Windows Vista Services

Shell Hardware Detection - Windows Vista Service

Provides notifications for AutoPlay hardware events.

This service also exists in Windows 10, 7, 8 and XP.

Startup Type

Windows Vista edition without SP SP1 SP2
Starter Automatic Automatic Automatic
Home Basic Automatic Automatic Automatic
Home Premium Automatic Automatic Automatic
Business Automatic Automatic Automatic
Ultimate Automatic Automatic Automatic

Default Properties

Display name:Shell Hardware Detection
Service name:ShellHWDetection
Path:%WinDir%\System32\svchost.exe -k netsvcs
Error control:ignore

Default Behavior

The Shell Hardware Detection service as LocalSystem and runs in a shared process of svchost.exe. If Shell Hardware Detection fails to load or initialize, Windows Vista start up proceeds. No warning is displayed, but the error is recorded into the Event Log. At least one service depends on Shell Hardware Detection. Therefore I do not recommend you to disable it.


Shell Hardware Detection will not start, if the Remote Procedure Call (RPC) service is stopped or disabled.

If Shell Hardware Detection is stopped, the Windows Image Acquisition (WIA) fails to start and initialize.

Restore Default Startup Type of Shell Hardware Detection

Automated Restore

1. Select your Windows Vista edition and Service Pack, and then click on the Download button below.

2. Save the RestoreShellHardwareDetectionWindowsVista.bat file to any folder on your hard drive.

3. Right-click the downloaded batch file and select Run as administrator.

4. Restart the computer to save changes.

Note. Make sure that the shsvcs.dll file exists in the %WinDir%\System32 folder. If this file is missing you can try to restore it from your Windows Vista installation media.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.