How to Stop Programs Running in the Background Windows 11: A Guide

Sometimes, your Windows 11 computer might be slower than usual because too many programs are running in the background. Stopping these programs can help speed things up. To do this, you can use the Task Manager, Settings, and Startup settings. Follow these steps to regain control over your computer’s performance.

Step-by-Step Tutorial on How to Stop Programs Running in the Background Windows 11

Want to make your Windows 11 computer run faster? Here are the steps to stop unnecessary programs from running in the background.

Step 1: Open Task Manager

Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.

Task Manager is like the control center for your computer. It shows which programs and processes are running. You’ll need this tool to identify and stop background programs.

Step 2: Go to the Processes Tab

Click on the “Processes” tab in Task Manager.

The Processes tab gives you a list of all the running applications and background processes. Look for programs you don’t need to run all the time.

Step 3: End Unnecessary Processes

Right-click on an unnecessary process and select “End Task.”

Ending a task stops the program from running until you restart it. Be careful not to stop essential system processes.

Step 4: Open Settings

Press Win + I to open the Settings menu.

The Settings menu allows you to control many aspects of your computer. You can stop background apps from running here.

Step 5: Go to Apps and Features

Select “Apps” and then “Apps & features.”

This section lists all installed apps on your computer. You’ll use this to manage background apps.

Step 6: Manage Background Apps

Click on “Background apps” and toggle off unnecessary apps.

Turning off background apps stops them from running automatically. This can free up system resources and improve performance.

Step 7: Adjust Startup Apps

Go back to Settings and select “Startup.”

Startup apps run as soon as you boot up your computer. Managing these can also help improve your computer’s speed.

Step 8: Disable Startup Programs

Toggle off unnecessary startup programs.

Disabling these programs will prevent them from running automatically when your computer starts, giving you a speedier boot-up time.

After completing these steps, you’ll notice that your computer runs faster and more smoothly. Background programs that you don’t need will no longer consume system resources, making your Windows 11 PC more efficient.

Tips on How to Stop Programs Running in the Background Windows 11

  • Monitor Regularly: Check the Task Manager regularly to see if new background processes have appeared.
  • Update System: Keep your Windows 11 updated to ensure you have the latest performance improvements.
  • Uninstall Unnecessary Software: Get rid of programs you no longer use to prevent them from running in the background.
  • Use Built-in Tools: Utilize Windows security tools to check for any unnecessary background activities.
  • Backup Before Disabling: Always backup your data before making significant changes to your system.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are background apps?

Background apps are programs that run even when you’re not using them. They can perform tasks like updating and sending notifications.

Can stopping background apps improve performance?

Yes, it can. Stopping unnecessary background apps can free up system resources, making your computer run faster.

Which background processes should I not stop?

Avoid stopping essential system processes like “explorer.exe” and “svchost.exe” as they are crucial for Windows to function properly.

How do I know which apps are safe to disable at startup?

Generally, you can disable non-essential software like Spotify, Adobe Reader, or any third-party applications that don’t affect system performance.

Will this affect my notifications?

Disabling some background apps might affect notifications. Make sure to only disable apps you don’t need to stay updated in real-time.


  1. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on the “Processes” tab.
  3. Right-click and select “End Task.”
  4. Press Win + I to open Settings.
  5. Select “Apps” and then “Apps & features.”
  6. Click on “Background apps” and toggle off unnecessary apps.
  7. Go back to Settings and select “Startup.”
  8. Toggle off unnecessary startup programs.


And there you have it! You now know how to stop programs running in the background Windows 11. By following these steps, you’ll free up some much-needed system resources, making your computer run faster and more efficiently. Remember, managing your background apps and startup programs isn’t a one-time thing. Make it a habit to check them regularly.

For further reading, you can explore more about optimizing Windows 11 settings and improving overall system performance. And don’t forget, the world of tech is constantly changing. So, stay updated with new tips and tricks to keep your computer running at its best. If you found this guide helpful, share it with your friends so they can speed up their computers too!

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