here is a summary of the problem and the steps taken to resolve the problem - if anyone else encountered this problem or anyone know of options available please could you help. Essentially: SQL Server Agent fails and fails to come online. There is no SQLAGENT.OUT file created, and no errors in the application or cluster logs apart from the generic "SQL Server <SQL Server>: [sqsrvres] SvcStop: service did not stop; giving up." (SQLGroup) SQL IP Address (online) SQL Network Name (online) SQL Server (online) SQL Server Agent (failed) SQL Server Fulltext (online) SQL Disks (online) Research on problem: When a resource is brought online the Cluster Service calls the resource dll (sqsrvres in the case of the SQLAGENT Service). This then calls SCM (Service Control Manager) to start / stop the SQLAGENT Service. When SQLAGENT starts it will then create the SQLAGENT.OUT file, however there appears to be an error at this stage. Subsequently SQLAgent doesnt start. Any help appreciated.