When a computer starts up and boots into Windows, there are a bundle of other programs that load up with it. Some of them are needed, but others are unnecessary and do little more than slow down a computer.
When I am told that a computer is running slow, the first thing I do is look in the locations that call these programs to load, and I cull the programs that are not necessary. There are numerous locations (registry, startup folders and win.ini) where these programs are called from, so the process can take quite a while.
Startup Manager is a free utility that shows you each of these locations in a single, easy to use interface. Just check out the screenshot of it. This is certainly a no nonsense program.
Startup Manager shows you what is going to be loaded at startup. All you need to do is untick the items that you no longer want to be part of your daily life.
The startup programs should probably be checked every 6 or so months to keep your computer running lean. The list can expand very quickly, often without the users knowledge. Using this utility can save a lot of time. It is one of those useful programs to keep on a USB disk, so that you can load it up quickly in the case a friend is in need.
Get your copy of Startup Manager for free from StartupManager.org.