locked
Vista (SP1) Task Scheduler doesn't work RRS feed

  • Question

  • My scheduled tasks no longer run.  In the Event Viewer, each time I reboot I see:

     

    Task Scheduler service failed to launch tasks triggered by computer startup. Additional Data: Error Value: 2147549183. User Action: restart task scheduler service.

     

    When I start the Task Scheduler admin tool and click on the "Task Scheduler Library" folder, I get a message box that says:

     

    Catastrophic failure (Exception from HRESULT: 0x8000FFFF (E_UNEXPECTED))

     

    When I click OK, admin tool loads but it shows an empty list of tasks.  If I drill down in the tree under the "Task Scheduler Library" folder, I can see the other folders (the ones I've created plus the Microsoft folder).  They're all empty as well.

     

    If I start the Task Scheduler admin tool and drill into the folders without actually clicking on "Task Scheduler Library" then I can actually click on the other folders (e.g. Microsoft/Windows/Shell) and I'll see the tasks listed.  However, they all have a blank "Next Run Time".  If you click on "Task Scheduler Library" then I get that "Catastrophic failure" error and any folders I click on are empty - unless I had clicked on them before getting the "Catastrophic failure".

     

    It looks like several other people have reported both of these symptoms (the event log error and startup and the problems in the admin tool), but I don't see any solutions.  I'd be happy to provide more information if that would help!

     

    Thanks!

    Matt

    Friday, November 7, 2008 3:37 PM

Answers

  • Wow.  To say I'm disappointed with TechNet at this point is the galactic understatement of the century.  There IS a fix for this, but sadly I had to find it somewhere else, totally unrelated to Microsoft.  First off, must give credit where credit is due so here is the link to the author who provided the actual fix:

     

    http://forums.cnet.com/5208-12546_102-0.html?forumID=133&threadID=296660&messageID=2784696

     

    Now for a concise fix here so folks don't have to take the jump and read more gobbledygook that necessary.  The Catastrophic error that you and I and everyone else are seeing is TOTALLY DIFFERENT than the normal corrupt msfeeds update fix so please try that fix if you wish but don't expect positive results.  The cause here is a bad task somewhere else in the chain.  Sadly, there is no easy to way to determine this so you're gonna need to do some hunting and pecking.  Please perform the following steps:

     

    1.  Go to C:\Windows\system32\Tasks and make a backup of all the tasks there somewhere else on your drive.  I copied the whole folder content to my Documents folder.

    2.  Take a quick look and see if there are any rogue tasks there that look like they're old XP leftovers that snuck in somehow during your Vista install and subsequent restore of stuff you used on your old XP box.  The author at the link above found UniBlue's SpeedUpMyPC task caused his problem.  In my case, the cause was a GoogleUpdateTaskUser task that was incompatible with Vista's Task Scheduler.  IF you spot those off the bat easily, just delete it and see if your TS works properly again.  In my case, the deletion of that one simple file fixed me completely.

    3.  If you are not fortunate enough to find a rogue task off the bat, you will have some work ahead of you.  Please delete everything in your Tasks directory (safe since you DO have a backup from step 1) and see if your Task Scheduler starts normally.  It's virtually impossible it won't at that point and if it doesn't, then this technique is not for you and I would put everything back the way it was and continue to work with MS Support.  Provided it does work normally, the work begins.

    4.  Begin adding everything from your Task directory backup into the System32\Tasks directory ONE BY ONE.  Tedious, yes, but the only way you'll find out what's causing problems.  So add each task back in, fire up your scheduler and see if it behaves.  Provided it does, continue adding until you find the broken task.  You may have several so take your time!  Once your done, keep those bad tasks out of that directory and seek fixes from the applicable software provider.

     

    DONE!  You're now fixed.  Sad we had to dig so deep to find such a simple solution, eh?

    Friday, December 5, 2008 3:00 AM

All replies

  • Hi, I have the same problem... and nothin on this issue now in the internet.

     

    Thursday, November 27, 2008 3:21 PM
  •  

    Is ANYONE working on this issue??  I also have the exact same problem.  I'm running Vista Home Premium with SP1 installed and ALL updates are in place per Windows Update (so please don't ask me to check that my laptop has all updates).  I have worked with HP support to see if they have any suggestions and I was referred HERE since this is clearly a Microsoft issue.

