Table of Contents Overview Costs of boot and logon delaysDefining the problem
This article describes Microsoft Support experiences in troubleshooting boot and logon delays. The goal of this content is to create awareness among IT administrators, support professionals, and consultants, about the tools, cause, and resolutions for boot
and user logon delays. Related topics include:
Tools for Troubleshooting Slow Boots, Slow Logons :
Root Causes of Slow Boots, Slow Logons :
Windows 7 Boot Process :
Written by: A. Conner, David Everett, and Joey Seifert
Edited by: Justin Hall
A team in Commercial Technical Support, dubbed the “SBSL” team for slow boot slow logon,” recently studied boot and user logon delays on domain-joined Windows clients and servers.
The team reviewed several hundred cases to identify:
What the team found was:
In many of the cases, there were multiple code defects or misconfigurations contributing to boot and logon delays. This made the troubleshooting process iterative, where resolving the most obvious delay exposed subsequent
To understand the impact of boot and logon delays, consider the following example:
The 1-year cost for those two delays grows significantly with organization size, as illustrated in the following table. Opportunity costs could be even higher if delays exist in other operations like desktop lock and unlock,
user logoff or OS shutdown, or if users log onto multiple computers over the course of a work day.
To get administrators and support professionals on the same page, a common criteria was needed to describe the delays taking place.
When troubleshooting a slow boot or logon problem, we recommend you use a clock or stopwatch (such as a stopwatch application on your phone) to record the number of seconds for different phases of the boot and logon process to
There are four scenarios of interest to time:
If slow boot:
Message strings displayed during OS boot
# of seconds delays
<Message String 1>
<Message String 2>
<Message String 3>
<Message String 4>
<Message String 5>
<Message String 6>
Slow Logon – 1st time logon
Slow user logons are frequently impacted by the background loading of OS components within a number of seconds, and in extreme cases hours, after OS startup. Compare 1st logon times immediately after OS restart against 1st time logons for an identically
configured user account when background OS startup has completed on the console or RDP server you are logging onto.
1st time logons are delayed by the execution of Active Setup and the need to build user profiles derived from default user profiles.
Logon # of seconds following OS startup
Logon # of seconds after background OS startup complete
Logon # of seconds with cached credentials
Slow Logon – 2nd time logon
Subsequent or “2nd time” logons are normally faster than first-time logons due to the use of a locally cached user profile, unless policy has been configured to delete such profiles after user logoff, or N # of days after the profile was created, or
mandatory profiles have been assigned, in which case every logon is like a first-time logon, deriving a new profile from a default profile.