DCOM Server Process Launcher

Description:
The RPC and DCOM features have been split into two services. This one handles all local requests and runs with Local System privileges. Remote Procedure Call (RPC) handles remote requests and runs with limited Network Service privilege. If an attacker compromises the Remote Procedure Call (RPC), then it will only have limited access to the machine.

Note the following things will fail if this service is not running:
  • The builtin defrag will fail to work, and if running Defrag.exe from the command line one gets this error:

    Windows cannot connect to the Disk Defragmenter engine

  • System Information (MsInfo32) will fail to work and give this error:

    Can't Collect Information
    A network error occurred in connecting to Windows Management Instrumentation. Ensure that your network connection is functioning properly.

  • If Windows Firewall is enabled, then it will fail to start and all incomming traffic will be blocked. More Info MS KB892199
  • Disk Management will fail and give this error:

    The RPC server is unavailable

  • Media Player 10 will fail to burn and sync and give this error:

    The RPC server is unavailable

  • The install of new applications will fail and give this error:

    The InstallShield Engine (iKernel.exe) could not be launched.
    The RPC server is unavailable.

Recommended State:
  • Automatic
Default State:
  • Win8/Win7/Vista: Automatic
  • WinXP SP2: Automatic
  • Win2k3 SP1: Automatic
Process Name:
Supports:
Depends:
  • None

Updated: 13 December 2012

Comments:

  1. clogman says:

    Good info, but....
    After sustaining a damaged registry, I found that RPC Server was always unavailable and finally tracked down this link with DCOM. BUT, in Services there is no mention of DCOM on my machine, so how do I re-instate DCOM?
    HELP!

  2. snakefoot says:

    clogman
    How do I re-instate DCOM?

    Would recommend that you performed an inplace upgrade of Windows. What version of Windows are you using ? (XP SP2, Vista, ...)

  3. Justin says:

    I've noticed that after setting the Server service to manual, the Windows Image Acquisition service to manual, the DCOM Server Process Launcher service to disabled, and the Task Scheduler service to manual that the Network Connections folder was empty when it should have been expanded on the Start Menu (Eg: Expand Network Connections), and also the System Tray Network applets were gone too. They reappeared after I started those services and then right clicking Network Connections to open it. Very strange. I wonder which service it needed.

  4. Snakefoot says:

    It seems (when looking at google) that lots of people experience that Windows shuts down with the following popup error mesage:

    DCOM Server Process Launcher Service Terminated Unexpectedly. The shutdown is done by NT Authority/ System. Shut down in 60 seconds.

    This is most likely caused by malware, and I have posted a solution in this Forum Thread.

  5. otteppinno says:

    I have a process running as a child of the DCOM Server Process Launcher service, and I want to stop it from starting.
    Do you know how to do that?

    FYI, it's called HP1006MC.EXE, identified as being SMLMProxy Module developed by Software 2000 Ltd. It was created when installing the drivers (only!) for a HP LaserJet P1005n, and I cannot see any valid reason for it to be running.

    Thank you.

  6. Anand says:

    Thank you snakefoot,
    I run winxp with service pack3 and I am worried about malaware creeping into my system with DCOM process as I read in some reports in google. Please can you let me know if it OK to set this process in Manual mode.
    Thank you

  7. praneeth says:

    If i start DECOM server , then i can see that it's status is starting and it is throwing some exception.Every time i have to start it manually and started accessing Internet Service. But, is there a way to make DECOM server in automatic mode? please help me out

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