Parsec Service And How It Allows For Interaction With UAC, Admin Screens, And Windows Lock Screen


Applies to: Hosts

The Parsec Service allows Parsec to restart itself with administrator privileges.

This allows Parsec to pass inputs from connected clients to elevated screens and applications like;

  • User Access Control, commonly referred to as 'UAC'
  • Task Manager
  • Windows' Lock Screen
  • Games and Applications running 'As Admin'

Without this, hosts may find some games and applications missing from Approved Apps, and connected clients will be locked out from all input when an elevated screen or application is in focus.

Checking And Fixing The Parsec Service

A Quick TL;DR

Ensure the Parsec service is running via either Task Manager's Services tab or Services, start it if it's stopped, and then restart Parsec.

To make sure it's set up correctly, ensure that the Parsec service is set to 'Automatic' start in Services.

Open Task Manager via Ctrl+Shift+Escape, the taskbar's right-click menu, or by searching for "Task Manager" in your start menu, go to the Services Tab, and sort by name by clicking the 'name' column at the top.

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If the Parsec Service is running, you'll see Running like above. 

In the Task Manager Details tab, please also confirm that pservice.exe and parsecd.exe are running as SYSTEM.

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If Parsec is not running properly, pick the section that applies to you and follow the steps given;

pservice.exe is not running at all


Firstly, you should switch to the 'Services' tab in Task Manager and start the Parsec Service via its right-click menu. If you cannot find 'Parsec' in the Services list, then either Parsec did not install correctly and you should reinstall it, or you're using the portable version of Parsec, which should instead be run 'As Admin' if you intend on hosting with it.


After that, you can restart Parsec via parsecd.exe's right-click menu in the notification area on the right side of your taskbar as shown above. You may need to click the little arrow if the icon is hidden in the tray. Parsec should now be running as intended.


However, while this does fix the issue, it's worth checking Services to ensure that the Parsec Service is set to automatically start when your PC boots.


Look for 'Parsec' in the list, much like with Task Manager, and go to its 'Properties' via its right-click menu. Ensure that the Startup Type is set to Automatic, and change it to that if it's not. You can then click 'Apply' and close both the 'Properties' windows and Services.

pservice.exe is running, but parsecd.exe's Username is not 'SYSTEM'


Simply restart Parsec, and then parsecd.exe should start running with Username 'SYSTEM'

You can do this via parsecd.exe's right-click menu in the notification area on the right side of your taskbar as shown above. You may need to click the little arrow if the icon is hidden in the tray.

pservice.exe is running, but its Username is not 'SYSTEM'

When pservice.exe is manually run, it will run as your own Windows Username unless you run it "As Admin". It's best that you terminate the process by clicking "End Task" on it's right-click menu in Task Manager, and then follow the section on "pservice is not running at all" above.