When Windows Won't Shut Down
BY GURU: DAVE SMITH
Q: My Windows 98 is not shutting down. It leaves a message saying Windows is shutting down but then it does not shut down. What is causing this, and how would I fix this problem?
A: This is such a common problem that Microsoft's website has a troubleshooter on the numerous reasons why Windows won't shut down. Idon't have a quick fix for you because the problem could have so many different causes.
Let's start with an overview of the shut-down process. Windows first closes all running applications. Each program must agree to be shut down. Sometimes an ill-behaved program can halt the process. In this case, Windows usually shows a Cannot End Task message and gives the choice to wait or end the task abruptly.
If Windows gets as far as the shut-down screen, it means that all applications have been closed. Windows' next step is to close all the drivers. Any of the hardware drivers (the software that controls the hardware) may have its own shut-down process that gets stuck. Or your anti-virus program might be hanging up in its final virus check.
Even a corrupt graphics file for the shut-down screen (the one that tells you it's OK to shut down your computer) can halt the shut-down process.
Some things to try:
Press Enter when the screen hangs to wake it up.
Disable Fast Shutdown in Windows 98. To do this, click Start, Programs, Accessories, and then System Information. In the Tools menu, choose System Configuration Utility. On the General tab, click Advanced. Choose Disable Fast Shutdown and click OK twice. Restart your computer.
Hold down the Shift key while clicking OK in the shut-down dialog box in Windows 98.
Remove or change the sound event for shutdown (in case that sound file is corrupt). Double-click the Sounds icon in the Control Panel to remove or change sound files.