Slow bootup times have always plagued many Windows computers, and it can often be tricky to figure out what causes it. Often times, it's as simple as a hard drive going bad. When hard drives start to wear out, the operating system can have difficulty reading all of the sectors on it. If it happens to come across bad sectors during the bootup process, it will have to repeatedly attempt to read that sector until it finally works. This can extend the time it takes to boot the PC up by several minutes.
Matt wants to create restore discs for his computer. Leo says that's always a good idea, so that he can restore back to the factory configuration before he starts diagnosing. Making one on a USB key is a great option. He can also buy recovery discs from the manufacturer if he'd rather not do it. Leo recommends the Ultimate Boot CD and HiRen (or HBCD). Both should be free. It has some great utilities.
Cindy is having trouble booting up Windows from a USB key. Leo says that Windows 8 has a secure boot feature that won't let users boot to a USB key unless they go into the BIOS and set it up to do so. If Cindy has, she can try reversing the settings and then remove the key. It should go back to it's original settings.