Unable to load user-specified certificate [Cert Hash(sha1) "SOMERANDOMHASH"]. The server will not accept a connection. You should verify that the certificate is correctly installed. See "Configuring Certificate for Use by SSL" in Books Online.

I am getting this error even though it's installed.


I even followed both methods to install it, one through pfx and the other with snap-in, and then modified the regedit entry before restarting MSSQL through the SQL Server Configuration Manager, but it won't restart. Is there a reason for this and are there ways to investigate what's going on? I installed on production, but it doesn't work on the staging environment.


1 Answer 1



In my case, it's the permission for the certificate that was missing. So I went to Services.msc, and then went to the permission modal and then searched through the whole computer (by default it's set to mycomputer.local instead of the whole computer), and then found the matching user and then gave it read access to the certificate and then simply restarted the SQL Server.

  • 1
    You can do it directly through the "Local Certificates" snap-in: right click, All Tasks, Manage Private Keys Mar 13, 2022 at 16:18

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