XP Pro cannot Shutdown -- regedit appeared as a process is the cause

Posted on 2005-04-11
Last Modified: 2010-10-05
I have an XP Pro Pc that refuses to shut down.

I can shut it down if I CTRL+ALT+DEL dosconnect myself as user, and shutdown.


I decide to track down the problem.  I notice that regedit appears as a process -- right after I boot up.

When I end regedit as a progress.  I have not problem shutdown the system via Start button.

Question:  How to track down what cause regedit to load up?
Question:  How to ensure that regedit is not loaded as a process
Question by:sayhow
    LVL 65

    Expert Comment

    Boot to safemode and check there if regedit.exe is running there also?
    if NO then come back to normal mode, Goto Start>Run>msconfig>Startup, and click on Disable All
    now goto Services section, and tick Hide Microsoft Services
    and now untick all those third party services
    restart and now check if the same problem ??
    if NO then u can re-enable each application\service at a time to trace out the culprit one !!

    If still you face the same issue, then do one thing, Download HijackThis from here, run it and Save the LOG file >>
    Then Post that log at this site >>
    click the Analyse button, scroll down to the bottom, hit the Save Analyse link, a new page will open, just post here the address of that new page, let's check out that from where and why this regedit.exe is running?
    LVL 57

    Expert Comment

    by:Pete Long
    Windows XP shutdown Problems?

    M$ identifies hardware and Software all the time that can cause shutdown problems Make sure you have all the latest Service Packs and Hot Fixes.

    Have your Power settings been set up correctly?

    Windows when it was installed takes your power setup from the settings in your BIOS, and sometimes gets it wrong! Occasionally it will read you power setting as APM (Advanced Power Management) when in fact it should be ACPI (Advanced configuration Power Interface) To see how your system is set up do the following,

    Start > Run > type "Devmgmt.msc" {Enter}

    Expand the "System Devices" node

    You will either see ACPI nodes or NT APM Legacy support
    (NB you may need to click on View and "show hidden devices")

    If you see ACPI nodes ensure they are running correctly and have no problems (double click them)

    If you see NT APM Legacy Nodes, If they are disabled enable them, if they are enabled, disable them.

    The above is only a temporary Fix!! You will need to ensure the power settings are correct in you BIOS, and possibly get the latest BIOS update from the motherboard manufacturer. After you have "flashed" the BIOS you will need to perform a "refresh" install of Windows XP.

    Check the settings in "Power Management"

    Start >Control Panel > Power Options, and ensure everything is set up properly.


    Also Check all Your Hardware Devices are supported by XP


    Is a program Keeping windows up and running?

    Windows XP gives all running programs 20 seconds (by default) to close down, some older applications may need a bit of extra time, and you can make a registry change to allow for this.

    Start > Run > type "regedit" {Enter}

    Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\control panel\desktop\

    Locate the WaitToKillApp timeout value and double click it, it should be set to 20000  (don't panic this is in milliseconds = 20 seconds) put in a higher value and retest the system.)

    Do you have an NVIDIA graphics card? (if not skip this section)

    There is a problem with a service used by this graphics card, in particular the "Nvidia driver helper service"

    Start >Run > type "services.msc" {Enter}

    Look down the list of services to find the "Nvidia driver helper service" and double click it to view its properties, set the startup type to "disabled" and click OK.

    Do You use Roxio CD Burning Software? (Particularly Version 5) It can conflict with Windows XP’s built in burning software (also roxio)

    See for updates.

    Still no Joy?

    Try these links for more Info


    You May Not Be Able to Shut Down Your Windows XP Computer;EN-US;320008

    Computer Does Not Shut Down Properly if Selective Suspend Is Enabled;EN-US;315664

    Computer Hangs During Shutdown or Displays a "Cannot Find Enough Free Resources" Error Message;EN-US;314101

    Your Computer May Not Shut Down After You Upgrade to Windows XP;EN-US;313290

    Windows XP Stops Responding (Hangs) During Windows Shutdown;EN-US;307274

    Computer Hangs if USB Selective Suspend Option of USB Mouse Is On;EN-US;317673

    Your Computer May Stop Responding When You Shut Down and Use Only the 802.1x Protocol for User Authentication;EN-US;311787

    Shutdown registry hack/fix (number 76)

    Author Comment

    Thanks all for the reply.

    Hi  SheharyaarSaahil .
    I had analysed using the latest hijackthis -- and have the log file analysed at -- no problem, and regedit does not  appear in there.

    I will check again.

    I had also check the process that were running under Safe mode.  There is no regedit.


    I can only use  your instructions on MSCONFIG in another 10 hours or when I get site -- I am in Asia -- on a little red dot.  (That is how a former President of Indonesia describe my country :-))

    THe quickest I think is to loookin the boot up log files.  I was unable to do as the user decide to close up as it well past her working hour.


    Thanks PeteLong.

    I have serached extensively on the internet, and are aware of many of the available soutions.

    In the case that I am trying to resolve, I found regedit as a running process at startup, I am interested in finding out how it get there, and to stop it from loading.  If it is not there, (by removing it using End Process), I can shutdown  the PC.

    I would appreciate a specific answer to what I want.


    LVL 57

    Accepted Solution

    >>I found regedit as a running process at startup


    Most programs launch from the following registry Key

    NOTE the startup list in msconfig is populated from here
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Shared Tools\MSConfig\startupreg

    use this to control what is launching at boot
    Autoruns works on all versions of Windows.
    LVL 65

    Expert Comment

    >> I had also check the process that were running under Safe mode.  There is no regedit
    that's a relief! :)

    Author Comment

    Hi all,

    Using the autoruns, I am able to turn off all the autoload processes one by one.  (i was able to determine that autorun keeps a record of what it turn off -- that's good.)
    Then I turn on each autoload process, and check the memory to see whether regedit is loaded.

    I was able to determinedf that it was caused by Symantec's Norton Anti-Virus.  I was left left with two processes not selected, and regedit does not appear.

    On checking Symantec web sites, Syamatec reported the problem, and suggested running life update.

    During running the live updater, it has problem replacing one of the DLL, which I deleted (after ending all Nortoin related processes.)

    With the live update done, a reboot shows that the regedit is no longer there, and the system can shut down/restart  via START, SHUTDOWN slection.

    LVL 57

    Expert Comment

    by:Pete Long

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