I ran a backup into a folder. The Network Service has full control access to this folder. The backup process didn't work until I granted that account full control.

I try to restore that same file but I get an error

Operating system error 5 (failed to retrieve text for this error. Reason: 15105).

If I move the file to the instance's actual folder it restores fine, so the file itself is not bad.

Is there something slightly different in the folder rights needed to run a backup versus a restore? What is that difference? FYI, I am doing all this programmatically using a C# application. To test the above backup/restore, I've used the server management tool.

The user access was done via the C# code, though. Here is the main line:

myDirectorySecurity.AddAccessRule(new FileSystemAccessRule(sqlserviceuser,FileSystemRights.FullControl,AccessControlType.Allow));

I connect to the database using a SQL Server authenticated user, not a Windows user, so I can't add the 'logged in' user as full control to the folder.

  • can you tell me, how you restore the 'backup' file. Mar 16, 2015 at 5:22
  • You have to grant permissions to the user SQL Server runs as. You can check that using SQL Server Configuration Manager or services.msc (not recommended)
    – BuahahaXD
    Mar 16, 2015 at 5:40
  • 1
    Is it possible that the restore is failing due to lack of permissions on the destination folder(s) for the data/log files? Can you show the actual restore command you're using? Mar 16, 2015 at 14:13
  • other then the granting of access to the folder (to the Network Service user, who is the login user for the SQL Server services), i am doing everything via the Management console. I can backup the database to the folder.. then immediately try and restore and it fails. I copy the file to the instance's folder, and the restore will work fine. the 'command' in the management studio is right clicking on the database -> Tasks -> Restore -> database...
    – daBich
    Mar 16, 2015 at 22:25
  • I'll stress that the restore works fine from the instance's folder if i take the very same file i tried in the other folder... but the backup works fine in either folder. is there anything Restore requires more as far as folder access rights, compared to backups?
    – daBich
    Mar 16, 2015 at 22:31

1 Answer 1


found it. turns out the permissions command I was using isn't enough for a restore (it's enough for the backup). Granting the full access rule on the folder isn't enough - it has to be on "the folder, subfolders and files".

basically two more lines of code:

myDirectorySecurity.AddAccessRule(new FileSystemAccessRule(sqlserviceuser, FileSystemRights.FullControl, InheritanceFlags.ContainerInherit, PropagationFlags.None, AccessControlType.Allow));

myDirectorySecurity.AddAccessRule(new FileSystemAccessRule(sqlserviceuser, FileSystemRights.FullControl, InheritanceFlags.ObjectInherit, PropagationFlags.None, AccessControlType.Allow));

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