You know there are hidden programs running in the background on your computer but you can’t see them. There is no icon in the task bar showing that they are running so where are they?
The more programs you have running on your computer at the same time, hidden or not, the more likely it is that your computer will have problems running to its optimum standards. There are the programs that start when you simply start your computer and there are programs that you started but now can’t see or re-open as it is in fact open already. These hidden programs running in the background can really add up and slow your computer down.
There is no doubt that turning off some of these hidden programs can significantly increase your computer’s performance and reliability.
Open The Windows Task Manager
One way to see if there are programs running in the background is to open the task manager on your computer. When using most Windows operating systems you only need to hit CTRL ALT DEL on the keyboard to open task manager.
After task manager opens you will see various tabs to choose from. In this case the processes tab and the applications tab might help you find hidden programs running in the background on your computer. It is not easy though, as the some small programs show as processes and others as full applications.
As you can see from the screenshot below, on the Processes tab we can see that Google Chrome and Adobe Reader are open but some processes are not so obvious.
If you go to the Applications tab you will see a list of the programs running. Between these two tabs, you should be able to find what you are looking for. Did you notice that Adobe reader is running in the processes menu but not the applications menu. It is a process running in the background.
Find Hidden Programs Running In The Background – MSCONFIG
Have you ever heard of disabling startup programs as a way to speed up your computer? These are the true hidden programs running in the background on your computer. Some of these programs don’t need to be running in the background and can cause your computer to run slower than usual.
For example in the screenshot below I can see that Nero (a program I rarely use) is starting up with two items that I obviously don’t need everyday. Also allowing something like Shareaza (a file sharing program) to startup is a computer security risk that should not be taken.
How to disable programs from starting when you log into your computer?
- Once you have the system configuration window open, go to the startup tab.
- Here you will see a list of programs that will start when your computer starts. Simply un-tick the ones you don’t want.This will disable programs from starting.
- When you have finished choosing your programs, press apply and then OK.
The programs you see in the system configuration utility depend greatly on what operating system you are running and on what programs you have installed.