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How to Create a Windows Service

 ·  ☕ 3 min read

This article goes over how to create a windows service.

I will be going over 3 different ways to create a windows service. Check the legend to skip to the method you’d like to use. They will be: PowerShell, 3rd Party Tool, and Windows Resource Kits.

Create Windows Service with PowerShell

Microsoft Source Article with ALL Syntax - Microsoft Link

TestService Example:
New-Service -Name "TestService" -BinaryPathName "C:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe -k netsvcs"

Create Windows Service for Java Applications with WinSW

https://github.com/winsw/winsw is the project that is a fantastic wrapper for windows services.
You will download this exe and rename it to your needs. It is configured by the included XML file under the same name.

Create Windows Service with NSSM

http://nssm.cc is the official site for this 3rd party tool method.

To show service installation GUI:
nssm install [<servicename>]

To install a service without confirmation:
nssm install <servicename> <app> [<args> ...]

To show service editing GUI:
nssm edit <servicename>

To retrieve or edit service parameters directly:
nssm get <servicename> <parameter> [<subparameter>]
nssm set <servicename> <parameter> [<subparameter>] <value>
nssm reset <servicename> <parameter> [<subparameter>]

To show service removal GUI:
nssm remove [<servicename>]

To remove a service without confirmation:
nssm remove <servicename> confirm

Create Windows Service with Windows Server Resource Kit 2003

  • Download Windows Server Resource Kit here
  • Run the executable to install the Resource Kit
  • Open up a command prompt and run the following to install a service stub (default install location used in this example):
  • You may substitute “EQBC Service” with whatever name you would like to give to the service for display purposes
"C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\instsrv.exe" "New Service" "C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools\srvany.exe"
  • Run regedit to edit the Windows registry, and navigate to the following registry key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\New Service
  • From the Edit menu, select New, select Key, and name the new key Parameters
  • Highlight the Parameters key
  • From the Edit menu, select New, select String Value, and name the new value Application
  • From the Edit menu, select Modify, and type in the full path name and application name, including the drive letter and file extension.
    Example: C:\MQ2\eqbcs.exe
  • Now go to Start and Run and type in services.msc
  • From here scroll down to New Service (or whatever name you gave the service above), right-click and select Properties
  • On the General tab, change the Startup type to Automatic
  • Click the Start button to start your service
  • Select the Recovery tab, and you have the option of changing the drop-down boxes for First-Failure and so on to Restart the service
  • Select OK and you are finished

Conclusion

Each one of these ways have their uses and I have used each method for different programs. It is great to learn to use all of the above examples or at least make yourself familiar with them.

I live stream on Twitch and encourage you to drop in and ask a question. I regularly publish on YouTube and christitus.com, but if you need immediate assistance, check out the Terminal Cafe with Discord Invite Link.

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Chris Titus
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Chris Titus
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