Issues with the WSUS 3.0 SP2 Administration Console

Updated: July 19, 2011

Applies To: Windows Server 2003 with SP2, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008 R2 with SP1, Windows Server Update Services, Windows Small Business Server 2011 Standard

If you get an error message when you use or try to access the WSUS administration console, use the following information to troubleshoot the problem.

If you cannot access the WSUS console and a timeout error message appears, the CPU of the WSUS server may be at, or very close to, maximum utilization, which causes the database software to time out. If the database software times out, the WSUS console cannot be displayed.

One way of inadvertently overtaxing your WSUS server is to have antivirus software monitor the WSUS content directory. During synchronization, the antivirus software can overload the CPU. You can work around this situation by setting the antivirus software to ignore the directory where WSUS content is stored.

If you are looking at a WSUS server on a network load balance cluster from a remote administration console, and the server that is currently the "master" server becomes unavailable, you may see the following error:

System.Net.Sockets.SocketException Message:
No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it
Source: System
Stack Trace:
   at System.Net.Sockets.Socket.DoConnect(EndPoint endPointSnapshot, SocketAddress socketAddress)
   at System.Net.Sockets.Socket.InternalConnect(EndPoint remoteEP)
   at System.Net.ServicePoint.ConnectSocketInternal(Boolean connectFailure, Socket s4, Socket s6, Socket& socket, IPAddress& address, ConnectSocketState state, IAsyncResult asyncResult, Int32 timeout, Exception& exception)

You should wait at least 30 seconds before you click Reset on the error message.

If client computers do not appear on the Computers page in the WSUS administration console, there is probably a problem with computer self update, which is the mechanism that WSUS uses to update Automatic Update software. For more information about client self update, see Issues with Client Computer Self-Update.

If there are locally published updates on the server, you may not see accurate status or counts for your computer because locally published updates interfere with the filtering mechanisms.

If you want to distribute an .msc file that connects to a server, you cannot create the .msc file on that server. Instead, use a console on another computer to connect to this server, and then save and distribute that .msc.

If you attempt to access the WSUS administration console, and you fail to connect to the server, you may get the following error:

The WSUS administration console was unable to connect to the WSUS Server via the remote API. 
Verify that the Update Services service, IIS, and SQL are running on the server. If the problem persists, try restarting IIS, SQL, and the Update Services Service.
The WSUS administration console has encountered an unexpected error. This may be a transient error; try restarting the administration console. If this error persists, try removing the persisted preferences for the console by deleting the wsus file under %appdata%\Microsoft\MMC\.
System.IO.IOException -- The handshake failed due to an unexpected packet format.

This error is probably due to the WWW Publishing service being configured to allow interaction with the desktop. To solve this problem, take the following steps:

  1. Open the Services snap-in (click Start, click Run, and then type services.msc).

  2. Right-click the World Wide Web Publishing service and select Properties.

  3. On the LogOn tab, clear the Allow service to interact with desktop check box.

  4. Click OK, and then close the Services snap-in.

  5. At a command prompt, type iisreset.

  6. At this point you should be able to access the WSUS server from the administration console again.

This error is caused by the issue that is described in article 919085in the Microsoft Knowledge Base.

In many cases, when you get a connection error, it may be helpful to run the iisreset command.

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