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PCAnywhere: unable to connect to host. host is busy

Created: 25 Feb 2014 | 6 comments

Hi all,

I had a windows server 2003 SP2 installed with PCAnywhere 10.5 and it was still working until last week.  However, I got an error message "unable to connect to host. host is busy" this week.  I check the server and the host shows it is waiting for connection but I still got the "host is busy" message while trying to connect from other machines.  I reinstalled the PCAnywhere with version 12.5 and the problem remains. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Operating Systems:

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orville c.'s picture

Hi mike,

We solved our same problem today with an xp machine used for transmitting to. Also tried both versions,

turned off firewalls, ipx, avast turned off. nothing worked. Then when changed the default ports from 5631 and 5632 to two non standard ports on both the host pcanywhere options, host communications, advanced host tcp/ip options and the remote detail button to match, and the connection worked again. We do not know if this is a comcast situation, router, or dns slamming, but it solved it after two hours banging on it!

good luck, let me know if it helped...

mikelu75025's picture


Thanks for your help and it did resolve my problem after I change the PCAnywhere ports.

geno55's picture

Hi Orville!

I have same problems.

Can you please explain what's "non standard ports" mean?


Gary Karasik's picture

Unfortunatley, there's no simple way to explaing how to to this. You'll have to read the manual. But basically, IP addresses have "ports" that can be assigned. pcAnywhere, for instance, uses ports 5631 and 5632, and both the host and remote must be set to the same ports to establish a connection. You can change these ports (must be changed on both ends). So you can change the ports to 5633 and 5634. These would be "non-standard," since the "standard" is 5631 and 5632.


ssv1984's picture

Hi Mikelu75025,

1st secenario,

What is the version of PCAnywhere you have reinstalled?

To check, open PCAnywhere -> help and about.

12.5 Built 1086(SP4),1206(SP5) are the latest versions where the host and remote files are encrypted.

These versions are not backward compatible with 10.5.

12.5 Built 442 is the last version where PCAnywhere is backward compatible. - to get this version we have to contact symantec people.

2nd secenario,if you have reinstalled with the version 10.5.

1. Try to recreate the host service in the host computer -> Start -> run -> services.msc -> Symantec PCanywhere host service.

2. We can create a new host file,

a) You can see the host file in the bottom system tray -> give a right click and stop it.

b) open PCanywhere -> hosts -> delete the host file.

c) To create a new host file ->

let us know if that helps

3rd secenario because of ports,

Check with the ports 5631 and 5632 as mentioned by the other users.




ssv1984's picture


Is your issue resolved or do you need any other suggestion. Fell free to update the status .