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Group Policy Client service does not start

    Question

  • Hi,

    As soon as I (administrator on my PC) logon to Windows 7, I get a message saying that the Group Policy Client service failed to start. I'm not sure why I'm getting this error even though the dependencies are very much up and running..

    Below is the error message I get in the notification area as soon as I logon

    Failed to connect to a windows service
    Windows could not connect to the Group Policy Client service. This problem prevents stndard users from logging on to the system.
    As an administrative user, you can review the System Event Log for details about why the service didn't respond.

    Saturday, November 10, 2012 9:48 AM

Answers

  • I FOUND SOLUTION TO THIS PROBLEM!

    The crash of your computer caused that - you are absolutely right!

    I had this issue on my laptop since November, and it really bugged me.  I sifted through the event log and found the pattern of events that preceded the issue, and, probably, caused it.

    In short, the pattern is as follows: Windows updates run automatically as scheduled, and when reboot is initiated after the updates are finished, the computer crashes (probably during reboot sequence).  When it boots up, it reports that the last shutdown was unexpected, and the issue begins to occur.

    I spent 2 days trying to dig out a solution from the Internet, to no avail, until I came across this page.  It doesn't say anything about this particular problem, but it gives more information about SVCHOST process that starts many services, including Group Policy Client.  It looks like during reboot a vital registry settings were lost during crash and Group Policy Client "don't know" how to start.  Let me explain:

    There are two places to look in the registry:

    1. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services this path should contain gpsvc key (a folder), which is responsible for service parameters and configuration.  I found that the key was intact, so, you do not touch anything here - just check that the key exists.
    2. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SVCHOST This is the most important path you should look into, as it must contain the keys and values referred in the key #1.  Below are descriptions what must be present there.
    • There must be Multi-String value called GPSvcGroup. My laptop was missing it.  So, you should create multi-string value named GPSvcGroup and assign it value GPSvc.
    • Next, you must create a key (a folder) and name it GPSvcGroup - this key normally should be there, but, again, it was missin on my laptop.
    • Then open newly-created GPSvcGroup folder and create 2 DWORD values:
    1. First called AuthenticationCapabilities and you must give it a value of 0x00003020 (or 12320 in decimal)
    2. Second is called CoInitializeSecurityParam and it must have value of 1.

    Once you complete all steps above, reboot the computer and the problem will be fixed.

    Video walkthrough for those who are not very technical is here: http://youtu.be/4m5KEmckWK4

    I am so relieved I was able to fix it, and hope this will help others with the similar issue.

    Sunday, February 17, 2013 6:29 PM
  • Hello,

    Please goto:

    Event Viewer > Applications and Services Logs\Microsoft\Windows\GroupPolicy

    I think there might be a CSE (Client Side Extension) that causes GPSVC to crash.

    If you get the GUID of the CSE, I can show you how to re-register the CSE.


    MVP Group Policy - Mythen, Insiderinfos und Troubleshooting zum Thema GPOs: Let's go, use GPO!

    Saturday, November 10, 2012 12:30 PM

All replies

  • Hello,

    Please goto:

    Event Viewer > Applications and Services Logs\Microsoft\Windows\GroupPolicy

    I think there might be a CSE (Client Side Extension) that causes GPSVC to crash.

    If you get the GUID of the CSE, I can show you how to re-register the CSE.


    MVP Group Policy - Mythen, Insiderinfos und Troubleshooting zum Thema GPOs: Let's go, use GPO!

    Saturday, November 10, 2012 12:30 PM
  • Hi,

    Usually the issue is caused by some third-party service. Have you checked Event viewer for other error messages logged related this? And disable all the 3rd party services to test which service was causing this failure.

    Regards,
    Cicely

    Monday, November 12, 2012 7:43 AM
    Moderator
  • I FOUND SOLUTION TO THIS PROBLEM!

    The crash of your computer caused that - you are absolutely right!

    I had this issue on my laptop since November, and it really bugged me.  I sifted through the event log and found the pattern of events that preceded the issue, and, probably, caused it.

