Alexander Conroy

Manually Remove Disabled / Unchecked MSConfig Program Items

It took a while to find this one. After accidentally installing a virus and cleaning it manually, I wanted to clean up the registry entries in MSConfig to not show the now defunct startup .dll’s and .exe’s

The way to do this is quite simple actually. There are 3 locations in your registry where the information is held.

The first two are:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run

When you click on the folders you will find the names of the programs. Delete them and they are gone from MSConfig (Note: This does not actually delete the file). Make sure you browse too and delete the offending files before deleting them from the registry. Check both the Local Machine and Current User because they can have separate or duplicate entries. You also want to make sure one program doesnt reinstall another after rebooting thinking you had fixed the issue!

The third location is:

  • HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Shared Tools\MSConfig

Here you will find two folders: /startupfolder/ and /startupreg/

Startupfolder will have full path folders of items that startup with the “/”‘s trimmed as “^”. You can find information on the programs by clicking the folder and viewing the contents. Delete the folder if you want it out of the MSConfig list.

Startupreg has more descriptive startup items. You can clearly see the names you would normally see in MSConfig.

Once you delete the files from these locations, give your computer a restart and you should no longer have them showing / loading.

These 3 Registry keys/folders are very handy for manually removing viruses, especially those “ANti Virus” Viruses. The ones that make it seem as if they are an anti virus.

You MUST make sure to remove every file associated with them…they will try to hide. Be vigilant and careful. Once manually removed it is recommended ot always followup with antimalware/spyware software such asSpybot Search and DestroyMalwarebytes Anti-Malware, and a general Anti-Virus.