How to Kill a Windows 10/11 Service that is not stopping

If you are an IT support administrator, sometimes you may come across a situation where the Windows service process hangs at “Stopping” or “Not Responding“. They would then need to kill the Windows that hangs on stopping.


ADVERTISEMENT

This situation occurs when you try to stop a service, but it does not allow you to.  Also, the control buttons for the service are frozen and hence, you are not allowed to stop the service from the Service control manager/services.msc. While you can restart your Windows 10 PC and check if it resolves the issue, it may not work most of the times. Instead of rebooting the server, you can try killing the Windows service that hangs on stopping. Let’s see how.

 

Method 1: Using Taskkill in Command Prompt

 

Find out the service name

 

Step 1: Right-click on Start and select Run to launch the Run command window.

 

Start Right Click Run

 

Step 2: In the Run command window, type services.msc and hit Enter to open the Service manager.

 

Run Command Services.msc Enter

 

Step 3: In the Services window, look for the service which has hung.

Make a note of the Service name.

 

*Note – For instance, we are facing an issue with the Realtek audio and so we double-clicked on Realtek Audio Service.

 

Services Name Note Down Service Name

 

Next, in the Realtek Audio Service dialogue box, we noted the Service name, which is RtkAudioService.


ADVERTISEMENT


 

Properties General Service Name Ok

 

Find out the service PID and Kill the PID

 

Step 1: Press the Win + R shortcut keys to open the Run command window.

 


ADVERTISEMENT

Step 2: In the search field, type cmd and press the Ctrl + Shift + Enter keys together to open Command Prompt in admin mode.

 

Run Command Cmd Ctrl + Shift + Enter

 

Step 3: Copy and paste the below command in the Command Prompt (admin) window:

 

sc queryex servicename

 

*Note – Replace the highlighted part with the service named you noted above.

 

Command Prompt (admin) Run Command With Service Name Enter

 

Step 4: Make note of the PID of the service.

 

Command Prompt (admin) Run Command With Service Name Enter Note Pid

 

Step 5: Now, in the same elevated Command Prompt window, run the below command and hit Enter:

 

taskkill /f /pid PID

 

*Note – Replace the highlighted part with the PID  you copied in the Step 4.

 

Command Prompt (admin) Run Command With Noted Pid Enter

 

Step 6: On successful completion of the process you will receive the below message:

 

The process with PID XXXX has been terminated

 

*Note – Make sure you kill the right process and not a critical Windows service which may force your PC to restart automatically.

 

Method 2: By Stopping Windows Services using PowerShell

 

Windows PowerShell is another option using which you can force stop the service. Here’s how:

 

Step 1: Right-click on the Start menu and select Windows PowerShell (Admin).

 

Start Menu Right Click Windows Powershell (admin)

 

Step 3: Copy and paste the below command in the Windows PowerShell (admin) and hit Enter to get a list of services in the stopping condition:

 

Get-WmiObject -Class win32_service | Where-Object {$_.state -eq 'stop pending'}

 

Windows Powershell (admin) Run Command To Stop Service Enter

 

Step 4: Now, you can terminate the processes of all the detected services using Stop-Process cmdlet.

You can create a loop by adding both the operations and get a command that automatically kills all the stuck service processes.

Method 3: By Looking for the Hang Process in Resource Monitor

 

Resource Monitor is another app that can help you find the process that caused the process to hang. Let’s see how:

 

Step 1: Right-click on Start and select Run.

 

Start Right Click Run

 

Step 2: This will open the Run command box.

Here, type Resmon in the search field and hit Enter to open the Resource Monitor app.

 

Run Command Resmon Enter

 

Step 3: Select the CPU tab and look for the stuck process.

Right-click on the process and select Analyze Wait Chain.

 

Resource Monitor Cpu Process Right Click Analyze Wait Chain

 

Step 4: In the Analyze Wait Chain window, you will see that your selected process is waiting for another process.

Select the process thread/s and click on the End process button below.

 

Analyze Wait Chain Elect The Process Thread End Process

 

*Note – You don’t need to kill it, if you are waiting for svchost.exe or another process.

You can also analyze the wait chain for this process.

Look for the PID of the process that the svchost.exe file is waiting for and terminate it.

 

Method 4: By Killing a Hung Process using Process Explorer

 

Even if you are the local administrator, you may not have permissions for some processes and as a result, you may not be able to kill some processes that are aligned with the SYSTEM. Therefore, in order to terminate such processes, you must grant enough permissions to the local Administrators. For this, you would the assistance of two utilities – psexec.exe and ProcessExplorer.

 

Step 1: Visit the below link (Microsoft’s official download page) to download the Process Explorer app.

 

https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/downloads/process-explorer

 

Microsoft Official Link For Process Explorer Download Prorcess Explorer

 

Step 2: Open the Zip folder and drag the procexp.exe file to the desktop.

 

Zip Folder Procexp.exe Drag To Desktop


ADVERTISEMENT

 

Step 3: Now, right-click on it and select Run as administrator.

 

Process Explorer Right Click Run As Administrator

 

Step 4: When in the Process Explorer window, go to the left side of the window and under Process, select the process that’s hung on stopping.

Right-click on it and select Properties.

 

Process Explorer Process Right Click Properties

 

Step 5: In the Properties dialogue box, select the Services tab  and click on Permissions.

 

Properties Services Permissions

 

Step 6: Now, in the Permissions dialogue box, under the Security section, go to the Group or user names field and select Administrators.

Next, go to the Permissions for Administrators field and check the Allow box next to Full Control.

Press OK to save the changes.

 

Permissions Group Or User Names Permissions For Administrators Allow Check

 

Step 7: Press OK again the Properties window to apply the changes and exit.

 

Now, try and kill the windows service that hangs on Stopping.

 

 

Many users have also reported, sometimes simply rebooting your system can help fix the issue. If the issue persists, contact the Microsoft Support and schedule it for some odd hour and it should fix the issue sometimes.

 

ADVERTISEMENT