Situation: Windows 2008 SP2 Standards Servers on ESX 4.0 Vm’s. The servers had non persistent disks and every monday revert to their original image. The VM’s were recently changed to have 2 vCPU’s.
Problem: Come the Monday morning reset all the servers stopped responding and were hanging at boot up on ‘Applying Computer Settings’ and for user logons ‘Applying user settings’
After setting the server to persistent and getting the event logs the following was the only obvious error logged
The winlogon notification subscriberis taking long time to handle the notification event (StartShell).
Solutions: There is a MS article for the listed problem which simply sets a dependency of the ‘HTTP service’ to wait for the ‘Cryptographic Services’
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2379016 Applying this registry key or hotfix (we did both to two separate servers) seems to have resolved the errors