I cannot start the SQL Server 2012 service. The event log says the service-specific error code is 3417.

In the Event Viewer:

The SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER) service terminated with the following service-specific error:
WARNING: You have until SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER) to logoff. If you have not logged off at this time, your session will be disconnected, and any open files or devices you have open may lose data.

I've changed the service logon account in the service properties but this error happened again.

I think the problem is in the master database, but I do not know what to do.


I've try Rebuild the Resource database but this error happened again!

  • Do you have working backups of the system databases? If you do, then I suggest you rebuild your system databases on the instance, and then restore the backups.
    – RoKa
    May 21, 2013 at 11:37
  • No! So how i can restore when i can't connect to sql server?
    – mehdi
    May 21, 2013 at 11:41
  • 1
    When you rebuild the system databases, you will be able to connect.
    – RoKa
    May 21, 2013 at 11:53
  • 2
    No, you can rebuild using the original media set. See this link here: msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd207003.aspx
    – RoKa
    May 21, 2013 at 12:54
  • 1
    @RoKa: ...huh? I've never seen this particular error before, so no, it's not obvious (at least not to me). Since you seem very clear on what the problem is, consider posting an answer with an explanation of the issue, and the necessary steps to resolve it.
    – Jon Seigel
    May 21, 2013 at 15:40

2 Answers 2


That error is usually associated with the Master database, so you are on the right track. Does the service account have access to the directory where the Master database resides?

There should be some additional errors in either the SQL Server error log or the Windows event log that may narrow down the issue. Look for access denied messages or cannot find file messages associated with the master database and other system databases.

One other thing I have found on other sites is folder compression being a problem. Make sure SQL Server does not reside on a compressed folder or drive.

If that doesn't work, then rebuild as suggested.

  • This cryptic message is still valid for SQL Server 2019 and event viewer shows no other clue except that SQL Server service is stopped. The cause was that DBs (DATA directory) should not be compressed, using the transparent NTFS compression. Why doesn't SQL Server check this prerequisite on start?
    – Svilen
    Aug 30, 2021 at 21:47

what has solved the error 3417 for me it is something very simple.

Before I apply patches I take note of the sql server service account and all the folders it has permissions in the server and the level of permissions.

then I apply the updates, as you can see on the picture below, BUT, before I hit the reboot button, I re-apply all the folders permissions to that account.

enter image description here

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