Windows XP won’t log off

Another small support issue I got involved in today was an issue with a Windows XP workstation not logging off. Typically nothing would happen when you selected shutdown, log off or restart.

The prevailing opinion on the support forums is a rogue process preventing shutdown and this was the case here.

Despite the machine not running installations at the time nor was it installing any updates¬†there was an msiexec.exe process in the task list. After I killed the process I was able to log off again and upon logging back in Adobe’s updater, and a few other applications with their own auto updaters, all sprung into life requesting updates.

The fix process then – launch task manger > click on the processes tab > click on the msiexec.exe process and click on end process. Log off, back on and off again.


Senior consultant and company director at The Full Circle. Passionate about automation scripting, end user experience and cloud technology.