Startup may take longer than usual and you may receive an "At least one of services failed to start" error message

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Article ID: 839091 - View products that this article applies to.
Important This article contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and edit the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
256986 Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry
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SYMPTOMS

In Microsoft Windows Server 2003, startup may take longer than usual and you may receive the following error message:
At least one of services or driver failed during system startup. Use Event Viewer to examine the event log for details.
Note If Microsoft Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS) has any pending jobs, BITS will be set to automatically start at startup, and you may notice this behavior.

CAUSE

This behavior occurs because of a race condition. In Windows Server 2003, BITS depends on the EventSystem service. Therefore, if BITS starts before the EventSystem service starts, BITS tries to start the EventSystem service and then waits until the EventSystem service starts. However, even after the timeout period (typically, 80 seconds), if the EventSystem service does not start, the Service Control Manager (SCM) causes BITS to timeout and then adds a message in the event log. Then, you receive the "At least one of services failed to start" error message in the SCM that is mentioned in the "Symptoms" section. After you receive this error message, the EventSystem service may start, and BITS may enter the "Running" state. Because of this behavior, startup may take longer (typically, two minutes more) than usual.

RESOLUTION

To resolve this behavior, add the EventSystem service to the list of dependencies for BITS. If you add the EventSystem service to the list of dependencies for BITS, BITS will start only after the EventSystem service starts. To use the Service Control utility (Sc.exe) to add the EventSystem service to the list of dependencies for BITS, follow these steps:
  1. Log on to your computer as an administrator.
  2. Click Start, and then click Run. The Run dialog box appears.
  3. In the Open box, type cmd, and then click OK.
  4. At the command prompt, run the following command:
    sc config bits depend= rpcss/eventsystem
    Note By default, in Windows Server 2003, the list of dependencies for BITS includes the RpcSs service. Therefore, when you run this command, you must specify "rpcss" as an OptionValue parameter for the depend OptionName parameter.
  5. To verify the contents of the list of dependencies for BITS, run the following command at the command prompt:
    sc qc bits
    Note This command will display the service settings for BITS. The list of dependencies is one of the service settings.
For more information about the changes that Sc.exe makes to your Windows registry if you run the command that is mentioned in step 4, see the "" subsection of the "More Information" section.

STATUS

This behavior is by design. This behavior does occur in Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1).

MORE INFORMATION

BITS

BITS is a service that asynchronously transfers files between a client and an HTTP server. BITS transfers files in the background.

Changes that Sc.exe makes to the Windows registry

To add the EventSystem service to the list of dependencies for BITS, run the following command at the command prompt:
sc config bits depend= rpcss/eventsystem
When you run this command, Sc.exe changes the value of the following REG_MULT_SZ type registry entry:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\BITS\DependOnService
The new value of this registry entry is as follows:
rpcss
Eventsystem
Warning If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

If you use Registry Editor to make these changes to your Windows registry, type one dependent service on each line in the Value data box of the Edit Multi-String dialog box.

Note If you use Registry Editor to make these changes, you must restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

REFERENCES

For additional information, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
818746 Background Intelligent Transfer Service in Windows Server 2003 white paper
331716 List of known issues for Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS)
For more information, visit the following Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) Web sites:
Background Intelligent Transfer Service
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa362827.aspx

Service Control Manager
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms685150.aspx

Service Control Utility
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms691621.aspx

Properties

Article ID: 839091 - Last Review: January 23, 2007 - Revision: 4.1
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition (32-bit x86)
Keywords: 
kbscm kberrmsg kbserviceprocess kbservice kbprb KB839091

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