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I am having a problem on several servers where an ASP.NET 4 application on IIS 8 (Windows Server 2012) application pool will not actually handle requests. The application pool status is listed as Started and its StartMode property is AlwaysRunning. Therefore, it is my understanding that stopping and restarting the app pool or recycling it should immediately launch a new w3wp.exe. However, the w3wp.exe never comes up nor are any errors logged anywhere I can see related to pool in the Application and System event logs. Attempts to access the site in Internet Explorer results in a spinning icon, a blank page, and "Waiting for www.example.com" in the tab title. Internet Explorer seems to stay that way indefinitely.

The problem can be temporarily resolved by rebooting the machine, or restarting both the Windows Process Activation and World Wide Web Publishing services.

What might the problem be? Ideas for troubleshooting?

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