Windows 10 startup times could get cut with this new feature

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Windows 10 is making a change to the way programs get added to the list of apps that run when the system first boots up, letting users see when applications are being added to the startup list during installation – and giving folks the chance to stop this happening at the time.

As you may be aware, the current situation is that when you install an application, at some point after that, you might notice that your PC is starting up a little more slowly. Then when you visit the Startup screen (in Settings > Apps, or alternatively it’s present in Task Manager), you’ll see that the app in question has added itself to this list of programs which automatically run when your computer first starts.

Obviously, this isn’t an ideal situation, particularly for less tech-savvy users, who may never even realize what’s happened. The more apps on this list, the longer bootup can take, particularly if the apps in question are demanding pieces of software.

The good news is that with the latest preview build of Windows 10 for the update due to land in the first half of 2021, Microsoft is changing things so that programs will now notify the user that they’ve added themselves to the roster of startup apps.

Delivering greater clarity

As Windows Latest reports, in an undocumented change, testers for the 21H1 update are now seeing a ‘startup app notification’ which pops up to let the user know that the program being installed is configured to run at boot time.

If you don’t want that to happen, you can click on the notification there and then, which brings up the Startup apps list, allowing you to turn off the app in question to prevent it from running automatically on first boot.

You may, of course, want a program to run automatically like this, and obviously if that’s the case, you can leave it enabled.

This is a minor change, but definitely a useful one in terms of greater transparency and making sure your PC doesn’t get bogged down when it first loads up Windows 10 (and all the programs that automatically fire up with the OS).

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).