[gptalk] Re: Applying Computer Settings... delay

  • From: "Doyle, Ryan W." <rwdoyle@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 14 Nov 2008 09:15:42 -0600

I thank those who have responded, and I definitely will investigate
digging deeper into the logs.

The puzzling thing for us is the lack of consistency.  We use an
identical image on all PCs, but have found that if we start disabling
3rd party services, one at a time, there is no service which directly
links to this problem.  On "machine A," we may disable anti-virus and
see the delay disappear.  On "machine B," we may disable SMS 2003 and
see the delay disappear.  On "machine C," it might be the personal
firewall software,  etc. etc.

It almost seems like the system is delaying due to some contention
between services.  Once one or more are disabled it flies.  Oh, and by
"flies," I mean it isn't even on the "Applying Computers Settings..."
message long enough to spot it, or it's there for 1 second, at most.  It
seems our experience is either super-fast or super-slow.  There is no
middle.

Again, thanks.  If I find a solution I'll post it here.

Ryan

-----Original Message-----
From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of Cruz, Jerome L
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2008 8:25 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: Applying Computer Settings... delay

Ryan,

I'm going to agree with the others here (and add other tidbits of
information). Our experience is that what gets displayed on the screen
at boot up time doesn't quite jibe with what's happening under the hood.
Microsoft has programmed a limited set of display information into that
status message dialog box. What we have observed over the years is that
the last item displayed will stick until the next 'programmed to display
item' appears. To the average user, this apparently means that the
system being displayed is taking a very long time. SO that's the system
that gets 'blamed' for the delay.

As the others have stated, in almost all cases, that is very far from
the truth. In most cases, the displayed sub-system has started,
processed, and completed its activities and the status display dialog
just sticks with its last message until the next programmed 'display'
item is told to replace the message. I the meantime, the system is doing
all kinds of other things. Follow the advice noted in previous messages
to get the logs. Only an analysis of those logs will tell you what's
'really' happening.

[If your GPOs configure a lot of permissions that have to be inherited
down (Registry hives / File system trees), then these 'can' be the cause
of the delays. However, once applied, they won't necessarily re-apply
for various time periods. For example, by default, the security system
will mandatorily re-apply all security settings every sixteen hours
(that's the default time and the time interval between re-applications
can be changed with a registry hack). Unless you understand 'how' and
'when' GPOs apply and refresh, then you can't estimate how repeatable
the problem might be.]

========================================================================
=====
That said, there is a way to get the initial boot up dialog window to
display a bit more verbosely (though nowhere near what I'd like to see).

Activate the setting as follows:

   Computer Configuration | [Policies] | Administrative Templates |
System

   Verbose vs normal status messages

   Explanation: Directs the system to display highly detailed status
messages.  <== "highly' detailed... hmmmm
   If you enable this setting, the system displays status messages that
reflect
   each step in the process of starting, shutting down, logging on, or
logging
   off the system. This setting is designed for sophisticated users that
require
   this information.

   Note: This setting is ignored if the "Remove Boot / Shutdown / Logon
/ Logoff
         status messages" setting is enabled.
========================================================================
=====

We have noticed similar delays and behaviors for wireless
laptops/notebooks/etc. We have the "Wait for the network" setting
engaged on all out devices, so they 'do wait' for a network. You might
take a look at the system types that are having problems and see if they
are similar.

Jerry Cruz | Group Policies Product Manager | Windows Infrastructure
Architecture | Boeing IT

-----Original Message-----
From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]
On Behalf Of rpo
Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2008 3:54 PM
To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [gptalk] Re: Applying Computer Settings... delay

ryan,

darren is right when he makes mention of drivers possibly being the
cause of start times.

'applying computer settings' takes minutes here also. when i analysed
the userenv.log, i noticed there was a 2-3 min delay between
establishing the link speed and actually processing gpos. further
analysis revealed that during this 2min period windows is loading
essential processes like svchost.exe and spoolsv.exe. it also loads
the profiles for system and localservice. now while this kind of stuff
is unavoidable, i also noticed that 3rd party apps like to load their
processes at this time also. in our case, mcafee and sms2003.

i did a test of removing those two products and observed startup times
reduce by a couple mins. what i would suggest is use a product like
policy reporter from sysprosoft to help you analyse the userenv.log
and idenitfy where your slowness ocurrs.

unfortunately if you see the same problem as me, it's likely there's
little you can do. as removing antivirus software and sms clients just
cannot be done.

daniel.

On 14/11/2008, Darren Mar-Elia <darren@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>
>
>
> Ryan-
>
> I don't have a great answer for you here. It could be something that
is
> trying to run at least once and until it does, it causes issues, but
what
> that could be, I'm not sure. I have seen the Windows Update client
process
> to hang a workstation and this phase of GP processing so that is a
> possibility worth investigating, but outside of that, it could also be
some
> hardware\network interface driver issue that manifests itself this
way.
>
>
>
> Darren
>
>
>
>
> From: gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:gptalk-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Doyle,
> Ryan W.
> Sent: Thursday, November 13, 2008 7:06 AM
> To: gptalk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [gptalk] Applying Computer Settings... delay
>
>
>
>
> Greetings,
>
> We have been battling a very frustrating problem where some (not all)
of our
> PCs in the corporate offices are experiencing a 120 second delay at
the
> "Applying Computer Settings..." portion of the boot-up process.  This
portion
> of boot-up is prior to the user logging on, so it is not related to
user
> policies.  However, I do believe this is where the PC (Windows XP SP2)
is
> attempting to locate a DC and apply machine GPOs.
>
> This problem is especially frustrating because we can take a
troublesome PC
> and reproduce the problem over and over.  However, various
troubleshooting
> techniques will seemingly fix the problem and then we can never
reproduce it
> on that PC.  For instance, if we set all 3rd party services to
"disabled"
> and reboot, the problem goes away.  Re-enable the services and the
problem
> does NOT come back.
>
> Similarly, we've found that if we reorganize the "Network Provider
Order" in
> the advanced network configuration the problem will go away.  However,
after
> restoring the provider order to the original order, the problem does
NOT
> come back.
>
> We've engaged Microsoft for help, but they seem stumped, as well.  So,
I'm
> reaching out to this forum to see if anyone has seen an issue like
this or
> may have any idea which may lead us toward a root cause.
>
> Many thanks for any thoughts!
>
>
> Ryan Doyle
>
> Marathon Oil Corporation
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