Slow Startup [Resolved]

Hi everyone -

I am using Comodo and Defense+ for the first time after many years with Norton. I have version 3 ( What I’ve seen so far is wonderful. Even the forums are great.

Once my machine is up, everything other than Outlook still runs plenty fast, but the installation of Comodo seems to have drastically slowed down my bootup time. From a total bootup time of no more than 20 seconds or so, I now sit and look at the XP welcome screen for a full half-minute (used to be like 3 seconds), then probably another minute or more looking at the desktop while everything else starts up. Are there any gotchas I should look for, or anything else I can do to help things along?

Actually, at the moment, I have Defense+ disabled.

Windows XP SP2, McAfee is my AV (it starts pretty quick)

Thanks so much,

Greetings and welcome to the forums,

Can I ask you what kind of McAfee you’re using, if it has a firewall you need to disable this one for sure. Running more firewalls at one time gives problems. Also, did you use the Norton Removal Tool ? If not, you can download it here.
Do you have any other security software running ?

Keep me informed


HI Xan -

Thanks for responding. The McAfee is an Antivirus, not a firewall. It’s McAfee VirusScan Enterprise 8.5.0i, site-licensed from my office. I’m installing on a brand new clean hard drive, no traces of Norton. That’s the only safe way. No other security software. Windows Firewall is turned off.

I disabled the automatic startup of Comodo and then McAfee and it helped somewhat. Still have that long wait starting at the Welcome screen, before any application programs start, which I’ve never had before.

Thanks again,

First : are you using vista ? if so please take a look at this thread.
2nd : try re-enabling both, then set Comodo firewall + defense to learning mode and reboot.

See if 1 of the 2 solve the problem


The poster is using XP. I use Comodo and my boot ups are very quick. When is the last time you defragged? Also you can defragg your boot files. I use TuneXP.

I was wrong indeed, but you to, look at this

I'm installing on a brand new clean hard drive, no traces of Norton. That's the only safe way. No other security software. Windows Firewall is turned off.
So it needs to be something that conflicts, anyway let's wait after the learning boot-up before we go further.


McAfee VirusScan Enterprise 8.5.0i appears to have some firewall functionality and also some “HIPS” functions. To quote from the website:
“By blending advanced anti-virus, firewall, and intrusion prevention technologies, VirusScan Enterprise covers a broad range of threats.”

I used to use Enterprise 8.5.0i in a previous job and I remember I could not use it with CFP. I tried allowing all the viruscan files in defense+ but this did not help. Perhaps there is something that could be changed in the McAfee settings to smooth things over but I dunno what they are without having a copy to play with. Have you tried contacting McAfee support? CFP is not listed as incompatible so maybe their support could give you the answer you need:

Thanks for your input.

Right you are, I had not noticed that. But the only problem is very slow bootup and shutdown. Once the machine gets going, both Comodo and McAfee work fine.

I only used McAfee because it’s free from my employer, and that’s what we use there. All I wanted was just a plain old antivirus. I was looking for one to use instead, and discovered that Comodo has one. Maybe it would play nicer with the firewall? But it sounds like it has the same problem: it contains some aspects of HIPS and Firewall functionality. So I may not be any better off.

I haven’t had a chance to try setting both to training mode and rebooting. I will do that when I get home tonight.


Well if you need a free av then switch to Avast. Better detection rate then Mcafee anyways.

Thanks. You think Avast is better than Comodo? How about the other free ones (AVG, PC Tools, Avira, etc. etc.)? “Home Edition” makes me a little nervous.


The best for the moment is Avira Antivir :), it’s better than avast :).

McAfee is bad anyway, so it’s better to change.

btw : I thought you told me that it didn’t have a firewall >:(, just joking ;D


Remember Avira bugs you to upgrade and doesn’t include a web shield or real time spyware. All of those are covered by Avast.

I put both Firewall and Defense+ into training mode and rebooted a few times. The long (30-second) welcome screen seems to have gone away, but the few apps I have starting at bootup are still taking inordinately long to launch, over an entire minute or two, much longer than they did before Comodo was installed. I’m open to suggestions.

I really haven’t settled on an antivirus yet, in switching from Norton (I had SystemWorks and Personal Firewall for years). I would like to pick up something for free, at least until I know it works satisfactorily.

Doesn’t it make sense that Comodo’s antivirus/antispyware etc. would be more compatible with the same company’s Firewall than anything else?

I’d really like to nail down what’s causing this slow bootup before I go switching, since that’s just guessing. The problem may have nothing to do with the McAfee. I’ll keep experimenting as time permits.


The best way to try and narrow a problem down like this is by doing a diagnostic start up. Go to Start and click on run. Type in the run box “msconfig”. Click on the general tab and select diagnostic start up.Reboot. Re enable each item one by one. Start with Comodo. Then so and so forth. When you notice your slow start then whatever item you just enabled is causing your issue. I run XP Home SP3 on both my machines. They both have Comodo and NOD32. I get no slow downs or slow boot ups. I also defrag once a week. Did you try that tool I sent you a link to. The Tune XP. It greatly improves your start up.

Yep… I also suggest Going through your startup.


Thanks everyone for responding. Sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner. Real life interferes with my experimenting.

For some reason I’ve never had much luck with msconfig. I tried to set it to diagnostic startup and got a funky error message about the logged-on user not having sufficient rights to change one or more services, despite the fact that I am an administrator. Then when I rebooted it completely froze when Windows was starting. A “last known good configuration” got me out of that.

Where and how were you suggesting that I “disable” and “re-enable” startup applications? I am pretty comfortable at manipulating the registry entries that determine what programs start automatically, and I really don’t have that much, maybe 4 programs.

I have another way to accomplish the same thing. I periodically re-install everything from scratch on a new hard drive, which is what I’m doing now. And I do backups of the entire os partition with each step. That gives me the option of cleanly “backing out” however many steps I want. I’ve found that’s the only way to be sure all the ■■■■ gets eliminated.

So I really don’t see the point of tuning and defragging; this is a fresh install of Windows on a brand-new hard drive.

The problem almost has to be Comodo and McAfee fighting. The only other programs starting up are tray display things for my video adapter and sound card, and I’ve had those for years with no problems.

I will recover to the fresh Windows and install Comodo next (I installed McAfee first last time), and see what that does. If bootup is fast, I’ll probably give Avast a try … unless someone recommends Comodo Antivirus.


New install of Windows or not you still need to defrag. If you bring up msconfig you can go over to the start up tab and disable your items there. Defragging your boot files and your hard drive in general is something you should do on a regular basis.

Funny, but this has always resulted in slower boot-up/overall speed on my pc’s. Used several programs, but none worked out :-\


Thanks. I’ll run the analyzer when I get home, but that seems counter-intuitive to me. I believe that fragmenting is something that happens over a period of time as files are deleted. If I’ve just freshly installed Windows on a fresh hard drive, all files are new and no files have been deleted. So there should be no fragmentation.

This web page says it better than I could:

When you add a file or a new program to a brand new computer, the hard disk is relatively empty so new data is written to the hard disk in one contiguous block. When you need to use that information, the computer can quickly access it because it is all in one place.

As you use your computer adding files and programs, the hard disk begins to fill up. Deleting files or removing programs creates small empty areas among the other data that the computer will reuse. After awhile, the computer is no longer saving information in large blocks. Instead, it stores information in the many little empty nooks and crannies of your hard disk. The result is that one program or file is broken up, or fragmented, into little pieces and stored in many different areas of the hard disk. … the more broken up the information is, the longer it takes to access the data and the slower the computer becomes.

I am only trying to help. You have nothing to loose by doing a simple 20 minute defrag.