Windows 7 Will Not Shut Down Properly

Hello all,

I'm going a bit out of my head here. Usually I am very good at googling up answers to my computer problems, but I haven't been able to find anything that is exactly like the problem I am having.

I am running windows 7 64 bit on my desktop PC. I have had it for...something like a year and a half now. And just in the last couple weeks I have suddenly had this problem. The issue is that my Windows apparently cannot shut down properly. It shuts down, there is no hanging up or anything. Any time I shut down or restart, it goes to the blue "Shutting Down" screen and message, the cursor does it's rotating "timing" thing, and then the system shuts down. But when it restarts, I get the "Windows did not shut down successfully" and it asks me if I want to start in one of the safe mode variations, or to start normally. Every single time. Windows shuts down, but then restarts and tells me it did not shut down properly. And many changes I made before shutting down were not retained, but some are. For example, I patched a game, and that information was retained on restart. But I moved some desktop icons around, bookmarked some pages in Firefox, closed Firefox pages, changed msconfig for a clean boot, and none of those changes were retained.

I have gotten a screen freeze and BSOD a couple of times in the last few weeks as well, but only a couple of times, while the "failure to shut down properly" problem happens with every single shutdown and restart I do.

I'm losing my mind a bit here. The only real practical problem it's causing me at the moment is that every time I restart my computer, I have to rearrange my desktop icons, and every time I open Firefox, it wants to restore a session I had closed and exited from, and I can't bookmark any websites. It's annoying, but doesn't keep me from functioning. But I fear/suspect there are larger problems lurking underneath, and I would just really like to get this resolved. If anyone can help, I would be eternally grateful. Let me know what I might need to upload or what other information you might need. Thanks so much for your time.


Honorable Member
Microsoft MVP
Random Hi and welcome

Nice post. Can you go into event viewer and see what errors are generated on shutdown? I suspect a driver is taking too long to respond and windows if having to force shutdown.

There are several ways to find what the problem is. The best is to go into event viewer (type eventvwr in search). Go to the windows log>application tab (and after that the system tab)

You want to look for critical errors (they have red in the left column ).

When you find them you want to look for critical errors that say app hang, app crash, or anything that relates to the problem.

When you find them please note the event ID, and the source codes and tell us what they are.


Senior Member
there was part of the registry you can change to increase the shutdown rate thus shutting the pc down quicker, ill do some reasearch for you

There are a few things you could try for this;

1. Start/Run type in SFC /scannow, then ok.

2. Insert your Windows 7 DVD and do a "Startup Repair"

3. To speed up the shut down time as Kaos mentioned try the following;

  1. Click on Start.
  2. Open Run command and type regedit.
  3. In the regedit go at the following Location:

  4. In the right pane, right click on WaitToKillServiceTimeout and click on Modify.
  5. Type in a number between 2000-20000 (2-20 seconds) and click on OK.
  6. Now Close regedit.
  7. Restart your PC.

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