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Community Newsletter: Q&A forum: 3/17/06 Why won't my computer shut down?

by: Marc Bennett March 15, 2006 1:20 PM PST

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3/17/06 Why won't my computer shut down?

by Marc Bennett ModeratorCNET staff - 3/15/06 1:20 PM


Hello. When I try to shut down or restart my desktop via the standard buttons on the start menu, my computer goes through what appears like the normal shutdown or restart routine, but it never actually powers off or restarts. The screen goes dark and then the monitor even goes into power-save mode since it's getting no signal from the computer, but the computer fans, lights, everything else remain on. I have to hold down the power button to turn it off or hit the reset button to restart. What is causing this and how can I fix it? I'm using Windows MCE. Thanks.

Submitted by: Scott G.

(WARNING: This weeks answer and some recommendations suggest that you edit settings in your BIOS. If you are at all uncomfortable or unfamiliar with this task, please let someone who is experienced perform it. You dont want to end up worse off than before! Thank you.)



This is quite a simple solution. The behavior of your power button is controlled by a setting in the Control Panel power configuration. Simply navigate to the Control Panel through Start/Settings/Control Panel, then click the Power Configuration button. Click the tab labeled Advanced and go to the drop-down menu, where it says, "When I press the power button on my computer:" and select "shutdown".

An alternate way to get to the same settings is to click Start, then run and enter "powercfg.cpl" (without the quotes). This will pull up the same dialog box. If it is already set to shutdown then you may need to change a setting in the system BIOS.

While the computer is booting up, you should see a line telling you to press some button for setup. On most computers its F1, on some its Delete, on some others its Escape...just watch for it during bootup. Once you are in the BIOS you'll need to navigate around a little to find the power settings. They will usually be in the main screen, but sometimes they aren't. The setting you want to change is going to be something along the lines of how long you have to hold down the power button before the computer shuts down. Its usually defaulted to 4 seconds; just change the value to something like 2 or 3 seconds. While this setting is most likely not the problem, it is good to know where they are for future reference.

Submitted by: Chris S.

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