above) are not executed (except that Load= and Run= lines
f.. Programs listed on Load= and Run= lines in the [windows]
section of WIN.INI, however, are not launched
g.. HIMEM.SYS is loaded with the /testmem:on switch and all
other switches suppressed
h.. IFSHLP.SYS is still loaded
i.. Dblbuff.sys (if present) is loaded with the /d+ switch
Therefore, for Win95 computers, if (1) all previous
troubleshooting steps have passed, and (2) this step causes
proper shutdown behavior after booting in Safe Mode, and (3)
removing all items in the Startup folder then rebooting in
normal mode does not produce proper shutdown behavior, then
Registry startup items, IFSHLP.SYS, and DoubleSpace or
DriveSpace must be considered as likely causes of the problem.
Detailed instructions for troubleshooting these items are not
given in the present article; if you do not know how to test
these steps, please seek help in the online peer support
newsgroups for these specific tasks. (See the well-titled
Knowledge Base article "How Windows 95 Performs a Safe-Mode
Start" for more details on the subject.)
EMM386-RELATED MEMORY CONFLICTS
(For Win95/98 only.)
A memory conflict sometimes exists when Emm386.exe is not loaded
from the CONFIG.SYS file. To test for this, launch SYSEDIT.
Click the CONFIG.SYS window. In the CONFIG.SYS file, make sure
the following lines exist in this order, at the very beginning
of the file:
DEVICE=C:\WINDOWS\EMM386.EXE NOEMS X=A000-F7FF
If you do not have a CONFIG.SYS file, create one with these
three lines. Save the modified CONFIG.SYS and close SYSEDIT.
Reboot, then test Windows shut down. If the system hangs,
restore your CONFIG.SYS file to its original configuration. If
it shuts down properly, see the following Microsoft Knowledge
Base article: "Locating and Excluding RAM/ROM Addresses in
||RULE OUT ADVANCED
POWER MANAGEMENT (APM) PROBLEMS
(Not all computers have APM features. If yours is one of them,
go to ELEVENTH STEP. Otherwise:) Right-click on My Computer,
select Properties, and click the Device Manager tab.
Double-click the System Devices branch to expand it.
Double-click Advanced Power Management Support in the device
list. Click the Settings tab. Click the Enable Power Management
check box to clear it. Click OK until you return to Control
Panel. (NOTE: This box does not exist in Win98 SE. Disable APM
from Control Panel | Power.) Reboot, then test Windows shut
down. If Windows shuts down properly, the problem may be caused
by APM, so contact the computer's manufacturer for assistance.
For additional information about shutdown problems with APM
enabled, see Microsoft Knowledge Base article: "Shutdown
Hangs After 'Please Wait While...' Screen"
Also, it makes sense to troubleshoot your power management
functionality per se. Microsoft has provided an excellent tool
for this, PMTShoot, or Power Management Troubleshooter. The
latest version (which is much better than the one shipped with
Windows) can be downloaded here.
||RULE OUT WINDOWS
FILE SYSTEM SETTINGS
Right-click on My Computer and select Properties. Click the
Performance tab. Click File System. Click the Troubleshooting
tab. Mark all the check boxes, click OK, click Close and click
Yes. Reboot, then test Windows shut down. If Windows shuts down
properly, the problem is related to the File System settings. Go
back and uncheck each box one at a time. Reboot and test Windows
shut down after each change to identify which item is the
||RULE OUT WINDOWS
DEVICE DRIVER PROBLEMS
See if a Windows device driver is causing the problem or if
an installed device is configured incorrectly or is improperly
functioning. Right click on My Computer and select Properties.
Click the Hardware Profiles tab. Click the hardware profile you
are currently using, and then click Copy. Type "Test
Configuration" in the To box. Click OK. (You may have to
reboot and select this configuration before proceeding.) Click
the Device Manager tab. Double-click any device, then click the
Test Configuration check box to clear it. Repeat this step until
you have disabled all devices but DO NOT disable any system
devices. When you are prompted to restart Windows, select NO.
