Turning a Windows system "OFF" (from 'Start> Turn Off Computer...' button) is not the best way to put your system away for the night (or extended periods) and ►► forcing a shutdown with the power button is NEVER a good option; only a last resort.
It prevents Windows from 'housekeeping' system files to get ready for the next start-up. Windows needs to systematically close the multiple services that are normally running.
These are the 'backstage' items you don't normally see; which would be different from a 'program' you have open.
►► If they aren't done step by step, it tends to leave unresolved issues with these services, which over time, and repeatedly done, causes increasingly bigger problems and may break Windows completely.
A vastly improved method is 'Hibernation'.
Shutdowns using the 'hibernate' method gives several benefits: It's a near zero power state; all 'Startup' folder items are already loaded, Windows background services are already 'up', and all open work moves to the hard drive, yielding really fast start-ups.
And if power is lost (storms, etc.) the document or picture you were working on won't be lost like it would be in 'Standby' mode, and the system will resume just where you left it.
For XP (newer OS's are similar):
Go to Start> Control Panel> Power Options> Hibernate: here check the box.
To show this option when turning unit off; Start> Turn Off Computer> HOLD down 'Shift' key & 'Standby' becomes "Hibernate': tick that.
(Some systems have a 'crescent moon' key to go right to hibernate, or set laptops for this operation 'when lid is closed').
To start up, push the power button, and Windows will resume right where you left it, bada bing.
"Turn off" can be done once a week to keep things in order, or as directed from within an application install or update.
· 8 years ago