Under Windows 95 and 98 there are always a number of programs which load every time the PC is started which run constantly "hidden" in the background. These programs load via (a) shortcuts in the StartUp folder, (b) values in the Registry Run keys and (c) references on the load= and run= lines in the WIN.INI file.
Under Windows 95 when one wishes to disable such programs in an effort to troubleshoot problems (or simply to free up resources wasted by unnecessary programs) they must do so manually...dragging shortcuts out of the startup folder, editing the Registry using REGEDIT and adding semicolons to WIN.INI via SYSEDIT. In Windows 98 Microsoft makes disabling such TSR (Terminate and Stay Resident) "background" programs easy to disable via a very convenient utility called MSCONFIG however prior to Win98 complicated DIY procedures were required.
The freeware utilities available on this page are "MSCONFIG-like" utilities providing one easy-to-use central location where one can disable TSR programs from loading automatically at startup on either
a short-term or ongoing basis. They support the convenience of the
built in Win98 functionality under Windows 95.
StartUp Control Panel
StartUp Control Panel 2.5 is a small freeware utility by programmer Mike Lin which is available in two flavors: (a) a small standalone executable program which requires no installation which is run by Double-Clicking the program's icon, or (b) a small setup file which
adds a "Startup" icon to the user's Control Panel.
While there are a number of reasons I personally prefer the StartUp Control Panel utility (it's small size, the fact that no installation as such is required, the convenience of the Control Panel applet version) the one downside to it is that one cannot use it to disable programs loading from the run= and load= lines in WIN.INI.
While indeed loading programs via WIN.INI is an antiquated "hold-over" from Win 3.1 days and well over 98% of today's 32bit Win9x programs will load from either the Registry Run keys or StartUp shortcuts I find the omission of an ability to disable WIN.INI TSRs a shortcoming when it comes to troubleshooting startup problems, therefore I include the freeware app Startup Manager from Creative Gaffer's Software here.
Startup Manager 1.5 by Bradley Stowers is another excellent freeware utility in the MSCONFIG vein, and while it's larger, must be installed and may not be as simple to use as the StartUp Control Panel it does cover all bases by including WIN.INI and supports a few other minor tweaks that the smaller app doesn't. Take yer pick!
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