How to Add a Program to Startup in Windows 10

Welcome to this article that will guide you on how to add a program to startup in Windows 10. Adding a program to startup is a convenient way to launch your frequently-used applications as soon as your computer boots up. This can save you time and effort in accessing your favorite programs. Here are the 12 easy steps to guide you in adding a program to startup in Windows 10:

Step-by-Step Guide

Step 1: Open the Startup Folder

The first step is to open the Startup folder in Windows. You can do this by pressing the Windows key + R on your keyboard, typing “shell:startup” in the Run dialog box, and pressing Enter.

Step 2: Open the Program’s Location

Next, you need to open the location of the program you want to add to Startup. You can do this by right-clicking the program’s shortcut or .exe file, and then selecting “Open file location”.

Step 3: Create a Shortcut

Once you have accessed the program’s folder, right-click the program’s shortcut or .exe file, hover on “Send to”, and then select “Desktop (create shortcut)”.

Step 4: Copy Shortcut to Startup Folder

After creating a shortcut, simply copy it by selecting it, then right-clicking and clicking “Copy”. Go back to the Startup folder, right-click on any empty space, and select “Paste”.

Step 5: Rename the Shortcut (Optional)

You may rename the shortcut to any name that you prefer by right-clicking on the shortcut, selecting “Rename”, and typing the new name.

Step 6: Open Task Manager

Press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys on your keyboard to open the Task Manager, or right-click the Start menu and select “Task Manager”.

Step 7: Go to the Startup Tab in Task Manager

In the Task Manager, click on the “Startup” tab to see the list of programs that start with your computer.

Step 8: Enable the Program to Start Automatically

Locate the program you want to add to Startup and click on it to select it. Then, click the “Enable” button at the bottom-right corner of the Task Manager window.

Step 9: Check if the Program is Added to Startup

To check if the program has been added successfully, reboot your computer and see if the program launches automatically. Alternatively, you can return to the Startup folder, and verify if the shortcut you created is still there.

Step 10: Modify Startup Settings (Optional)

You can modify the startup settings by right-clicking the program in the Task Manager, and selecting “Properties”. From there, you can choose to enable or disable the program from starting automatically, or to change the startup type.

Step 11: Remove a Program from Startup

If you want to remove a program from Startup, simply go to the Task Manager, select the program, and click the “Disable” button.

Step 12: Repeat for Other Programs

You can repeat the steps above to add as many programs as you want to Startup in Windows 10.

Apart from the above steps, here are some tips and tricks to help you optimize the process of adding programs to startup:

Tips and Tricks

Tip 1: Use Programs with Low System Impact

Add only programs that have a low impact on system resources and minimize the number of programs added to Startup as it can slow down your computer’s boot time.

Tip 2: Remove Unnecessary Programs from Startup

Remove unnecessary programs from Startup to improve computer performance and boot time.

Tip 3: Use Windows Task Scheduler

You can also use the Windows Task Scheduler to add programs to startup, especially those that require admin privileges to run.

Tip 4: Use Third-Party Software

You can use third-party software like CCleaner or Autoruns to manage Startup programs in Windows 10.

Tip 5: Be Careful with Third-Party Software

Be cautious when using third-party software to manage Startup programs as they could incorrectly remove essential startup programs that are required for your computer to function properly.

Tip 6: Keep Your Computer Updated

Keep your computer updated with the latest Windows updates and security patches to ensure optimum performance and prevent issues with Startup programs.

Tip 7: Use a Reliable Antivirus Program

Use a trusted antivirus program to scan your computer and remove any malware that could modify your Startup programs.

Tip 8: Conclusion

Adding programs to Startup on Windows 10 is a convenient way to save time and access frequently-used programs faster. By following the above steps, you can easily add any program of your choice to Startup with ease.

Tip 9: Keep Learning

Keep learning about Windows 10 to discover more tips, tricks, and shortcuts that can improve your computing experience.

Tip 10: Practice

Practice adding programs to Startup in Windows 10 to master the process and improve your troubleshooting skills.

