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KB #240126: NetLib Key Management Service in Start Pending status


Known Issue

Affected Operating Systems:

Windows Server 2016, Windows 10


After a system reboot, the “NetLib Encryptionizer Key Manager” Service (KMS) randomly gets stuck in Start Pending status making encrypted databases appear as Suspect or in Recovery Pending.

Additional Information:

This is a known issue on Windows 10 and Server 2016: after reboot the NetLib Encryptionizer Key Manager Service (KMS) randomly gets stuck in “Start Pending” status. The KMS is responsible for delivering encryption key(s) at runtime to the Secured instance of SQL Server. Since the encryption key(s) are not delivered to the Secured instance of SQL Server, that means that SQL cannot access the encrypted database files so they will appear in Recovery Pending or Suspect. We are working on this problem and expect to have a permanent fix in the near future.

Temporary Workaround:

Until this issue is permanently resolved, you can work around it by taking the steps below. These steps require that you open a Command Window as Administrator.

1) Confirm that this is the source of the problem: Open a Command Window as Administrator and run the following command:


The status will show as one of the following:


If that status is not START_PENDING then this is not the cause of the problem. Research other KB articles or contact NetLib Support.

2) Terminate the KMS Service executable: Still in the Command Window, run the following command


3) Restart the KMS Service by running this command:


4) Manually restart the Secured SQL Server instance. The encrypted databases should now be accessible. If they are not, restart the process at step 1 as it may take one or two attempts. If you are still not able to access the encrypted databases, contact NetLib Support.

Related Topics:

240102: Cannot start SQL Server or encrypted database is inaccessible when profile is on a remote machine

Last modified: 10/6/2018