Article ID: 113491, created on Mar 20, 2012, last review on May 11, 2014

  • Applies to:
  • Operations Automation
  • Plesk 11.5 for Windows


IIS cannot start on a Windows server, the following error is logged in the Event Viewer:

Event Type:     Error
Event Source:   Service Control Manager
Event Category: None
Computer:       WEBWIN01
Description:    The IIS Admin Service service terminated with service-specific error 2148073478 (0x80090006).


IIS metabase and/or crypto keys are corrupted on the server.

Crypto keys are located in the 'C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Crypto\RSA\MachineKeys' folder, IIS Admin server depends upon the keys for encryption/decryption of metabase keys.

In particular, IIS needs the keys with names starting from c23 and 7a4. Look at the suffix of the names of these keys which is starting after the '' character (underscore), it has to be equal to Machine GUID which may be found in the system registry at the following path - HKEYLOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Cryptography\MachineGUID. So, the name of keys which are important for IIS are:

  • c23***********************_MachineGUID

  • 7a4***********************_MachineGUID

If keys are broken or machine GUID has been changed and key were not regenerated then IIS will not be able to start.


Restore crypto keys from backup.

Additional information

More detailed description of crypto keys and how they are used in IIS may be found by the following links:

Search Words

IIS Admin Service

IIS cannot start

service-specific error 2148073478 (0x80090006)

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