That’s all! We hope that this article has been helpful to you in adding programs to Startup in Windows 10.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Adding a Program to Startup in Windows 10

Adding a program to startup on your Windows 10 operating system has its advantages and disadvantages. Below are the ten advantages and ten disadvantages of this action:


  1. Convenient – programs that run automatically reduces the steps it takes to open software on a computer.
  2. Efficient – programs that run on startup are ready to use once a user logs in.
  3. Time-saving – when programs open up on their own, it saves the user from having to look for an application and open it manually.
  4. Productivity – once the system starts, the software is immediately launched, and you can start working right away.
  5. Avoids data loss – the automatic startup of some programs prevents the user from forgetting to save their work before shutting down.
  6. Seamless updates – some programs have an option to automatically update themselves once the computer is turned on.
  7. Multi-tasking – Having various programs run on startup will enable a user to switch tasks quickly and efficiently.
  8. Competitive advantage – you can gain a competitive edge if you rely on automatic startup versus other manual means.
  9. Automated – with automatic launch, the computer will always start with the necessary programs in place.
  10. Free-up Resources – by automating the launch of some programs, it frees up RAM when the software has already launched.


  1. Slow Start – sometimes too many programs launching can result in a sluggish startup and slow to use the computer.
  2. Unwanted programs launching – inadvertently installing programs that will launch by default the next time you start the computer can be a nuisance.
  3. Security risks – automatic programs launching may increase vulnerability to security threats on some devices.
  4. Resource-intensive – too many programs starting may slow down the computer by using up too much memory and disk space.
  5. Lengthen boot time – more programs starting will result in longer boot times, which can be frustrating for users.
  6. Update conflicts – some updates can counteract each other, causing conflicts, and in some instances, the program may stop working altogether.
  7. Time-consuming – selecting which programs to launch by default can be a time-consuming task.
  8. Hidden resource users – some programs, run automatically at startup, can consume resources without the user being aware of it, which can cause slowdowns.
  9. Organization – having an over-cluttered startup can cause confusion, which may lead to a disorganized system.
  10. Dependency – if a piece of software installed by means of automatic start does not work, then the user has to diagnose and resolve the issue themselves.

In conclusion, there are benefits of adding programs to startup on Windows 10. However, the user needs to understand the potential drawbacks and whether it aligns with their requirements before automating the software startup process.


1. What is the startup folder in Windows 10?

The startup folder in Windows 10 is a location where any program or shortcut can be placed, which will then launch automatically when the user logs into their account.

2. How do I access the startup folder?

You can access the startup folder by simply typing “shell:startup” in the Run dialog box, which can be accessed by pressing the Windows key + R.

3. Can I add any program to the startup folder?

Yes, you can add any program or shortcut to the startup folder as long as it does not require administrative privileges to run.

4. What if I want to add a program that requires administrative privileges?

In that case, you will need to create a scheduled task to launch the program with administrative privileges at startup. This can be done using the Task Scheduler in Windows 10.

5. How do I create a new shortcut?

To create a new shortcut, right-click on the desktop or any other folder and select New -> Shortcut. Then, enter the location of the program you want to add to the startup folder and give it a name.

6. Can I add multiple programs to the startup folder?

Yes, you can add as many programs or shortcuts as you want to the startup folder but keep in mind that adding too many programs may slow down your system’s startup time.

7. Can I add a program to the startup folder for all users?

Yes, you can add a program to the startup folder for all users by placing the shortcut in the “C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\StartUp” folder.

8. What if I don’t want a program to start up automatically anymore?

If you no longer want a program to start up automatically, you can simply remove its shortcut from the startup folder.

9. Can I disable all startup programs at once?

Yes, you can disable all startup programs at once by using the Task Manager. Simply right-click on the taskbar and select Task Manager, then click on the Startup tab and disable any programs you don’t want to start up automatically.

10. What if I want to delay the startup of a program?

You can delay the startup of a program by adding it to the Task Scheduler and setting a delay time for the task to start.

11. Can I add a script to the startup folder?

Yes, you can add a script or batch file to the startup folder just like any other program or shortcut.

12. Can I add a URL to the startup folder?

Yes, you can add a URL to the startup folder by creating a shortcut to the browser and adding the URL as the target.

13. What if a program doesn’t start up correctly when added to the startup folder?

If a program doesn’t start up correctly when added to the startup folder, you can try running it with administrative privileges or creating a scheduled task for it instead.


In conclusion, adding a program to startup on Windows 10 is an easy task that can significantly improve your productivity. Whether you want to have your favorite music player open automatically when you start your computer in the morning or have an important work application ready to go, this feature is an excellent way to streamline your workflow. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can add any program to startup and have it launch automatically every time you start your computer.


Thank you for taking the time to read this article on how to add a program to startup on Windows 10. We hope that the step-by-step guide provided here has been helpful for you and that you feel confident in adding programs to your startup folder. Remember, having your most-used programs automatically start when you turn on your computer can save you time and streamline your workflow. Good luck, and happy computing!