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Forcing a Power off command when logging off

We're using NT4 workstations connected to our network. A lot of our users when logging off at the end of the day, lose patience having to wait for the PC to shut down completely and simply turn off the PC, potentially damaging their local/roaming profile, resulting the synchronisation errors on starting up between the local and roaming profile.

Does anyone know of a way that we can get the PC to power off on its own after the user has logged off, so that the user doesn't have to wait around to turn the PC off manually? A logging out script perhaps.

We're slowly rolling out XP workstations which are a dream to work with as the users simply press the power off button which in turn logs the user out, shuts the PC down and powers off.

Advice greatly appreciated.



Retired Mod
Political User
Doing A Start->Turn Off Computer->Shutdown will. The user is automaticlly properly logged off, then the computer proceeds to shut itself down

Thanks for the advice. Unfortunately, we don't appear to have a 'Turn off computer' option on the users workstations. Is the 'turn off computer' option something to do with power management?



It looks like your APM/ACPI isn't enabled. I don't know how to enable it, so someone else will help you out with this, unless you know how to do that. I believe that option can be found under BIOS and Device Manager.


Retired Mod
Political User
It should be there on ANY PC regardless of APM/ACPI. It just would not automatically shut off (it would display a "It is safe to power down" message). The server operators are probably security freaks and disabled it from within the domain's Group Policy or something, Check that.

Thanks for the advice, I'll look into that. Perhaps I mistaken, but I always thought the 'Turn off computer' option was only available when working on a Laptop.


If God Created Man From Monkeys And Apes, Why Are There Still Monkeys And Apes?? (G.Carlin)


He is using NT 4.0 which does not auto shutdown..it brings you to a prompt which has a button to restart and gives you a message that it is safe to shutdown...as in win95 times.


Retired Mod
Political User
Ah OK. I assumed because it is a Windows XP site that you were talking about Windows XP workstations. I don't know much about NT 4, so i have no idea.

Sorry, I didn't know where else to ask. I use XP at home and at work and this site is one of the best resources I've come across on the net.



I don't know if this will work with NT4, since I do not have a NT4 box to test it on. It runs fine with XP. I find it quite handy & keep the icons right on my desktop (per the included screenshot).


> Place the shutdown.exe file in your c:\ drive
> Either of the 2 shortcuts are preconfigured to run it.

You can adjust the time before action is taken by editing the target line in the shortcut & changing the 0 to what ever # (which is in seconds) you like.

Let me know if it help you at all. Oh, by the way here is a great place to find answers to your NT4/2000 questions.

Alternatively, you could use a program like Remote Administrator & tell the users not to shutdown the machines at all. This way you can do it remotely.
Thanks for the help Ron, unfortunately, the Shutdown utility doesn't actually power off the PC, just restarts the PC. It's a shame as that's a pretty good utility. It's possible that the problem is with the Compaq Deskpro EN series PCs rather than anything to do with Windows.

Thanks for the NT4/2000 link, that's a damn useful site.

Unfortunately, it's not feasible to take control of the PCs and shut them down as 1) we have over 1200 PCs on the network and 2) shutting down doesn't power off the PCs, just restarts them.

We're migrating to XP over the next few years, upgrading most of the PCs to Compaq Evo PCs, so hopefully won't have to put up with the various NT4 compatibility problems (no USB support, etc.)


Originally posted by Steely
unfortunately, the Shutdown utility doesn't actually power off the PC, just restarts the PC.
Both shortcuts restarted the pc? Either way, maybe give this a shot (please backup your registry first):

Key: Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon
Name: PowerdownAfterShutdown
Type: REG_SZ
Value: 1 Enable power off after shutdown

After this, the shutdown dialog should be Shutdown and Power Off. You may have to reboot in order for the registry changes to be saved.

*If you make the registry change and the PC reboots instead of powering down, you can often get it to work by upgrading your hal.dll with the Softex dll which shipped with SP4 (or later).

cd %systemroot%\system32
ren hal.dll hal.dll.original
copy cd_drive\i386\hal.dll.softex hal.dll

Also, check the ACPI settings in the BIOS, & the Power settings (Display Properties > Screensaver > Power).

Let me know if it works.

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