This topic was prompted by a problem that one of our clients was facing. He ran into a problem trying to get his computer to shut down: He was running Windows XP Professional and it absolutely refused to shut down. Every time he tried to shut down it could go through the motions, but when it got to the point to turn off the machine, the BIOS screen could come up and the machine reboots. Annoying; well let’s look at the causes before we tell you what worked for our Client. There are three basic sources of automatic reboot problems: Recovery settings Software incompatibilities, including driver issues BIOS problems Recovery Settings One of the things that is quite different about Windows XP compared to Windows 9x (9x is shorthand for Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows Me in all their various versions), is that one can control how it responds to certain critical errors—those that cause the infamous Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). In Windows XP, the default setting is for the computer to reboot automatically when a fatal error occurs. If that fatal error only occurs when you’re shutting down, the system reboots automatically. If you haven’t changed any of the system failure settings, you should be able to see the error by looking in the Event Log. But a better long-term solution is to turn off the automatic reboot so you can actually see the error when it happens—chances are it will tell you enough about itself to let you troubleshoot further. To change the recovery settings to disable automatic rebooting: Right-click […]