Windows 10 cleaning on startup

Sometimes, after booting up a PC or laptop, you may find that it has started updating itself or is cleaning Windows 10 on startup. By scanning your computer for unnecessary files and deleting them, this process can help speed up your system. At the same time, it improves the overall performance of your PC.

If your computer gets caught up in a perpetual cleaning cycle, this article will explain the problem and offer some troubleshooting tips.

What is Windows 10 Startup Cleanup?

Windows 10 cleaning

Depending on the setting, “clean” a computer could mean many things. In your search for a solution to the clutter on your computer, you may have come across the advice of other users recommending various methods. Keep everything “clean” and organized within files, storage areas, and other system components is essential for optimal performance. You can get there in several ways.

Wiping your computer’s digital components yourself is a good practice to get into, but you may not know that your device already handles a good deal of this, automatically. You can schedule this to happen at predetermined times every day or every month, or your computer can start these processes after undergoing significant system maintenance. The reasons behind this will be discussed in more detail later in the text.

A computer needs to be cleaned in much the same way as cleaning a house or residence. In general, things work best when they are clean and tidy. The greater the disorganization in your computer system, the greater the risk of errors, slowness and other problems.

From time to time, your computer will let you know that an operating system update is available by displaying a notification in the small box to the left of the taskbar. The Windows Update utility is used to update the operating system with new features and fixes to the installed framework and programs.

As a result, it is possible to meet “cumulative updates”, which have many individual upgrades bundled together. They could solve specific problems, expand functionality, increase efficiency, and more. This cumulative aesthetic debuted with Windows 10, but was later made available on older builds of the Microsoft operating system.

If you start Windows Update and let it run its course, a number of things will happen:

  • After informing you that a large update is about to be performed, the system will ask whether or not you have active apps on your desktop. Typically, you should save any unsaved work and exit all running apps before allowing the system update.
  • During the update process, Windows Update will let you know that it will be busy for some time and will probably inform you that it will need to restart many times. It will automatically restart the system in these situations and tell you not to touch anything.
  • After Windows Update has finished installing all of its components, a message will appear stating that it is preparing the computer for use.
  • Later, you may receive a message asking you to wait until cleaning is complete before turning off the machine.

It is common for your computer to do some cleaning as part of booting and for minor updates to skip warning you not to shut it down until the process is complete. If you see this warning, your system has recently undergone a major update.

Larger updates increase the likelihood that your system will generate a large number of unnecessary files or perhaps leave traces of previously used data. If you get a cleaning alert after running Windows Update, it means that the utility is trying to find and delete unused or unnecessary files.

In a nutshell, it involves eliminating the elements that no longer contribute to the system and organizing everything so that it works more smoothly.

What are the ways to recover if Windows 10 Clean Up stuck on startup?

After several hours of waiting, you have no choice but to shut down your system if Windows gets bogged down in the disk cleanup prompt. Some professionals, however, recommend waiting a day before turning off the machine. During an update, shutting down the system may cause instability and file corruption.

Assuming you are lucky, Windows will continue to update normally. The system will typically pick a decent state from the past and boot from it. There are, however, several methods you could try if Windows doesn’t start up smoothly. These are the most important:

Instant Startup Repair

You can use the Windows troubleshooter at the click of a button using the system’s built-in Auto Startup Repair feature. Press the restart button (or the power button, if there isn’t one), then press F8 as your system boots. The computer can be turned off and on again by selecting the appropriate options from the Start menu.

In case that doesn’t fix the trick, go to the Windows Settings menu and from there select Update & Security. You can access the recovery and restart now button from that menu. Choose Troubleshoot and then Startup Repair in the Advanced Startup Options box that appears when you start your machine.

By following these procedures, the system will automatically detect any problems and fix them so that you can log in as usual.

System recovery

By pressing the power button, Windows will shut down immediately. It will bypass the standard boot process and allow access to the advanced settings panel. Here is the procedure:

Where the Windows logo appears, you should press the power switch to turn off the computer. To access the menu with other startup settings, repeat the above steps (normally, two to four efforts are required). If the machine does not boot past the Windows logo, you will need to insert the Windows installation disc into one of the available USB ports.

Immediately after powering on, the Windows Setup pane will appear. After adjusting the time, inputs, and keyboard, click Repair your computer, then troubleshoot in the next box. This will provide a labeled submenu “Advanced startup options.”

Using the menu for “Advanced options,” you could start “Safe Mode” and then install any necessary updates. If you boot in safe mode, only essential Windows components will load and the disk cleanup application will not run, so you can safely install updates.

Also, in Safe Mode, there will be no glitches, corrupted data or other issues that plagued the update.

Frequent questions


What does it mean when Windows 10 says cleanup?

If you see the “Cleaning up” notification, it means that the Disk Cleanup software is trying to delete some of the unused data, such as temporary files, offline data, obsolete Windows files, update records, and so on. Times on the order of several hours are realistic for the entire operation.

How can I stop cleaning Windows 10?

To enable or disable the feature, select the Run Desktop Cleanup Wizard every 60 days checkbox in the Desktop Items panel. Let it finish cleaning if it has already started.

How long does Microsoft cleanup take?

Updates typically take less than 15 minutes to install, and the worst-case scenario takes longer. However, this depends on factors such as your computer hardware, the quality of your Internet service, the nature of the update, and so on.

What is cleaning up not turning off the computer?

If you see this warning, it usually indicates that an update has been applied successfully or that the system is removing unused files. This process takes time and it is important that you are aware that it is not stuck or ready to be shut down completely before proceeding.

Final notes

It is possible to get lost in your computer’s maze of notifications. Others may try to linger for what seems like an eternity, forcing you to look at the exact screen every time you look at your computer.

The “Windows 10 Clean Up on Startup” alert is an example. You don’t have to waste time deleting junk files manually.

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