    In short, the pattern is as follows: Windows updates run automatically as scheduled, and when reboot is initiated after the updates are finished, the computer crashes (probably during reboot sequence).  When it boots up, it reports that the last shutdown was unexpected, and the issue begins to occur.

    I spent 2 days trying to dig out a solution from the Internet, to no avail, until I came across this page.  It doesn't say anything about this particular problem, but it gives more information about SVCHOST process that starts many services, including Group Policy Client.  It looks like during reboot a vital registry settings were lost during crash and Group Policy Client "don't know" how to start.  Let me explain:

    There are two places to look in the registry:

    1. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services this path should contain gpsvc key (a folder), which is responsible for service parameters and configuration.  I found that the key was intact, so, you do not touch anything here - just check that the key exists.
    2. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SVCHOST This is the most important path you should look into, as it must contain the keys and values referred in the key #1.  Below are descriptions what must be present there.
    • There must be Multi-String value called GPSvcGroup. My laptop was missing it.  So, you should create multi-string value named GPSvcGroup and assign it value GPSvc.
    • Next, you must create a key (a folder) and name it GPSvcGroup - this key normally should be there, but, again, it was missin on my laptop.
    • Then open newly-created GPSvcGroup folder and create 2 DWORD values:
    1. First called AuthenticationCapabilities and you must give it a value of 0x00003020 (or 12320 in decimal)
    2. Second is called CoInitializeSecurityParam and it must have value of 1.

    Once you complete all steps above, reboot the computer and the problem will be fixed.

    Video walkthrough for those who are not very technical is here: http://youtu.be/4m5KEmckWK4

    I am so relieved I was able to fix it, and hope this will help others with the similar issue.

    Sunday, February 17, 2013 6:29 PM
  • Thank you SQL-ER. I created an account just to come say thank you. Worked like charm! Only thing I had to do is use the decimal value for some reason in the AuthenticationCapabilities DWORD value. ! Thanks a mill!
    Thursday, March 14, 2013 7:54 PM
  • Thanks for your comment, Beylie.  One can use hex or decimal value - they mean the same numbers anyway.  It is important to indicate which format - hex or decimal - you enter in registry editor.  If you select hex you type 3020, and if decimal - 12320, but not the other way around.  I actually highlighted this in the video I referenced in my original post.

    Anyway, glad it helped.

    Friday, March 15, 2013 4:49 AM
  • Confirmed that these steps will resolve this issue. Upvote for you!

    Best regards,

    Trent B
    Partner Online Technical Community
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    Tuesday, April 09, 2013 3:22 PM
  • Worked on the first try. THANKS.
    Monday, July 15, 2013 3:57 PM
  • SQL-ER, Many thanks, this issue has been part of a host of problems due to that crash, relieved to have an answer for this part.

    It also caused Windows Mobile Device Centre to see two PC's ---  So PC and PC02 and no end of failed syncs with Outlook and Phone.

    Thanks again.

    Saturday, July 27, 2013 7:33 AM
  • Thanks! You are a hero, saved me a rebuild on my laptop.
    Monday, August 26, 2013 10:51 AM
  • Thank you! Works great!!!
    Tuesday, September 24, 2013 1:29 PM
  • Thanks. It was very useful post.
    Monday, September 30, 2013 1:34 PM
  • Hi SQL-Er

    I bought a new machine, 4th Gen, Windows 8 and Intel i5.

    I am installing Windows Server 2008 R2 in my machine for my training.

    After Installation, I have restarted my machine and some times I get black background where the system shows the Error msg (Failed to connect to a Windows Service - Windows could not connect to the Group Policy Client Service. This Problem prevents limited Users from logging to the system).

    I have tried the above setting and followed the steps as mentioned above and restarted the machine.

    Still I am getting the same Error with Black ground.

    Pls help. TQ.

    Regards,

    Rajesh.

    Tuesday, December 03, 2013 3:43 PM
  • You are a saint and a god among men.  The registry entries fixed it for me!
    Thursday, February 06, 2014 7:23 PM