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 DNS Service "Starting" but never "Started"  

There's a problem on some Servers (Windows 2000 Server or Windows 2000 Professional) whereas the Domain Name Service will not complete it's startup. When checking in the Services you'll notice that the DNS Service says "starting" but never finishes starting up.


There was a strange problem, as described above, where my DNS Service would never finish "Starting". At the time the only way I found to solve this problem was to set the service to manual startup, then after I booted the system and logged in I would go in to the system services and start the DNS service manually. When I did this the DNS Manager software (DeEnesse) and the DNS Server would work fine.

This was a very inconvenient problem and it was further compounded when the Server started rebooting all on it's own (a totally unrelated problem). If the system rebooted when I wasn't around the DNS Service would never start (because it was on manual start-up) and all the DNS queries ended up going to the Secondary DNS for a response.... not good.

It turns out that the DNS Service startup problem is related to other services not completing startup first. In most cases it doesn't matter, but with DNS it wants the Netlogon Service to completely finish loading before it starts.

Anyway to make a long story a bit shorter I found a solution to the DNS Server not starting up when set to automatic, here's how you do it...

The Solution:

You have to make the DNS Service wait until Netlogon finishes loading. In order to make one service wait for another you have to edit the registry. Warning, editing the registry is at your own risk and not recommended unless you're sure you know what you are doing.

Here we go... Click on Start, Run, then type in regedit and press enter (be careful in here). This starts up the registry editor. Go to the following location in the registry (also shown in the picture below)...


registry image 1

Then scroll down the services list and find DomainNameService (this name is added to the services by DeEnesse).

What you want to do now is add a registration key as shown by the arrows in the picture below. To do this highlight DomainNameService then on the menu at the top click Edit and choose New String Value. Name the new string value DependOnService (the word is foreshortened in the picture below).

registry image 2

Once you've created the new string value DependOnService double click it and enter the "Value data" as shown below... Your registry entry should now look like the picture above.

registry image 3

Click OK and exit your Registry Editor. If you have the DNS Service set to manual startup remember to go in and change it to automatic. Now reboot your system.

Your DomainNameService will now wait until the Netlogon Service finishes starting up before it starts. This should solve the "Starting" but never "Started" problem.