We have a couple of production WCF services failing to start because their ports are apparently in use by another process. I have done a netstat -ano and found the PID's that are using these ports, which are all in the LISTEN state. The ports for endpoints/services hosted in the same processes all have the same PID's, so that checks out.

The problem is, I can't see any of these PIDs in Task Manager. When trying the -b option netstat reports that the process is [System]. It reports the correct process name for the services that are working, but not for these ports.

I suspect that old instances of our services may be hanging around...and a server reboot may fix that, but I would prefer to know what is going on before taking action. Unfortunatly I am not allowed to install Process Explorer in prodction environments.

What other options do I have to find out the names of the processes with these PIDs? Sorry about what may be a noob question but I am not a sys admin :)

Thanks Michael


You can use SysInternals' TCPView; it doesn't require any installation, you can simply run it without having to install anything (which is also true for Process Explorer, BTW).

TCPView is also able to forcibly close connections and listening sockets.

  • I might look down this path, thanks. I know Process Explorer doesn't technically require installation, but the people managing these servers above country (who also can't help on this issue as its our application...) will have a fit if I put something on there that is not on their checklist without going through paperwork to have it done. Probably will have a 2 week turnaround on that, and they will screw it up. If I can convince the right people though... :) – MrLane Jul 20 '11 at 6:19

One method which may provide some additional "hints" is to telnet against those port(s) to see if the running process(es) "gives themselves" up via some connection banner.

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