Made a mistake and mistyped an alter database command for tempdb.

Now the instance won't start. I can't start in single user mode using -m as it states the tempdb could not be found. I tried using:

net start msqsqlserver /f /t3608

But then I can't actually connect to the instance at all using either sqlcmd or ssms.


Start SQL Server as an application, not a service, in minimal config mode, and only recovering master, from a command prompt:

[path to this instance]\BINN\sqlservr.exe -c -f -T3608

(Add -s InstanceName if this is a named instance.)

Now, in a different command prompt, connect using SQLCMD:

sqlcmd -S InstanceName -E

And issue a correction (triple-check this!!!), then shut the application down:

> GO
  • I did end up getting in via this method though I am unsure initially why it was not letting me connect. In the end I disabled all the services, bounced the box and ran the VM without a network connection and it seemed to work. Thanks for the pointers though. Hope this is useful for someone else in the future too! – Tim Alexander Nov 28 '13 at 8:35
  1. Start sql server in single user mode - Net Start MSSQLServer /mSQLCMD /f/t3608

  2. To be in single user mode sqlcmd -S. –E

  3. Run the commands

Alter database tempdb modify file (name = tempdev, filename = 'E:\SQLDATA\DEFAULT\tempdb.mdf')

Alter database tempdb modify file (name = templog, filename = 'E:\SQLDATA\DEFAULT\Templog.ldf')

  1. Stop sql server Net stop mssqlserver

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