Please wait for the System Event Notfication Service…

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

One of the most annoying things is a server which is hung up and won’t allow you to access it remotely. Especially, if it requires driving to get to the server.

Such was the case of a trouble call from a user trying to access a server. He would try remote desktop and received the following message:

Please wait for the System Event Notification Service…

The login process would remain at this point.

Remote Reboot failed but the system would ping and I could mount a hidden drive.

I needed remote desktop to work so I could look into this problem.

The System Event Notification Service as described from an article in the Microsoft Developer Network states:

Applications designed for use by mobile users require a unique set of connectivity functions and notifications. In the past these individual applications were required to implement these features internally. The System Event Notification Service (SENS) now provides these capabilities in the operating system, creating a uniform connectivity and notification interface for applications. Using SENS developers can determine connection bandwidth and latency information from within their application and optimize the application’s operation based on those conditions.

It sounds like something that is not needed, but it wasn’t the time to make this call when there was an annoyed user waiting for the server. I suspected we could at least kill the process and see if Remote Desktop would work again. Time to use the useful SC command:

sc \\servername queryex SENS

This returned:

SERVICE_NAME: sens
TYPE               : 20  WIN32_SHARE_PROCESS
STATE              : 4  RUNNING
(STOPPABLE, NOT_PAUSABLE, IGNORES_SHUTDOWN)
WIN32_EXIT_CODE    : 0  (0x0)
SERVICE_EXIT_CODE  : 0  (0x0)
CHECKPOINT         : 0x0
WAIT_HINT          : 0x0
PID                : 976
FLAGS              :

Using the PID; I could attempt a taskkill of the sens process.

taskkill /S <servername> /PID 976 /F

This made the login session continue and I had access to the server.

Checking the Net; there are a several situations which could cause this condition.  It ranged from removing Live Messenger (which was not installed), registry changes (which didn’t work or didn’t apply) to removing an update (which was not installed).

I had to log out and found the error was back.  I used the same taskkill steps and was able to access the server again.

Not seeing the obvious; I figured I would try the “fix most things Microsoft” solution and rebooted.

The error went away.

Sometimes a reboot is all that is needed.

 

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