In a word, yes; the DHCP CLIENT service should be running on EVERY computer including DHCP servers. The DHCP CLIENT service is in the dependency chain for many other services including:

dhcp client dependencies
  • Winsock
  • NetIO
  • Network Store
  • Network Location Awareness
  • WinHTTP Web Proxy

I found this problem when trying to figure out why the Network List Service (NLS) would not start. NLS is dependent on Network Location Awareness (NLA) which is dependent on the DHCP CLIENT service.

Put simply, no DHCP client service = no NLA = no NLS and that can have painful ramifications.

What Does the Network Location Awareness Service Do?

Without the Network Location Awareness service, the server cannot figure out if the computer is on a public or private network so it defaults to its safest setting which is PUBLIC. If a computer is PUBLIC the Windows Firewall will likely kick in and block all kinds of communication you do not want blocked.

network list service network location service network and sharing center dependency service failed to start

The NETWORK AND SHARING CENTER will show UNKNOWN – THE DEPENDENCY SERVICE OR GROUP FAILED TO START and the network icon in the bottom right corner of your screen will show an exclamation mark (aka “bang”) on it.

This is bad and will cause you ugly weird problems. It is a rockie mistake to turn off the DHCP Client Service on a server with a static address. Leave the DCHP Client service set to AUTOMATIC and RUNNING.

1 Comment

codeiherbSnurb · October 14, 2022 at 7:06 am

Thanks for explaining how this works. I was lost. I will leave the DCHP Client service running.

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