Are you wondering what happens when your computer shuts down and after it restarts? Many things happen within that period, and thankfully, Windows helps track the entire process and keeps a record in the system log.

With the built-in Windows Event Viewer, you can monitor the activities that occur on your computer before, during, and after it shuts down or restarts. In this article, we’ll teach you how to do that, but first, what is the Event Viewer?

What Is the Windows Event Viewer?

The Event Viewer keeps a record of application and system messages on a Windows 10 PC. The program logs every action taken while working on a computer. That said, if many users operate a computer, you can use the Event Viewer to monitor each user’s activities while running the device.

Also, it helps users discover errors, information messages, and warnings on their PCs. What’s more, you can’t alter, stop, or disable the activities of the Event Viewer altogether because it’s a core Windows service.

You can start to troubleshoot any issue on a Windows computer from the Event Viewer in many cases. However, as a rule of thumb, you don’t need to panic even if there are alarming messages or warnings in the system log. Unfortunately, some fraudsters take advantage of messages in the Event Viewer to scare and defraud people. They can manipulate it to display error messages and warnings even if your computer is working correctly.

Without much ado, let’s show you how to track what happens when your computer shuts down or starts, using the Windows Event Viewer or the Command Prompt.

There are many identified events related to shutting down and restarting a Windows 10 PC. However, we will show you the most common four in this article, and they include the following:

  • Event ID 41: It shows that your Windows computer rebooted without shutting down completely.
  • Event ID 1074: Your computer records this event when an application forces your laptop to shut down or restart. This event also helps you know when a user restarted or shut down the computer from the Start menu or by using CTRL+ALT+DEL.
  • Event ID 6006: You will this event recorded if your Windows computer shuts down correctly.
  • Event ID 6008: At times when your computer shuts down abnormally or unexpectedly, you will see this event in your system log.

How to See PC Startup and Shutdown History in Windows 10?

You can quickly figure out the events on your computer after shutting down or restarting using the Windows Event Viewer. You can also access some of the events using the Command Prompt, as we will show you below.

Generally, there are two methods to check the events related to shutdown or restart on your computer.

1) View Shutdown and Restart Log from Event Viewer

Follow the steps below to view shutdown and restart activities using Event Viewer:

  1. Press the Windows logo + R keys to invoke the Run dialog
  2. Type “eventvwr.msc” (no quotes) and hit Enter.
  3. The Event Viewer windows will open. After that, navigate to Windows Logs > System on the left pane.
  4. Click on Filter Current Log on the right.
  5. Type “41,1074,6006,6008” (no quotes) into the textbox under Includes/Excludes Event IDs, and then click OK to filter the event log.
  6. After completing all the steps, Windows Event Viewer will display only activities related to the shutdown.

Important Note:

From Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, the OS can automatically reopen apps that were running before your computer shut down or restarted. This information is handy for Windows users who upgraded their OS to the recent release.

You can avoid this issue by doing the following:

  • Adding a unique Shut Down context menu to the Desktop to restore the classic behavior
  • Seeing the last shutdown time, using Command Prompt

Wondering how to check the shutdown time using Windows’ Command Prompt? Let’s show you how in the next paragraphs:

2) View Shutdown and Restart Log Using Command Prompt

If the first method is not convenient for you, you can use Windows Command Prompt to check the system log by following the steps below:

  1. Press the Windows logo + R keys to open the run dialog, and then type “cmd” (no quotes) to open Command Prompt.
  2. Copy and paste the code below in the Command Prompt window, and press Enter:

wevtutil qe system “/q:*[System [(EventID=1074)]]” /rd:true /f:text /c:1

  1. If what you want instead is to view only the timestamp of the last shutdown, copy and paste the code below and then press Enter:

wevtutil qe system “/q:*[System [(EventID=1074)]]” /rd:true /f:text /c:1 | findstr /i “date”

That’s all!

You can use the Command Prompt to view shutdown and startup log on Windows 10. However, we recommend using the Event Viewer, mainly because it’s simple and straightforward. Moreover, you don’t have to copy-paste codes, which fraudsters can take advantage of to hack into your computer.

Are You Unable to View Restart and Shutdown Log on Your Windows 10 PC?

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Also, BoostSpeed helps to enhance your computer’s speed and performance by tweaking non-optimal system settings. The software modifies Internet connection settings to ensure seamless browsing, quicker downloads, and better audio/video call quality.

How to See the Shutdown Log in Windows 11

If you are using Windows 11, viewing the startup and shutdown log is also a walk in the park. This guide will explain exactly how to go about it:

  1. Go to the search bar and type in “command”(without quotes).
  2. Right-click on the Command Prompt result that appears.
  3. Select Yes in the User Account Control confirmation prompt box.
  4. When the Command Prompt opens, type in the following command and then press Enter:

wevtutilqe system “/q:*[System [(EventID=1074)]]” /rd:true /f:text /c:1

  1. This should help you access the data you want. However, if you only want to view the date and time of these events, then execute the command below:

wevtutilqe system “/q:*[System [(EventID=1074)]]” /rd:true /f:text /c:1 | findstr /i “date”

On a Final Note

If you cannot view startup and shutdown events on your computer using the methods we have shared with you, please leave more details with us. We’ll love you also to leave a comment and share our post on your social media. For more tips about Windows 10 related issues, you can visit our blog.