DNSCache Timeout

Systems: Windows 2000 Professional and Server versions

Error / Problem:  

System running slow and logging "DNSCACHE Timeout" events with event ID 7011

Event ID 7011 - Source: Service Control Manager


Timeout (30000 milliseconds) waiting for a transaction response from the DNSCache service.

This problem can be caused by having a hosts file with a very large number of entries (throusands) which results in the timeout and errors detailed above.

The hosts file is by default located in: "C:\winnt\system32\drivers\etc" and has NO file extension.

Some anti-spyware products such as "Spybot Search and Destroy" have the option to add many domain names to the hosts file to block access to sites known to be "bad neighbourhoods" - but this causes issues with Windows 2000.

Windows XP and later operating systems are not affected by this issue.

To resolve, either edit the hosts file manually, deleting the majority of the entries, leaving at least the default entry:

127.0.0.1       localhost

Note: the hosts file may be "Read-only" and you may need to <Right-Click> the file and select "Properties" and untick "Read Only" and <Click> Apply to allow the file to be saved.  Change the file back to "Read Only" when finished.