Recently I attended one interview and this was the question:

Many Users reported that they are not able to connect to server.Where as I can connect to server.

My Answer :

I will check out their permissions in security context if their access is revoked or lost (But they still have permissions). May be their accounts are locked (No their accounts are not locked).

The Interviewer still expects more answer. What am I missing here? Can anyone help.

I thought of telling trigger but I am not sure .


2 Answers 2


As this is an interview question, start by working as it was an actual user probelm. Ask for an exact error message as it actually tells what's wrong. If the interviewer doesn't give you one, describe how you would get the error message from user. Would a screenshot do? How to get one? Would a screen sharing session be possible?

In order to troubleshoot any computer problem, you should create a work plan. For Sql Server connectivity troubleshooting, the basic problem locations and typical reasons can be outlined like so,

  1. Network issue. (No connection, invalid DNS)
  2. SQL Server configuration issue. (Service down, wrong port)
  3. Firewall issue. (IP restrictions, VPN issues)
  4. Client driver issue. (Wrong driver)
  5. Application configuration issue. (Typo in server name, misconfigured aliases)
  6. Authentication and logon issue. (Missing logon, missing user, missing permissions, missing AD groups)

The list is shamelessly ripped and adapted from MSDN blog article. Read it for more details.

For another an article, try Technet Wiki

  • Thanks @voPryz,you answer makes sense and really helpful. Dec 6, 2016 at 12:16

I would check if the users get access via an Active Directory Security Group.

  • This would miss the point, as it contradicts the I can connect to server part of the interview question.
    – vonPryz
    Dec 6, 2016 at 10:16
  • Yes, you're right. Edited answer.
    – Poldi
    Dec 6, 2016 at 10:29

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