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Eliminating abandoned Windows login sessions

Note: I cannot guarantee that any of the links to Microsoft documents which appear in the following article will continue to work, only that they worked when this article was written. Microsoft's documentation pages appear to move around entirely at the whims of madmen, and a link that works today may result in a 404 error tomorrow. Now you know what your favorite search engine is for.

The setup: why are these machines so slooooow?

I was recently asked to determine why a group of machines at work were running slowly. The machines in question exist in a shared environment and are used by multiple individuals throughout the course of a given day. There were a few things causing them to malfunction, but one of the more interesting issues I found was that the users were not logging off when they were finished with the machines; instead, they would walk away and the next person would simply hit "Switch User" to log into them. Therefore multiple disconnected user sessions remained in memory, many with programs still running -- and collectively, these abandoned sessions served as an anchor which weighed down the performance of the machines.

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