(NOTE: If you disabled a PCI hard disk controller, choose Yes to
restart Windows. PCI hard disk controllers cannot be unloaded
dynamically.) Restart Windows and you will receive the following
message: "Windows cannot determine what configuration your
computer is in. Select one of the following:" Choose Test
Configuration from the list of configurations. As Windows
starts, you will receive the following error message: "Your
Display Adapter is disabled." To correct the problem, click
OK to open Device Manager. When the Display Properties dialog
box opens, click Cancel. Test Windows shut down. If Windows
hangs, go to THIRTEENTH STEP. If Windows shuts down properly,
the problem may be caused by a Windows device driver or a device
installed in your computer that is configured incorrectly or is
not functioning properly.
To determine which device driver or device is causing the
problem, go back into Device Manager. Double-click a device that
you disabled in step E above, then click the Test Configuration
check box to select it. When prompted to restart Windows, click
Yes. Test Windows shut down. Repeat this with each device until
the shutdown problem recurs. If the problem recurs, you have
identified the device or device driver causing the problem.
NOTE: If the shutdown problem is being caused by a Plug and Play
device that is configured incorrectly or isn't functioning
properly, removing the device from the current hardware profile
will correct the problem. After you remove the device from the
current hardware profile and restart Windows, the drivers
associated with the device are removed from memory and the
shutdown problem does not occur. However, as Windows restarts,
the Plug and Play device will be detected automatically and
installed in the current hardware profile. When you restart
Windows a second time, the drivers associated with the device
are again loaded in memory and the shutdown problem returns.
If Windows continues to hang on shutdown after you complete
steps the above steps, reinstall Windows to a different folder
to rule out the possibility of damaged files. If your computer
has a Plug and Play BIOS, reinstall Windows using the setup /p i
command to rule out a defective Plug and Play BIOS.
If Windows still hangs during the shutdown process after you
reinstall it, your computer may have faulty hardware or faulty
system components including RAM, the CPU, the motherboard or an
internal or external cache. Contact your computer's
manufacturer for assistance.
||USE BOOTLOG.TXT TO
IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM
If Windows still hangs during the shutdown process, create a
BOOTLOG.TXT file by restarting the computer, bringing up the
Boot Menu and selecting the option to create a boot log. Let
Windows load fully and then reboot normally. Examine C:\BOOTLOG.TXT
for "Terminate=" entries. These entries are located at
the end of the file and may provide clues as to the cause of the
problem. Each "Terminate=" entry should have a
matching "EndTerminate=" entry on a successful
shutdown. If the last line in the BOOTLOG.TXT file is "EndTerminate=KERNEL,"
Windows shut down successfully.
NOTE: For Win98 SE, if the BOOTLOG.TXT file ends on "EndTerminate=KERNEL"
and the computer still hangs at attempted shutdown, there is
significant reason to believe it will be fixed by the
CONFIGMG.VXD solution given in the Win98 Second Edition section
below. (Tip from Allan Smith.) If the last line in BOOTLOG.TXT
is one of the following entries, check the listed possible
Terminate=Query Drivers: Possible QEMM or other memory manager
Possible defective memory chips or damaged files. Possible need
to reinstall Windows.
Terminate=Unload Network: Possible conflict with real-mode
network driver in CONFIG.SYS file.
Terminate=Reset Display: Display problem. Disable video
shadowing (in your CMOS properties). You may also need an
updated video driver.
Terminate=RIT: Timer-related problems with the sound card or an
old mouse driver. You may need to install updated drivers for
Terminate=Win32: Problem with a 32-bit program blocking a
thread. An application is not shutting down properly. Try
closing all programs before you shut down Windows.
||RULE OUT INTERNAL
(For Win98 only.) Launch MSCONFIG. On the General tab, click
Advanced. Under Settings, click to clear the following check
boxes: (1) Disable System ROM Breakpoint; (2) Disable Virtual HD
IRQ; (3) EMM Exclude A000-FFFF. Click OK. Restart the computer.
