Windows XP RPC Service Settings puzzle

Mesh / Xtreme gps
March 9, 2013 at 01:02:56
Specs: Windows XP, Quad Q9450/4GB
I'm puzzled by a couple of things when I open the Services dialog for Remote Procedure Call (RPC).

1. Why are these settings greyed out? It means I could not Start/Stop the service if needed for some troubleshooting reason.

2. Why is this (and the RPC Locator) the only services not set to Local System?

3. I changed it to Local System by way of experiment but then couldn't change it back. Had to do an SR. But even if the boxes weren't greyed out, I wouldn't have a clue what password has been used.

Any advice or insight would be appreciated please.

P.S: I placed the URLs above inside the proper tags using the Link icon, but they didn't appear in the preview or final post! So I then just entered them as normal text. Now they have been correctly displayed. I'm confused.

Terry, East Grinstead, UK

See More: Windows XP RPC Service Settings puzzle

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March 9, 2013 at 01:28:25
You should never, under any circumstances, disable the RPC Service; this is, no doubt, why it greys out those settings. It is vital to the proper operation of Windows.

The NetworkService account is just a particular security principal used for remote calls (I guess you might not want to give a remote call the same access as you might local services). The account does not have a password, so any password information that you supply is ignored.

It is sensible not to make changes to services that you don't understand as you could end up with an unbootable system.

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March 9, 2013 at 08:29:57
Thanks, but:
1. I didn't want or try to disable it
2. I posted the wrong link on that point, sorry, should have been
which as you see does show a p/w. Same for the RPC Service.

Terry, East Grinstead, UK

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March 9, 2013 at 09:50:15
Some system services are critical to Windows and they cannot be stopped or paused. The RPC service is one of them. You should not attempt to change anything about any system service unless you really understand what you are doing. This is far too complex to be described in a forum post.

From what I understand the system accounts do have a password but for practical purposes they do not. You cannot find out what they are and you cannot use them. Anything entered in the password field will be ignored.

Again, this is not simple.

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Related Solutions

March 9, 2013 at 10:07:12
+1. If you don't understand it, don't mess with it.

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March 9, 2013 at 13:03:05
Well, I posted in the expectation that someone would understand more about it than me. But looks like I was mistaken!

Terry, East Grinstead, UK

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March 9, 2013 at 13:48:11
TBH, I find that pretty rude. I have explained to you that the service is a vital component of Windows, I have explained that you should never stop it, I have explained why it runs under a particular profile, and I have explained what the password is - or isn't - for that account. So yes, I - and others - have demonstrated that we know a lot more about this than you do. Take it or leave it.

Comments like yours, together with the increasing number of people who never respond to help, are beginning to make it seem like a waste of time giving help here.

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March 9, 2013 at 23:33:59
OK, rudeness certainly wan't my intention. But take a look at this from my viewpoint. First, you apparently failed to read my question carefully. (I'd asked about temporarily stopping, not disabling). Second, you appeared to assume that I was some careless newbie, so your two replies collectively came across as patronising. Third, your reply about passwords was apparently wrong and dented my initial assumption that you had high technical expertise on the XP OS. (Admittedly, I didn't help you much by failing to reference my screenshot showing the password entries, but you could have quickly run Services to see yourself.)

I'm not a regular user of this forum so it could well be that your starting premise based on other posters was justified. And I do agreee that it's important to caution inexperienced users about the risks of uninformed dabbling. But I've been using a PC for 31 years. And I think there was enough evidence in my post to give you pause before assuming I was a novice. A keen sense of curiosity, yes, but a bumbling idiot, no!

For the particular (unrelated) issue I was troubleshooting I had good reason for investigating whether RPC (and/or RPC Locator) was implicated.

But your last point strikes a sympathetic chord. In the various forums in which I contribute my own expertise, I feel the same way when my carefully researched replies, often generous with illustrations, never get a word of feedback.

Finally, if you take a look at this thread (the first of several relevant Google hits I subsequently found)
you'll see that it is possible and sometimes desirable to stop RPC. With care it can be done without risk. But without care - as you and LMiller7 have implied - with dire results!

Where are the smilies around here?

Terry, East Grinstead, UK

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March 10, 2013 at 03:44:01
I'll applaud your search skills, but I can't applaud your reading skills. Just because the Internet will tell you how to do something doesn't mean it is something that you should do. If you read the comments under that link you will find many to the effect that "Doing this killed my system". As for the password problem, again Google will help you. This account has no password, but it will happily accept whatever you type in. The fact that you see asterisks in the password field means nothing.

Anyway, I've had enough of this thread and pretty much enough of this site. If I come across as not knowing what I am talking about then I am clearly wasting not only my time but everyone else's. I can put my time to better use than this.

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March 10, 2013 at 07:13:59
Each service has a set of attributes that describe the operations (stop, start, pause, resume) that it supports. This allows a program like the service manager to show only the operations that are allowed. In the case of the RPC service none of these are allowed. Any attempt to perform a disallowed operation would fail.

Each service has a list of dependent services (often empty). In the case of the RPC service this list is quite lengthy. I don't know what would result from a failure of the RPC service during operation but I doubt they would be very pleasant. I am not inclined to experiment to find out. A failure during bootup will result in a restart.

There are technical reasons why some services have different accounts. I don't have time to explain.

Be aware that some minor errors may be present in any short explanation. This saves lengthy explanations which no one has the time to provide.

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