RAYMOND OGLESBY @RaymondOglesby2
April 19, 2022
Sometimes you need to shut down your Windows 10 or 11 PC, but thanks to something called Fast Startup, you might not be shutting it down all the way, with a fresh OS reload on the next power-up. Let’s explore how to really shut down your desktop completely.
This is for Windows 10 and 11. Screenshots are from Windows 10
Usually, you do not need to shut down your PC. Sleep Mode can place your PC into a low-power state that is quick to resume whenever you need to use your PC again.
But there are times when you might want to shut down your PC in a way that forces Windows 10 or 11 to reload completely when you boot it back up.
With a feature called Fast Startup, many PCs that support hibernation mode actually “shut down” to a state similar to hibernation, which saves the state of the operating system (in RAM) to a file called hiberfil.sys. This lets Windows load quickly when you power up your PC again.
So if Fast Startup is enabled on your PC and you select Shut Down in the Start menu, you are not getting a clean restart when you power it back up again.
Disable Fast Startup
It’s important to know that not all PCs support Fast Startup mode. So your PC might already be shutting down completely. (Restarting bypasses Fast Startup, as shown in the last section of this post). You will see another way to tell in the steps ahead.
To disable Fast Startup, first, open the Control Panel in Windows 10 or 11. For Windows 10, type “control panel” in the Cortana search box, then click the Control Panel app in the search results. For Windows 11, open the Start menu and type “control panel,” then click the Control Panel icon when it appears. Refer to the below image:
Next, when the Control Panel opens, click Hardware and Sound section. See the below image:
Now, under the Power Options section, click Change what the power buttons do link. See the following image:
Next, on the Define power buttons and turn on password protection page, first, click the Change settings that are currently unavailable link near the top of the page.
Now, look under the Shutdown Settings section near the bottom. If you see Turn on fast startup (recommended), remove the checkmark beside it. Refer to the below image:
Note: If you do not see the Fast Startup option, it means your PC does not support Fast Startup and is already shutting down completely, so no changes are necessary.
Next, click Save Changes and exit the Control Panel.
The next time you shut down your Windows PC, it will shut down completely without any hibernation. And the next time you start it up, you will get a clean boot with a full reload of Windows.
It’s important to note that if you need a completely clean Windows boot, you can also achieve it by using the “Restart” feature built into Windows; no disabling Fast Startup is necessary. Restarting this way bypasses Fast Startup if you have it enabled. Microsoft implemented it this way because people often restart their computers to fix problems, and a full shutdown and restart might refresh the Windows system kernel or your computer’s hardware drivers if either is stuck in a bad state.
To restart your PC, first, click the Start menu, then select the Power icon (located on the left side in Windows 10 and on the right side in Windows 11). In the menu that pops up, select Restart. See the below image:
Your PC will restart completely with a fresh reload of Windows, which will hopefully solve any temporary problems that you have been troubleshooting.
Quote For the Day
The person who dumps garbage into your mind will do you considerably more harm than the person who dumps garbage on your floor, because each load of mind garbage negatively impacts your possibilities and lowers your expectations.Zig Ziglar
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