Like all other pieces of technology, a computer also suffers from various issues from time to time which are very hard to attribute to one single cause. There are so many components embedded inside a machine that it is very hard to predict what can go wrong at any given time, and even when something does go wrong, it is very difficult to find the exact cause. People who are clued up about the workings of a computer and people who are professional computer repairmen follow a fixed and orderly method of checking problems, since this is the only way to ascertain the actual issue.
One of the most annoying things that can happen to a computer is that it simply refuses to shut down. This is a problem that Windows XP users, more than anyone else, have faced over the years and this ultimately leads to simply turning the power source off which can result in loss of data and other issues. If you find that your computer restarts itself after shutdown then you need to take the situation very seriously, since the underlying cause of the problem can inevitably lead to more serious problems as well. People who do not know much about the workings of a computer may not be able to do much about this problem, but the causes mentioned here can be investigated by someone who is not completely ignorant about such things.
Causes of Automatic Restart
Common causes of computers restarting by themselves are computer viruses, computer overheating, computer hardware defects, computer hardware incompatibility and computer driver problems. All of these issues have their own specific solutions that must be applied in order to fix the problem. You should install an antivirus software or update the existing one, you should use the computer in a cool room and avoid keeping it on for days at a stretch, fix or replace any defective hardware peripherals and reinstall device drivers respectively. Hopefully, each of these solutions will solve your problem, but if you still see that your computer keeps rebooting itself, then you need to visit a computer technician immediately.
Solutions to Automatic Restart
In some computers, the settings make the computer restart automatically when it is shutdown. These settings can be altered in the following manner.
- Right click on My Computer and then click on Properties.
- Click on the tab that says Advanced and then click on the Settings button under the Startup and Recovery option.
- Under System Failure uncheck the box next to Automatically Restart.
After doing this, your computer will not restart automatically upon shutdown unless there is some serious defect inside. All Windows based machines have this option checked by default, so that the computer restarts and does not lose any data in case there is some kind of ‘Stop Error’ while it is functioning.
Some more possible solutions to try out are as follows. Please note that none of these solutions are guaranteed to work for you, but there is no harm in trying them out, since there is no way to determine the exact nature of the problem without physically inspecting the machine.
- You should visit the BIOS of the machine when it is booting up, and then look for programs or devices that cause the machine to startup automatically. In order to reach the BIOS you will have to press one of F1, F2, F10, DELETE or ESC when the machine is starting up, and it will specify which key you need to press. You should look for an option called Wake up on shutdown in the BIOS and then disable it.
- You should attempt cleaning up your Windows registry. In order to achieve this you need to go the Start menu, then click on Run, then type regedit and press Enter, then delete entries from the various options that open. These options are HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT, HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, HKEY_CURRENT_USER and HKEY_USERS and HKEY_CURRENT CONFIG. Doing so will also speeden your machine up, and hopefully it will also solve your problem of ‘computer restarts when shutdown’.
This problem is not a very uncommon one, and there are many people who regularly complain about the same. Following some fixed solutions should fix the issue in most cases, but if the trouble persists, then it is probably best to take the machine to a computer repair store and show it to a certified technician. This may take more time and money, but ultimately it will be worth it.