Brad Wardell's site for talking about the customization of Windows.
Using Windows Defender to control what gets loaded
Published on November 17, 2006 By Frogboy In Help

Windows Vista for me is a must-have upgrade for many different reasons. But some of the reasons it's so compelling are not being trumpeted enough.  Windows Vista includes with it a host of new tools for knowing a lot more about your computer than previously available.

For starters, open control panel:

Under programs look at "Change start up programs".  Under XP there was MS Config but Windows Defender is much nicer about this. Now you can actually control what is getting loaded up on your computer. 

As you can see here, I can now see what loads on start-up. The most common problem normal users run into is that after a period of time, their start up gets clogged full of junk and managing this can be really tedious.  In Vista, that problem goes away thanks to the integration of Windows Defender into Control Panel.  More advanced users will probably want something like TweakVista but as something that you know is there out of the box, this is very handy.

on Nov 17, 2006
I always used 3rd party software to clear out my starup.  I'm glad to see this improved in Vista.

on Nov 17, 2006
In XP I use Mike Lin's Startup proggie to manage what's loading, but the 'startup' feature in Vista very good and a welcome addition to the Windows OS. MS may have attracted a lot of criticism over the Vista delays, but given the improvements between Beta 1 and RC2, they were wise to hold back on the final release and have done very well in creating a feature packed and stable OS.
on Nov 17, 2006
Wow that's great addition!
on Nov 17, 2006
I always use MSCONFIG
on Nov 17, 2006
I use Secure Process Startup manager. I wonder if Stardock is going to drop support for that.
on Nov 20, 2006
It's not advertised as well as Vista does, but the most recent updates to Windows Defender for XP includes the Start Up program manager.
on Nov 21, 2006
I've always used Autoruns from when I needed to sort through my start-up proggies...
on Nov 23, 2006
Just go to Start->Run and type "msconfig.exe". Use the "Startup" tab.
on Nov 23, 2006
Oops. I forgot. If your running Vista just click Start and 'start' typing msconfig. Man, I love Instant Search.