IBM Support

"Failed" Action Status

Technote (troubleshooting)


What does it mean if an action has 'Failed'?

Resolving the problem

An action comes back as 'Failed' if the Fixlet message that you took the action from is still relevant after the action has completed.

An action can fail for many reasons including:

  • The Fixlet action to download and run a file, such as a Microsoft patch, did not run correctly (for example, the update program crashes, the computer was turned off, etc.)
  • The Fixlet action download did not match the SHA1 checksum of the file
  • The Fixlet action successfully completed, but did not cause the Fixlet message to become fixed because the Fixlet action was incorrect
For more details about why the Fixlet action failed, double click on the action status for the computer that failed and you will see more information about the action. If you see a "FAILED" status message on any line, it means that line did not run properly. Based upon which line failed, you can get more information about the problem. Sometimes the action will come back as 'Failed' even though all lines are 'Completed'.

For example:
The action has been run 1 time, and will not be run again. The action failed.

Completed: download

Completed: continue if {(size of it = 449216 and sha1 of it = "a8177992611be18ee8a93fbbc0e4389ce815b450") of file "DirectX81-KB839643-x86-ENU.EXE" of folder "__Download"}

Completed: wait __Download\DirectX81-KB839643-x86-ENU.EXE /passive /quiet /norestart

Completed: run RunQuiet.exe qchain.exe

Completed: action may require restart

Notice that all the lines completed, but the action still Failed. This indicates that the command (in this case a patch from Microsoft) was started properly but the patch package didn't complete its installation properly. The TEM Client is indicating that it ran the action without any problem so at this point, troubleshooting the problem is similar to the troubleshooting by applying a patch manually as if directly sitting at a computer. Try remoting into the system and manually running the patch package installer. Look for any error messages that may pop up indicating the reason the installation is getting blocked.

Note: When applying a patch manually it is best to install it while logged in as the Local System user, if possible, as this is the context in which the TEM agent runs in. To run the machine in the Local System context see

Here are a few tests we recommend:

  • If it is a relatively isolated incident (most computers are coming back 'Fixed' except a few reporting 'Failed'), try sending the patch again. Sometimes patches simply don't run for various reasons, but when you retry them, it works again.
  • Make sure that the Windows Update service is enabled., this can be found on most windows platforms by running services.msc
  • If the action fails multiple times, try restarting the computer and send the action again. Sometimes the computer is in an inconsistent state and cannot apply the action. (Note: Both this test and the test above can be accomplished automatically by setting the failure retry behavior in the "Take Action" dialog when you create the action.)
  • If the action continues to fail, you might want to try to run the action manually on the computer. For instance, in the example above, try to run the patch manually from the computer and see if it gives a more descriptive error message. Sometimes the patches are simply broken and will not apply on computers that they are supposed to.
  • If it is an Office patch, make sure the TEM Clients are properly set to access the correct Office CD.
  • If there are a large percentage of computers failing for a specific Fixlet message, then there might be a problem with the Fixlet message. Please contact TEM Technical Support if you feel that the patches are being applied successfully but the Fixlet message is not detecting it properly.

Historical Number


Document information

More support for: IBM BigFix family

Software version: All Versions

Operating system(s): Platform Independent

Software edition: Edition Independent

Reference #: 1505777

Modified date: 03 September 2014