A particularly common issue that Windows users run into is that the PC does not shut down when you select the shutdown option but restarts instead.
While this looks to be an error caused by the operating system, it sometimes hints at larger issues that users and administrators may be unaware of.
Here is what happens usually. When you select shutdown using the Start menu, the Ctrl-Alt-Del menu, or other means, Windows runs the shutdown command but restarts the PC instead of executing the shutdown command.
While this can be a hiccup and resolved when you select shutdown the next time, the issue may also persist so that users use other means such as cutting the power connection to turn off the computer.
One common cause for the restart instead of shut down issue is a crash. Windows is configured to automatically restart when the system crashes and that includes crashes that happen after you activate the shutdown option.
The configuration leads to an endless loop of shutdown commands and reboots provided that the crash happens on every shut down of the system. It is thankfully pretty easy to disable the option.
While that won't take care of the issue that caused the crash in first place -- you should investigate it using the Event Viewer or other means -- it ensures that Windows shuts down if you select the shutdown option.
Here is how you disable the automatic restart when the system crashes.
Windows should shut down after you made the change if the shutdown issue was caused by a crash.
The feature is enabled by default on Windows 8 and newer versions of Windows; while it works just fine most of the time, it may also cause issues such as issues with dual-boot systems or with mouse and keyboard not working properly.
Disabling Fast Startup sometimes resolves shutdown and restart related issues on Windows machines.
Note that system startup is slowed down when you disable the option. It may resolve your shutdown issues on the other hand.
Now You: Have you experience shutdown issues before on Windows?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.