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Encyclopedia > Service Control Manager

The Windows Service Control Manager (SCM) is a remote procedure call (RPC) server that manages creating, deleting, starting and stopping of Windows services. It is started at system boot and is RPC based so that service configuration and service control programs can manipulate services on remote machines. [1] Microsoft Windows is the name of several families of proprietary software operating systems by Microsoft. ... MSRPC (Microsoft Remote Procedure Call) is a modified version of DCE/RPC. Additions include support for Unicode strings, implicit handles, inheritance of interfaces (which are extensively used in DCOM), and complex calculations in the variable-length string and structure paradigms already present in DCE/RPC. The DCE 1. ... // Definition A Windows service is an application that starts when Windows is booted and runs in the background as long as Windows is running. ... In computing, booting (booting up) is a bootstrapping process that starts operating systems when the user turns on a computer system. ...

The service functions provide an interface for the following tasks performed by the SCM:

  • Maintaining the database of installed services.
  • Starting services and driver services either upon system startup or upon demand
  • Enumerating installed services and driver services.
  • Maintaining status information for running services and driver services.
  • Transmitting control requests to running services.
  • Locking and unlocking the service database.

The Service Control Manager maintains a database of installed services in the registry. The database is used by the SCM and programs that add, modify, or configure services. The HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServices registry key is used for storing this database. An initial copy of the database is created when the system is installed. The database contains entries for the device drivers required during system boot. The database includes the service type, startup type, error control level, fully qualified path of the service executable, optional dependency information and optional account name and password about each installed service and driver service. Windows XP loading drivers during a Safe Mode bootup A device driver, or a software driver is a specific type of computer software, typically developed to allow interaction with hardware devices. ... The Registry Editor in Windows Vista By- Laxmikant Sharma, Retina-X, Jaipur, India. ...

During system boot, the SCM starts all auto-start services and the services on which they depend. For example, if an auto-start service depends on a demand-start service, the demand-start service is also started automatically. The user can also manually start a service with the Services management console. The user can specify arguments for the service in the Start parameters field. A service control program can start a service and specify its arguments with the StartService function. MMC on Windows Server 2003, running Computer Management snap-in The Microsoft Management Console (MMC) is a component of modern Microsoft Windows operating systems that provides system administrators and advanced users with a flexible interface through which they may configure and monitor the system. ...

When a service is started, the SCM performs the following steps: // Definition A Windows service is an application that starts when Windows is booted and runs in the background as long as Windows is running. ...

  • Retrieve the account information stored in the database.
  • Log on the service account.
  • Load the user profile.
  • Create the service in the suspended state.
  • Assign the logon token to the process.
  • Allow the process to execute.

Winlogon is the Windows NT component responsible for handling the default secure attention key, loading the user profile on logon, and optionally locking the computer when a screensaver is running (requiring another authentication step). ... In the Windows NT architecture, a token is a system object (type name Token) representing the subject in access control operations, i. ...

See also

// Definition A Windows service is an application that starts when Windows is booted and runs in the background as long as Windows is running. ... In computing, mechanisms and techniques for managing services often differ by operating system. ... In Unix and other computer multitasking operating systems, a daemon is a computer program that runs in the background, rather than under the direct control of a user; they are usually instantiated as processes. ...


  1. ^ Service Control Manager information on MSDN



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