I’ve been investigating a client site in which the Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service will not always start up reliably after a reboot. This is quite a pain as if it’s not running, it will cause havoc with the users Exchange configuration. What I decided to do was to change the service startup type from Automatic to Automatic (Delayed Start). Services start up and shut down based on the alphabetical list that they are in when you look at the Services console. If a service is set to Automatic, it will start automatically when the service manager gets to it. Certainly there are dependencies on some services which means that it will force start other services, but there can be problems with it at times.
Changing a service to Automatic (Delayed Start) will cause the service to NOT startup in the normal alphabetical order that they start up in. It will wait until 2 minutes AFTER the OS is booted and then start these services. By default some services such as Windows Update are configured like this already and they do this to improve the speed in which the server starts up.
Ok – so for the client experiencing these issues, I’ve reconfigured the Microsoft Exchange System Attendant service to be Automatic (Delayed Start) and so far it’s worked 100% of the time.
If you want to read more about this – check out this blog post from Microsoft here