[Fix] Windows 7 Takes Long Time On Shutdown Screen

One of our readers wrote to us about his problem which is quite common with many Windows 7 users. He describes the problem as:

Computer won’t shutdown for a long time. When I click shut down, the screen shows shutting down. But it wont for a long time. The small circle keeps on rotating beside ‘shutting down’. What could be the problem?
Shutting down will be delayed when there are updates to be installed. But no such things are shown on the screen. I need to force shutdown by pressing power button for few seconds. Is there any harm in doing so? This happened twice since yesterday.

This problem maybe applicable for Windows 8 as well as the core is quite similar. In this article, we will share some of the potential reasons behind this problem and how to resolve this problem.Windows 7 Shutting Down

Some of the reasons behind the Slow shutdown of Windows 7 or Windows in general includes below problems / factors which need to be addressed to make Windows shut down faster:

  • Too many tasks / programs or applications running preventing shutdown
  • Problems with hard disk performance
  • Problem With Internet Explorer Temporary Files Cache
  • Page File Clear Settings In Windows Registry
  • Too many services running in background


At shutdown, Windows closes all running tasks and services and clears up some of the memory areas etc. before it safely shuts down the PC. In this process, certain things may create problems as mentioned above. Let us looks at these problems one by one and share their solution:

Too many tasks / programs or applications running preventing shutdown

If you have noticed a screen like one below while you shutdown your Windows PC, this means that there are programs which are open and Windows is waiting for them to close. This usually happens when you have some unsaved work open like an open word document, excel sheet, a folder on the network or maybe anything. To avoid waiting for such tasks to be closed at shutdown, its advisable you save your work, close running applications manually before you hit the shutdown button. This is greatly reduce the wait in the shutdown process.

too many programs running

Problems with hard disk performance

On older computers where the hard disks might be too full or have any sort of problem, shutdown may be slower and the overall performance of such PCs tend to degrade. Windows uses hard disks for various operations and a slower hard disk means slower operations. To solve this we recommend you do a hard disk health check, and defragment the disk and run disk cleanup if you have low free disk space. A faster and healthy disk will also improve the overall performance of your PC.

Problem With Internet Explorer Temporary Files Cache

As per Microsoft official knowledge page sometime Internet Explorer Temporary files may also cause slow shutdown, to fix this problem, you can follow below steps:

  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Double-click Internet, and then click the Advanced tab.
  3. Under Security, click the “Delete saved pages when browser closed” check box to select it, and then click OK.

Page File Clear Settings In Windows Registry

If your Windows PC has registry setting to clear page file at shutdown, it may take longer time to shutdown. To change this settings you need to change a registry setting. Follow below steps to make these changed:

  1. Press Windows Key + R, this will open run prompt, type regedit and press enter.
  2. This will open registry editor, browse to the following key : \HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management
  3. Click on the value ClearPageFileAtShutdown and change its value to 0

clear page file at shutdown

Close registry editor and re-start the computer.

Too many services running in background

There maybe too many service or startup items in your PC which might make it too slow. There is a simple tool called Soluto to make Windows Boot Faster, which will help you optimize the same and make your computer perform faster and also shut down faster as there will be less load on the PC.

We hope you find the above tips useful, do share them with your friends and leave a comment below if it helps you.


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