If the computer restarts correctly, repeat the above steps,
restoring one of the disabled boxes each time. Continue
repeating these steps, selecting an additional check box each
time, until your computer fails to restart correctly. Once your
computer fails to restart correctly, repeat the above steps
again, but click to select all the check boxes except the last
check box that you selected; click to clear this check box.
PC SPEAKER DRIVER PROBLEMS
The PC Speaker driver (SPEAKER.DRV) can cause Windows to stop
responding at shutdown or startup. To disable the PC Speaker
driver, disable the "wave=speaker.drv" line in the
SYSTEM.INI file, then restart the computer.
BIOS EXPECTS IRQ 12 TO BE USED BY PS/2 PORT
On a computer with a BIOS that expects IRQ 12 to be in use by a
PS/2-style mouse port, but instead has a software-configurable
hardware device (such as a Plug and Play adapter) using IRQ 12,
Windows can hang on shutdown. To work around this problem,
reserve IRQ 12 in Device Manager, or change the IRQ for the
software-configurable device in Device Manager. (You may also
want to consider upgrading the BIOS in your computer to a later
version.) To reserve an IRQ with Device Manager: Right click on
My Computer and select Properties, click the Device Mangager
tab, double-click Computer. On the Reserve Resources tab, click
the Interrupt Request (IRQ) option, and then click Add. In the
Value box, click the IRQ you want to reserve. Click OK until you
return to Control Panel.
NETWORK CARD PROBLEMS
If a network card is installed in the computer, do the
following: Remove the network adapter from Device Manager. (To
do this, right-click on My Computer, click on Properties, click
on Device Manager, double-click on Network Adapters,
double-click the first device in the list, select the
"Disable in this hardware profile" check box, then
click OK; repeat for each device listed under Network adapters.)
Click Close. Restart your computer. After your computer
restarts, test Windows shutdown. A variation on this is the
following: Remove the network in Device Manager. Shut down
Windows. Physically remove the network card. Restart Windows.
Shut down Windows (observe whether it shuts down normally).
Reinstall the network card. Restart Windows and let it detect
the card as new hardware. (This has been known to work in at
least one case in Win98 SE, and should be tried for other
versions of Windows9x also.) A further variation is to remove
the network card and place it in another slot. MS-MVP Mark
Phillips reports repairing almost all shutdown problems in his
office environment by moving the network card. In fact, when he
had their OEM begin setting up the systems so that all PCI/AGP
boards are installed in every other slot, he completely wiped
out the problem (except on one machine that had a defective
ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE PROBLEMS
If your anti-virus software is set to scan your floppy drives on
shutdown, this can result in various symptoms including the
computer hanging on shutdown. Often (but not always) a clue will
be that the floppy drive light comes on during shutdown. The
solution is to disable this particular feature in the anti-virus
DISABLED NUMERIC DATA PROCESSOR
MS-MVP Ron Martell reports that a disabled numeric data
processor can cause shutdown problems. To check this, launch
System Properties (right-click on My Computer and select
Properties). Click on the Device Manager tab. Select "View
Devices by Connection" at the top. Click the + next to
"Plug and Play Bios" to expand that section. Click on
"Numeric Data Processor," then click Properties. Click
the Settings tab. Make sure "Never use the numeric data
processor" is NOT selected at the bottom.
RETURN CMOS TO FACTORY SETTINGS?
If the previous steps do not resolve the problem, try resetting
CMOS settings back to factory defaults. For information about
changing CMOS settings in your computer, consult the computer's
documentation or manufacturer. WARNING: Before you reset the
computer's CMOS settings back to the factory defaults, make sure
to write down the CMOS settings. WARNING: Do not try this step
unless you know what you are doing -- mistakes in this step can
result in your computer not working at all!