SMS Agent Host Fails To Start

SMS Agent Host Fails To Start

What Exactly Does The Error Mean?

This is something of a niche error, as your server will not use the SMS Agent Host utility unless it has Microsoft SMS deployed. It’s also worth noting that newer versions of this service are referred to as System Center Configurator Manager. Anyway, assuming you’re using Microsoft SMS, the agent may occasionally fail to start on a reboot.

What Could Be Causing It?

According to Microsoft Support, there are a few possible reasons for this error:

  • You’ve changed the system time on your client computer with a maintenance/service window open for Microsoft SMS collection, with mandatory advertisement for said collection.
  • Microsoft SMS Agent Host is simply timing out as a result of a glitch with older versions of the software.
  • Your antivirus solution is not properly set to exclude SMS Agent Host or a related utility; or it has executed a scan while Wsusscan.cab is being copied.

What’s The Solution?

In all but the last case, the solution is to download the related hotfix. A list can be found here. It is also recommended that you set up your antivirus with the proper exclusions, as explained here.


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