WWW Service not listed in the Services console (IIS 6.0)?

This post is a continuation to the series on IIS service startup issues. I did not feel like writing it since we haven’t seen much cases on this type of behavior and I thought this could be one of those rare issues which always happens with IIS but my customer who bore the brunt of trying to reinstall IIS multiple times without luck virtually forced me into writing it. So here I go…

Problem Description

IIS gets installed successfully on a fresh Win2k3 Server. IISADMIN service is up and running. However we do not see World Wide Service (WWW) listed in the Services console. Hence we cannot start any website.


If you are seeing a similar behavior as above you may want to follow the steps below.

1. Check for the default permissions as per this KB on

<SystemDrive:>\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Crypto\RSA\MachineKeys.

2. Open iis6.log from the location <SystemDrive:>\Windows and look for

OC_COMPLETE_INSTALLATION:iis_www:SetupInstallServicesFromInfSection failed.Ret=5

*Return code 5 suggests access denied


OC_CLEANUP:InetStartService():ServiceName=W3SVC unable to start

WARNING. Err=0x424


OC_CLEANUP:PostInstall of Component 'iis_www' FAILED

3. This suggests we are having some permission issues while installing IIS.

4. Download and run the Process Monitor tool from here while reinstalling IIS again from the Add/Remove Components wizard. Ensure we run it only during the install process since it collects a lot of data.

5. Check for any ACCESS DENIED entry in the log captured by the Process Monitor tool.

6. You may see an ACCESS DENIED for the Registry key

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\SvcHost.

Using the Process Monitor tool you can get the identity which does not have the permission. Generally it will be the current logged on user’s credentials running the wizard. Grant Full permission to the Administrators group (assuming that this user trying to install IIS is also a part of this group).

7. Reinstall IIS and hopefully you should be good.


If this does not help Microsoft PSS support for IIS is always there to help you out ;-)

Good Luck!!