[Short url for this article – http://doiop.com/ocsFE_issue]

I am sure you must be facing this issue suddenly in your OCS production environment. This is quite interesting. I’m just sharing my experience. It’s also quite funny that Microsoft releases ‘Security updates’ and ends up bringing down a production server. One of the Windows security update KB974571 has broken OCS R2; that’s why OCS Front-End service Stopped.

My OCS Server, LiveMeeting; Group Chat environment was working fine until Yesterday. But Today when i have tried to login to OCS, I was not able to login. Then i checked for my OCS Server; found that all of the OCS Services are in started state except OCS Front-End service.
I tried to restart my OCS FE, but i ended with the following service specific error 3286842403 (0xC3E93C23).

Log Name: System
Source: Service Control Manager
Date: 10/15/2009 11:22:54 AM
Event ID: 7024
Task Category: None
Level: Error
Keywords: Classic
User: N/A
Computer: FTI-360-VM1.ima64.com
The Office Communications Server Front-End service terminated with service-specific error 3286842403 (0xC3E93C23).
Event Xml:




Office Communications Server Front-End
3286842403 (0xC3E93C23)

I was just clueless for a moment. I was not ready to accept that something has gone wrong with my OCS Server as nobody has access rights; also it was working fine till late night yesterday. I did not know how to proceed from there for a moment.

I took a dip breath; then restarted my system. But still the same issue was there.
Then i started thinking what might went wrong in last 8 hours. Suddenly i thought let me check for updates happened in my system last night.

Then after half an hour I figure it out, that One of the Windows security update KB974571 has broken OCS R2; that’s why OCS Front-End service Stopped.

I removed this Windows update & restarted my OCS Front End Service.
Then it worked fine for me.

It’s a bug in windows update….. They have managed bring down a critical product service with the release of a windows update.

This could happen for LCS & OCS R1 deployments also.

Please also note of another complexity that affects end users –

Auto-upgrades are enabled on end user desktops as well. Security Update KB974571 will be applied on end user desktops. Hence users will not be able to login to OCS though the FE Server is up, after removing the offending update from the FE Server.

But the users without this Security update will be able to login to OCS. To address this issue, end users too need to uninstall this update from their desktops. This is applicable for LCS as well.