     

    PLEASE HELP!!

    Tuesday, December 2, 2008 6:45 PM
  • I've seen several other reports of the problem, but still no fixes.

    Tuesday, December 2, 2008 6:59 PM
  • Wow.  To say I'm disappointed with TechNet at this point is the galactic understatement of the century.  There IS a fix for this, but sadly I had to find it somewhere else, totally unrelated to Microsoft.  First off, must give credit where credit is due so here is the link to the author who provided the actual fix:

     

    http://forums.cnet.com/5208-12546_102-0.html?forumID=133&threadID=296660&messageID=2784696

     

    Now for a concise fix here so folks don't have to take the jump and read more gobbledygook that necessary.  The Catastrophic error that you and I and everyone else are seeing is TOTALLY DIFFERENT than the normal corrupt msfeeds update fix so please try that fix if you wish but don't expect positive results.  The cause here is a bad task somewhere else in the chain.  Sadly, there is no easy to way to determine this so you're gonna need to do some hunting and pecking.  Please perform the following steps:

     

    1.  Go to C:\Windows\system32\Tasks and make a backup of all the tasks there somewhere else on your drive.  I copied the whole folder content to my Documents folder.

    2.  Take a quick look and see if there are any rogue tasks there that look like they're old XP leftovers that snuck in somehow during your Vista install and subsequent restore of stuff you used on your old XP box.  The author at the link above found UniBlue's SpeedUpMyPC task caused his problem.  In my case, the cause was a GoogleUpdateTaskUser task that was incompatible with Vista's Task Scheduler.  IF you spot those off the bat easily, just delete it and see if your TS works properly again.  In my case, the deletion of that one simple file fixed me completely.

    3.  If you are not fortunate enough to find a rogue task off the bat, you will have some work ahead of you.  Please delete everything in your Tasks directory (safe since you DO have a backup from step 1) and see if your Task Scheduler starts normally.  It's virtually impossible it won't at that point and if it doesn't, then this technique is not for you and I would put everything back the way it was and continue to work with MS Support.  Provided it does work normally, the work begins.

    4.  Begin adding everything from your Task directory backup into the System32\Tasks directory ONE BY ONE.  Tedious, yes, but the only way you'll find out what's causing problems.  So add each task back in, fire up your scheduler and see if it behaves.  Provided it does, continue adding until you find the broken task.  You may have several so take your time!  Once your done, keep those bad tasks out of that directory and seek fixes from the applicable software provider.

     

    DONE!  You're now fixed.  Sad we had to dig so deep to find such a simple solution, eh?

    Friday, December 5, 2008 3:00 AM
  • Thanks!  That did it.  The GoogleUpdateTaskUser task was the culprit.  In my case, it was not an XP hold-over.  My workstation has been running Vista since day one.  And the task scheduler was working for a while.  I must have installed something from Google that created this task a few months ago.  (I'm not sure what, maybe something that came bundled with another application?)  In any case, deleting the task cleared up the problem.

     

    Thanks again!  I was just getting ready to rebuild my OS.  This fix saved me a lot of hassle.

    • Proposed as answer by Gareth Horton Thursday, March 15, 2012 11:00 PM
    Friday, December 5, 2008 4:14 PM
  • That definitely did the trick for me...at least it stopped the Catastrophic Error from appearing.  In my case, it was also GoogleUpdater; my best guess is that the task was created when I installed Google Chrome, although I do use Google Talk as well. 

    Now, I no longer get the C.E., buuut I have noticed that my tasks all get disabled.  Or, rather, they do not get disabled, they are still showing as enabled, but there is no "Next Run Time" - it gets blanked out at some point and I have to open up the property page for each task and save it to get it reenabled.  Nothing in the Event Viewer to suggest anything weird, so I'm at a loss.  Has anybody run into this, and does anybody have any ideas?  This behavior has been occurring since before the SP1 install (which I was subjected to 2 weeks ago), so I don't know if it's SP1-related or not.

    Thanks in advance! 
    Monday, December 22, 2008 3:44 PM
  • Thursday, January 19, 2012 10:21 AM