Run scheduled tasks as System

Posted on 2003-03-05
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-04
In Windows XP Professional, when I schedule any task to be run as System whether from Task Scheduler or from schtasks command; or when I run the task manually to test it, the SchedLgU.txt log registers the next error:

The specific error is:
0x8007052e: Logon failure: unknown user name or bad password.
Verify that the task's Run-as name and password are valid and try again.

The Run-as name is correct and the System account doesn't have assigned any password.

If I try to run them as a user account it works. I know that, by design, a password is required to properly run scheduled tasks, and that this requirement can be disabled from Local Security Policies BUT I need to schedule some tasks to be run as SYSTEM cause I need full access to ALL the files, and that tweak doesn't fix anything for me. So, if as schtasks command help announces "the password is not required when using the /RU "", or the other two forms of the modifier to schedule a task to be run as System account", why devils the account is not recognized?

With Sysinternals Regmon I've realized that the Scheduler tries to find a subkey under HKLM\SAM\SAM\Account\User\[subkey]; and that success to find the correspondant one when the task is run as any user account but not when run as System.

And... The Task Scheduler Service is correctly configured to logon through the System account.

The question is:

Why the System account is not being recognized?

Thank you very much indeed for your possible help.

Question by:whyer

Accepted Solution

NEOsporin earned 150 total points
ID: 8077192
the system account does have a password, but you'll never be able to set it. When you run something as the system account, you need no RunAs... System is the MOST PRIVLEDGED account on your box, more so than administrator. This may be why it fails for you. Read this:
Again, the system account, has it's own functionality, for the system, and user task's such as a scheduled anything, will have to use a user account, with the proper priv's to execute that scheduled anything... it's just not the design of the account, thanks to M$.

Author Comment

ID: 8082358
So, ¿Is not possible to schedule a task to be run using the System account? If it's possible, please correct me and say me how to attain it and take me out of this mess.

Thank you very much.

Expert Comment

ID: 8085525
No- It's not- in the first link i sent this is a quote:

--->The system account was designed for that purpose; it is an internal account, does not show up in User Manager, cannot be added to any groups, and cannot have user rights assigned to it. <------(except for File permissions)

The system account is for the internal OS stuff, if you look at Task Manager, you'll see the services started by SYSTEM. These are CORE services for the most part. For example the SYSTEM account creates the pagefile on your hd, if you remove the system account from the drive that your pagefile resides on, you'll see an error. The system account is what boot's up your machine, the system account is what will run your scheduled task, in the sense that IT TRIGGERS the task as you configured it. That is to say, and this is a stretch, not a great example but:
Say your PC isn't logged in as anyone, but is running, and you configured a scheduled task to run as "WilliamTell" user. The System account is going to internally "double-click" the scheduled task to run, and the task will go as planed, WilliamTell will start the program you scheduled to run at that time, and then that task will end.

You can however use the system account to start a Service, such as mcafee virus scanner, or VNC server... etc.. services can also be started with user accounts.
Here's more of what I touched on earlier.



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Author Comment

ID: 8090270
Thank you very much for your detailed answer NEOsporin that has clarified me some things about the System account; but my main doubt comes from the fact that is possible to use the System account in the schtask command syntax using the /RU "" or the other two forms of the modifier in order to run a task as System. And is also feasible to specify the System account in the 'run as' text box of the Task Scheduler.

Maybe, those two practicable methods, which possibility is expected in the first case and at least uncorrected in the second one, are only conceived to schedule a service start to logon using the System account or schedule, if is that possible, another internal OS "thing"?.

Thank you very much again and I apologize for my insistence.

Expert Comment

ID: 9070795
This old question needs to be finalized -- accept an answer, split points, or get a refund.  For information on your options, please click here-> http:/help/closing.jsp#1 
Post your closing recommendations!  No comment means you don't care.

Expert Comment

ID: 23192415
The answer provided earlier is wrond.
It is possible to schedule tasks with the Systems account using the AT command.
Issue AT /? at command line to get details for use.

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