Fix: Windows 8 / 7 will not shut down

When you click on the Windows shutdown button, you find that your Windows will not shutdown It may go as far as the teal colored screen, where it displays “Shutting Down … “ and then remain there. In other words, your Windows 7 or Windows 8 may during shut down, freeze or the activity circle on the screen may continue to move.

windows shutdown icon Fix: Windows 8 / 7 will not shut down

Windows 8 / 7 does not shutdown

Here are a few valid reasons that may be prolonging or preventing a Windows shut down.

1. If yours is a new Windows install, maybe “OOBE” is taking its time. Tis is especially true in the earlier versions of Windows. In the initial days, when you try to restart or shut down a Windows-based computer, the system may take a long time to restart or to shut down.

Alternatively or additionally, you may receive a message that resembles the following: Windows is configuring updates. This usually occurs 1-2 days after you first start Windows – or sometimes after a Windows Update. The problem occurs because the system has to perform maintenance functions, to delete unnecessary files. Typically, this process will occur one or two days after the Out Of Box Experience (OOBE) Wizard runs. When this problem occurs, it may take as long as 10-20 minutes to shut the system down. The process occurs only one time. So just wait for the process to finish once.

2. If you’ve updated your Windows, maybe the Updates are taking a little longer than expected time to configure or install. Best to let the system take its own sweet time, as it only a temporary situation.

3. Have you set Windows to delete Page (Swap) file at every shut down? If so then this process will take some time. You may use this Microsoft Fix It to enable or disable deletion of the Page File. In this case you will have to make Windows stop deleting the Page File at every shut down. While on the subject, this post on how to Disable, delete, recreate paging file in Windows may also interest you.

Windows will not shut down

But if you think that the problem is something else and is a recurring one, then here are the possible reasons :

  1. One of your processes or services is not shutting down.
  2. You have a faulty or incompatible device driver installed.
  3. You have a faulty or incompatible program running.

Here are a few suggestions which you may consider, not necessarily in the order mentioned, that will help you troubleshoot the problem:

1. Undo any recent changes which you may have made to your system. You may have to uninstall a recently installed program or an upgrade or an update or a hardware with device drivers.

2. Try a Last Known Good Configuration or a System Restore.

3. Use the Task Manager to manually try and identify the probable cause or causes for this. Manually stop and quit the suspect program, and then shut down to see if the issue is being resolved. You may have to repeat the procedure with several running processes.

4. Enter Safe Mode. From the Menu, move the cursor down to: Enable Boot Logging and hit Enter.

ntbtlog Fix: Windows 8 / 7 will not shut down

On reboot, search for ntbtlog.txt file in C:\Windows folder. Look for any signs of problems loading device drivers. If you find problems, go into Device Manager and disable the device or uninstall the program. Reboot. If the problem does not occur then you know it was that device or program causing problems.

6. Perform a Clean Boot to troubleshoot the problem. This may help you identify offending third-party processes.

5. Upgrade the Computer’s CMOS/BIOS. Faulty CMOS and BIOS settings can cause startup and shutdown problems.

6. If you have a computer that is running Windows 7. When the system is under heavy load, you may encounter a problem where Windows 7 stops or the keyboard responding when you shut down the computer or put the computer into Sleep. This problem frequently occurs on computers that have multiple processors or that have a processor with multiple cores. In this case apply hotfix from KB977307.

7. Enable Verbose Status Messages. This will help you identify, at which point Windows stops the shutting down process.

8. Enable the Shutdown Event Tracker in Windows 7 | 8 so as to be able to analyze your system shutdown process.

9. Run Performance Troubleshooter and see if it helps you. Type the following in Run box and hit Enter to open it.

%systemroot%\system32\msdt.exe -id PerformanceDiagnostic

10. View the Event Logs using the built-in Event Viewer or our freeware Windows Event Viewer Plus to do so easily. Maybe you will find something in the Event Logs.

11. If you are running Windows 8, disable Hybrid Shutdown and see if it helps.

12. Reset BootExecute registry value and see it this will solve your shutdown problems.

Hope something helps!

Post ported from WinVistaClub, updated and posted here.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Anand Khanse aka HappyAndyK is an end-user Windows enthusiast, a Microsoft MVP in Windows, since 2006, and the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com. Please create a System Restore Point before trying out any software & be careful about any third-party offers while installing freeware. Add me on Google+.
  • gogopogo

    Windows 7 was not shutting down for me – to fix this I just disabled USB selective suspend setting as follows:
    Control Panel
    Hardware
    Power Options
    Change plan settings
    Change advanced power settings
    USB settings
    USB selective suspend setting
    Enabled -> Disabled
    OK

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    Thanks for posting this. I am sure this could prove to be useful to someone, some day. :)

  • William McKay

    I also noticed a problem after changing the power setting from the default to increase the time to not shut off the display that I could not shut down the system. It would hang on the clean screen before the shutting down message appears. After about a week of nailing down the issue and several re-installed images as soon as I changed the power plan the system would hang.
    BTW I invested in a new Win8.1pro full version install that in a new drive and had the same issue after I changed the power settings. I went back to the version 7 and discovered this problem.
    I will investigate the USB setting to see if that will allow me to change from the default values.
    MS there really is an issue with this on a few computers. I’m using a Fujitsu S762 w/16gb.
    Hope this helps others.

  • William McKay

    I tried the suggestion

    USB settings
    USB selective suspend setting
    Enabled -> Disabled

    and it worked for me. I was able to adjust my powser setting.
    Thanks for the tip gogopogo

  • Kostas Paraskevopoulos

    Thanks gogopogo, your suggestion worked like a charm!!!

  • pionu

    Thanks gogopogo !!! Worked perfectly. I’ve been trying all day … multiple things … and now worked. Thanks again

  • Joseph Stateson

    This also worked for me, not sure what caused the problem but THANKS!!

  • scootertrashtx

    Logitech SetPoint has been a real problem for me… It took me forever to figure it out. I did a fresh install Windows 7 64 bit and then installed one driver at a time until I had the delay. Uninstalled, reinstalled to duplicate the problem. I tried multiple versions of the program but even the latest, 5.62, had the same issue. I couldn’t isolate which part of the program was causing the delay so I simply uninstalled it. Problem solved. Hope this helps someone…

  • Alex

    Shutting down by pressing hard shut down button can be a problem for my laptop? I just tried to do these settings and i still have the same problem! I don’t hear my hard-disk but the led is still on.

  • Morgan

    Your advice is a little hard to follow, you should leave a trail of cookie crumbs to keep my sugar level up :)

  • Grant

    my computer will not shut down or restart normally! it shows a notice “Operations are in progress, please wait.The machine will be turned off automatically after operations are complete” I have left this for up to 24 hours. I then turned it off with the power button:

  • http://www.thewindowsclub.com Anand Khanse

    Have you followed any or all of the suggestions give in the post? :)

  • Grant

    yes I tried many different things. in the end I deleted a pogrom that I had recently installed ( acronis ). that seemed to fix that problem. now the hard drive will not start automatically & windows excell is behaving strangely!

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