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Fix for Helm: Adding a MSSQL Database to a Domain Fails, and I Get ‘SQL Server Does Not Exist or Access Denied’ in the Log

If you’re receiving the error “SQL Server does not exist or access denied” when trying to add an MSSQL database to your domain, follow the steps below:

  1. First, make sure you have SQL Server installed on the server.

    *Note: You cannot add databases using MSDE, as it is a single instance cut-down version and does not provide this functionality. You need the *full* version of SQL Server in order to add databases. Either SQL Workgroup, or SQL Standard or Enterprise edition.

  2. Now, make sure that the SQL Server service (located at Home > System Settings > Servers > Your Server > SQL Service) has the SA username and correct password. This ensures Helm can connect and create the database.
  3. Next, check SQL itself. You need a default instance of SQL to be present. This is selectable from the actual installation of SQL Server.

    For instance, you may have something like:

    but no default instance, which would just be:

    Without the default instance, Helm won’t be able to access SQL Server to add databases.

*Note: As of version 3.2.8 of Helm, named instances of MSSQL are now supported.


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