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Failed to start task


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Hi, I'm a long-time IT guy who just started working last week for someone else after many years of being in business by myself.  Needless to say, I'm new in their environment and with their tools so this question may simply be a learning issue.  For all of the below I followed the steps I found from ESET.


The task for yesterday was to use ERA to first deploy the ERA Agent to all the clients.  After a couple of tests I sent the main task off to 64 clients (of which the detail of the results says 26 Denied Access, 40 Failed Task and 38 were successful - not sure how it came up with 104, but that's a different question).


Next I tried a test of setting up a couple of Client Tasks to deploy the update using the directions that can be found here: hxxp://support.eset.com/kb3605/

Although each one used the trigger type "As Soon As Possible," each one showed up as Planned: "no" even though the detail showed it was set to run ASAP.  Since there was no "Run Now" button like I found with the Server Tasks, each eventually timed out with the error "Failed to start task."


A quick search of the forums found other things I ran into, but not this one so I'm hopeful that it's simply a learning issue on my part.





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  • ESET Staff

As you seem to be new in ERA6, I will ask basic question: were those clients you targeted client task actually connecting to your ERA Server? Can you see last connection time to be updating? Even if remote deployment task was successful, there may be connection problem. Are clients you targeted software installation task marked as managed in Webconsole?


For each client you targeted client task, in it's client details view you should be able to see task execution details with order of operations that were executed - do you see any specific error there? You have not specified version of ERA you are using, but there should be even possibility to access trace message sent from AGENT that may be indicating problem. In case there will be no history records for task execution, it is possible client not even received task for execution.


Regarding misleading numbers in deployment task results - numbers may be true as for each client, multiple deployment methods are being tested - based on their platform. For example WMI-based deployment may fail on access denied, but "Windows network" deployment targeting the same client computer may be successful. For windows clients, especially those not accessible, there will be 3 failed deployment attempts.

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Hi, thanks for the reply!  Yes, we just upgraded to ERA6 so I am new.  The targets were definitely connecting to the ERA Server, in fact, manually deploying the ESET upgrade on a client is reflected in the Computers tab as managed (and the last connection time to be updated is, well, updating!).


Although I set each task's trigger to run "As Soon As Possible," in the client task information the summary line would say "no" under Planned but each detail line under that would say "Run As Soon As Possible."  Since, unlike with the Server Tasks area, there's no "Run Now" button, I couldn't do much except watch them eventually expire.  I couldn't find any reason why they won't run.


Also thanks for confirming my guess on the misleading numbers.  I'm already finding out that, for whatever reason, sometimes just rerunning a task that gets an Access Denied or Failed Task can cause it to be successful.


Since I'm new, I'm just trying to determine if I did something incorrect to cause the client tasks to not run or if it's something else and I'll have to update each client manually.

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  • ESET Staff

If I recall correctly, ASAP triggers will be always marked as not planed - my guess is that planed tasks are those that will be executed later and maybe even repeatedly (CRON based triggers for example).


Could you please check task execution history (documentation) whether you see any progress information for this specific task execution on this client. Normally you should see records like "Task started" and "Task failed".

Software installation task is time consuming and there are multiple operations that could possibly block for longer time, namely:

  • client has to download installer package which may be around 100MB
  • client has to install MSI package which may take some time depending

it is also possible that task finished in the meantime - could you check client computer for product you tried to install using task? Even if task is marked as timeouted after 60 minutes, it may have ended successfully after some time. In case you will be able to access client computer, please try to restart AGENT service only to check whether restart is possible.


Last possibility is to diagnose problems using AGENT's trace.log (see it's location in documentation). In case there won't be any relevant errors, enabling full verbosity and re-running task may be helpful.

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I checked those before I posted here.  From my original post:


...each eventually timed out with the error "Failed to start task."




I'll check out your last point and see what I can find.  Thanks again for the ideas!

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