Link: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/relational-databases/linked-servers/create-linked-servers-sql-server-database-engine?view=sql-server-ver15#to-create-a-linked-server-to-another-instance-of-sql-server-using-sql-server-management-studio

I have a windows group configured as sql login.

While configuring linked server, under local login, I can see the windows group sql login listed in the dropdown.

The above link doesn't mention anything about windows group. Does linked server local login support windows group (with/without impersonation)? If not then why is that option showing up windows group in the dropdown?

This link says its not possible, but it's very old: https://www.sqlservercentral.com/forums/topic/linked-server-and-windows-group-local-login

I am looking for documentation mentioning about this.

enter image description here

  • SQL 2019 I do not see windows group in the drop-down. I only see the principal types SQL_LOGIN and WINDOWS_LOGIN. Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 11:54
  • 1
    Thanks I think I might have confused since the names looked like group names. I take it that using groups is not possible then..
    – variable
    Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 11:57

1 Answer 1


No, groups are not allowed; if you try you will get this error xxxx\groupname is not a valid login or you do not have permission even if the group is valid. enter image description here This is by design.

To use groups, you have to work with AD groups in the target server, set proper permission and use kerberos autentication. To do that you have to set connection made with "login's current security context".


With kerberos authentication you can authorize in target server a group and have your user use linked server with their windows logon on the remote server, based on group membership. But you have to setup kerberos constrained delegation. link

But you can do this only if the remote server is in the same or trusted domain and is using windows authentication.

  • You say the error is xxxx\groupname is not a valid login or you do not have permission, even though its a valid login?
    – variable
    Commented Oct 21, 2021 at 11:43
  • I didn't get this point To use groups, you have to use integrated security and domain groups, not local groups., can you explain.
    – variable
    Commented Oct 21, 2021 at 11:43
  • I tried to reply to you editing the answer above
    – MBuschi
    Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 7:15
  • Does Be made using this security context (last option) work with groups?
    – variable
    Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 7:20
  • When the AD group is a sql login on the server on which linked server is being setup, then why is group not allowed?
    – variable
    Commented Oct 22, 2021 at 7:24

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