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Article ID: 251192 - Last Review: September 11, 2011 - Revision: 6.0

This article was previously published under Q251192

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SUMMARY

To remotely create and start a service from the command line, you can use the SC tool (Sc.exe) included in the Resource Kit.

Although you can use the Netsvc.exe and Instsrv.exe tools to start a service on a remote computer, these tools do not give you the ability to remotely create a service.

Note The Srvinstw.exe tool is the graphical user interface (GUI) version used to create remote services. Srvinstw.exe is not a command-line tool.

MORE INFORMATION

You can use Sc.exe to help develop services for Windows. Sc.exe, which is provided in the Resource Kit, implements calls to all of the Windows service control application programming interface (API) functions. You can set the parameters to these functions by specifying them on the command line. Sc.exe also displays service status and retrieves the values stored in the status structure fields. The tool also lets you specify the name of a remote computer so that you can call the service API functions or view the service status structures on the remote computer.

Sc.exe also allows you to call any of the service control API functions and vary any of the parameters from the command line. The advantage to this is that it provides a convenient way to create or configure the service information in the registry and the Service Control Manager database. You do not have to configure the service by manually creating entries in the registry and then restarting the computer to force the Service Control Manager to update its database.

Sc.exe uses the following syntax:

Syntax1 (use Syntax1 to run Sc.exe)
sc [Servername] Command Servicename [Optionname= Optionvalue...]
Syntax2 (use Syntax2 to display help information, except for the query command)
sc [Command]

Parameters

  • Servername
    Optional. Specifies the name of the server when you want to run the commands on a remote computer. The name must start with two backslash (\) characters (for example, \\myserver). To run Sc.exe on the local computer, do not supply this parameter.
  • Command
    Specifies the sc command. Note that many of the sc commands require administrative privileges on the specified computer. Sc.exe supports the following commands:
    Config
    Changes the configuration of a service (persistent).

    Continue
    Sends a Continue control request to a service.

    Control
    Sends a control to a service.

    Create
    Creates a service (adds it to the registry).

    Delete
    Deletes a service (from the registry).

    EnumDepend
    Enumerates service dependencies.

    GetDisplayName
    Obtains the DisplayName for a service.

    GetKeyName
    Obtains the ServiceKeyName for a service.

    Interrogate
    Sends an Interrogate control request to a service.

    Pause
    Sends a Pause control request to a service.

    qc
    Queries configuration for the service. For detailed information, see the reference section, "SC QC."

    Query
    Queries the status for a service, or enumerates the status for types of services. For detailed information, see the reference section, "SC QUERY."

    Start
    Starts a service

    Stop
    Sends a Stop request to a service.
  • Servicename
    Specifies the name given to the Service key in the registry. Note that this is different from the display name (which is what you see with net start command and the Services tool in Control Panel. Sc.exe uses the service key name as the primary identifier for the service.
  • Optionname
    The Optionname and Optionvalue parameters allow you to specify the names and values of optional command parameters. Note that there is no space between the Optionname and the equal sign. You can supply none, one, or more optional parameters name and value pairs.
  • Optionvalue
    Specifies the value for the parameter named by Optionname. The range of valid values is often restricted for each Optionname. For a list of available values, request help for each command.
Many of the commands require Administrator privileges. Make sure that you are an administrator of the computer where the development is being performed.

The sc create command creates an entry for the service in the registry and in the Service Control Manager database.

Syntax
sc [Servername] create Servicename [Optionname= Optionvalue...

Parameters

  • Servername
    Optional. Specifies the name of the server when you want to run the commands on a remote computer. The name must start with two backslash characters (for example, \\myserver). To run SC on the local computer, do not supply this parameter.
  • Servicename
    Specifies the name given to the service key in the registry. Note that this is different from the display name, which is what you see with net start and the Services tool in Control Panel. Sc.exe uses the service key name as the primary identifier for the service.
  • Optionname
    The Optionname and Optionvalue parameters allow you to specify the names and values of optional parameters. Note that there is no space between the Optionname and the equal sign. You can supply none, one, or more optional parameters name and value pairs. The sc query command supports the following values:OptionnameOptionvalue
    type=own, share, interact, kernel, filesys
    Type of service you want to create. Optionvalues include types used by drivers.
    (default = share)

    start=boot, system, auto, demand, disabled
    Start type for the service. Option values include types used by drivers.
    (default = demand)

    error=normal, severe, critical, ignore
    Severity of error if the service does not start during boot.
    (default = normal)

    binPath=(string)
    Path name to the service binary file. There is no default for this parameter. This string must be supplied.

    group=(string)
    Name of group which this service is a member of. The list of groups are stored in the registry under ServiceGroupOrder.
    (default = nothing)

    tag=(string)
    If this string is set to "yes," Sc.exe obtains a TagId from the CreateService call, however, Sc.exe does not display the tag.
    (default = nothing)

    depend=(space separated string)
    Names of services or groups that must start before this service.

    obj=(string)
    Name of account in which the service runs. For drivers, this is the Windows driver object name.
    (default = LocalSystem)

    DisplayName=(string)
    A string that can be used by user-interface programs to identify the service.

    password=(string)
    A password string. This is required if an account other than LocalSystem is used.
Optionvalue
Specifies the value for the parameter named by Optionname. See the Optionname reference for a list of supported values. When a string is to be input, the use of empty quotes means that an empty string is passed in. Note that there is a space between OptionValue and the equal sign.

Note The sc create command performs the operations of the CreateService API function.

The following example creates a registry entry for the service named "NewService" on the computer called \\remotecomputer:
sc \\remotecomputer create newservice binpath= c:\nt\system32\newserv.exe
Note In Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008, the binpath is located at C:\Windows\System32\Newserv.exe.

This service is created as a WIN32_SHARE_PROCESS with a SERVICE_DEMAND_START start-type by default. It does not have any dependencies, and runs in the LocalSystem security context.

The following example creates the service on the local computer as an auto-start service that runs in its own process. It has dependencies on the TDI group and on the NetBIOS service. Notice that you must add quotes around the list of space-separated dependencies.
sc create newservice binpath= c:\nt\system32\newserv.exe type= own start= auto depend= "+tdi netbios"
Note In Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008, the binpath is located at C:\Windows\System32\Newserv.exe.

For further details about the Sc.exe tool, please see the Sc-dev.txt document in the Resource Kit. This document describes Sc.exe in greater detail.

APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 3.51
  • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition for Itanium-Based Systems
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition for Itanium-based Systems
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition (32-bit x86)
  • Windows Vista Home Basic
  • Windows Vista Home Basic N
  • Windows Vista Home Basic N 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business
  • Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business N
  • Windows Vista Business N 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • Windows Vista Home Basic 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Ultimate
  • Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Windows Server 2008 Standard
  • Windows Server 2008 Enterprise
  • Windows Server 2008 Datacenter
Keywords: 
kbhowto kbexpertiseinter kbinfo KB251192
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