There are many good autostart managers available for Windows XP/2003. The most comprehensive one is, probably, Sysinternals Autoruns (now Microsoft). Runalyzer from Spybot Search & Destroy, however, offers an interesting feature that is quite useful if you're afraid of having spyware on your PC that make use of rootkit technology: You can autostart programs on Windows installations using attached hard disks.

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So, if there is spyware installed on your machine hiding from the OS during runtime, you can boot from another device and use Runalyzer to search for malware. It automatically detects Windows installations on all connected devices. Since it also supports Windows PE, you could boot from a CD and use Runalyzer to analyze your hard disk.

RunAlyzer It is also possible to disable autostart programs this way. Runalyzer lists Windows services, but you can't disable them. If you don't want a service starting whenever the system boots up, you have to delete it.

Runalyzer marks suspicious autostart programs as red. You can compare your system with their online database. This way, you'll get the latest information about autostart malware.

Another nice feature of Runalyzer is that you can export your system setting as text file. This is useful when you want to consult an expert.

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Runalyzer is still beta software (version 0.6). During my test I didn't encounter any problems, though.


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