Accounting CS: There is a problem accessing the SQL server

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Accounting CS cannot function properly when communication with the database server (Microsoft SQL Server) is interrupted due to environmental, network, or configuration issues.

The content of the following error messages varies based on the specific connectivity issue.

  • A network-related or instance-specific error occurred while establishing a connection to the SQL Server. The server was not found or was not accessible. Verify that the instance name is correct and that SQL Server is configured to allow remote connections. (provider: TCP Provider, error: 0 - The remote computer refused the network connection.)
  • An error has occurred while establishing a connection to the server. When connecting to SQL Server 20xx, this failure may be caused by the fact that under the default settings SQL Server does not allow remote connections. (provider: SQL Network Interfaces, error: 26 - Error Locating Server/Instance Specified)
  • SQL Server service has been paused. No new connections will be allowed. To resume the service, use the SQL Computer Manager or the Services application in Control Panel. Login failed for user 'CreativeSolutionsPracticeCsDatabaseOwner'.
  • A transport-level error has occurred when sending the request to the server. (provider: Shared Memory Provider, error: 0 - No process is on the other end of the pipe.)
  • A transport-level error has occurred when receiving results from the server. (provider: TCP Provider, error: 0 - The specified network name is no longer available.)

The following troubleshooting steps provide suggestions for resolving these errors—that are not unique to the CS Professional Suite applications—which prohibit connection to the MS SQL Server instance that the application uses. While the Thomson Reuters' support team may be able to provide some general guidance, we strongly recommend that you consult with your qualified IT professional who is familiar with SQL and your environment to assist in resolving these issues. For more information, see SQL Server best practices for CS Professional Suite applications.

Common fixes on a new installation of Accounting CS

If you have installed Accounting CS for the first time and connectivity issues occur at multiple workstations, then it could be the result of incorrect settings in the SQL server configuration. Typically, Accounting CS works properly when accessed from the machine on which the SQL server is installed (during Step 3 of the installation procedure). Issues like this can usually be resolved by checking for, and updating the following items.

Note: You may need the assistance of your IT consultant or network technician to complete these steps.

The SQL Server Browser Service is not running

  1. At the machine where the SQL Server instance is installed, choose Start > Run, enter Services.msc in the Open field, and then click OK.
  2. In the list of services, double-click SQL Server Browser.
  3. Verify that the Startup type is Automatic and that the Service Status is Started.
  4. If the SQL Browser is not started, then click the Start button to start the service, and then click OK.

TCP/IP Connections are not enabled for SQL Server

  1. At the machine where the SQL Server instance is installed, launch the SQL Server Configuration Manager.
    • For Windows 7 and Server 2008: From the Start menu, choose All Programs > Microsoft SQL Server 20xx > Configuration Tools > SQL Server Configuration Manager.
    • For Windows 8, 10, and Server 2012: Open the Search dialog from the Start menu, the Charms bar, or from the Run dialog, and then enter the following, depending on the version of SQL Server that you have installed.
      • SQL 2008: SQLServerManager10.msc
      • SQL 2012: SQLServerManager11.msc
      • SQL 2014: SQLServerManager12.msc
      • SQL 2016: SQLServerManager13.msc
      • SQL 2017: SQLServerManager14.msc
  2. Select SQL Server 20xx Network Configuration / Protocols for <InstanceName>.
  3. Verify that TCP/IP is enabled. If the status is disabled, right click and select Enable.

Named Pipes are not enabled for SQL Server

  1. At the machine where the SQL Server instance is installed, launch the SQL Server Configuration Manager.
    • For Windows 7 and Server 2008: From the Start menu, choose All Programs > Microsoft SQL Server 20xx > Configuration Tools > SQL Server Configuration Manager.
    • For Windows 8, 10 and Server 2012: Open the Search dialog from the Start menu, the Charms bar, or from the Run dialog, and then enter the following, depending on the version of SQL Server that you have installed.
      • SQL 2008: SQLServerManager10.msc
      • SQL 2012: SQLServerManager11.msc
      • SQL 2014: SQLServerManager12.msc
      • SQL 2016: SQLServerManager13.msc
      • SQL 2017: SQLServerManager14.msc
  2. Expand the SQL Server 20xx Network Configuration item in the left-hand pane, and then click Protocols for <InstanceName>.
  3. Verify that Named Pipes is enabled in the right-hand pane. If not, right-click Named Pipes and select Enable.
  4. Expand the SQL Native Client Configuration item in the left-hand pane, and then click Client Protocols.
  5. Verify that Named Pipes is enabled in the right-hand pane. If not, right-click Named Pipes and select Enable.
  6. Stop and restart the SQL Instance and the SQL Browser in either in the SQL Server Services section of the Configuration manager or in Services.msc under the name SQL Server <InstanceName>.

The Accounting CS Database Server machine is running a firewall

Running a firewall such as the Microsoft Windows Firewall can prevent workstations from properly connecting to a machine where the MS SQL instance resides. You can temporarily disable the firewall to test this issue, and if you find that running the firewall causes connectivity issues, you can add the appropriate exceptions for SQL-specific ports and executables. For details, see Windows Firewall Configuration for SQL Applications in CS Professional Suite.

Eliminating Accounting CS-related causes

If you are still encountering connectivity issues after completing the previous steps, use the following procedures to check whether the cause of the issue is related to the configuration in Accounting CS.

Errors occur on a limited number of workstations

Uninstall Accounting CS, and then reinstall the application by using the desktop setup process for each of the affected workstations. If you have multiple C:\WINCSI folders, you may need to confirm that the folder that you are using for the current SQL server installation corresponds to the correct (active) location for Accounting CS.

Note: We strongly recommend that any antivirus applications are disabled prior to reinstalling Accounting CS.

Errors occur at all workstations (including failures at the server)

Verify that the <MACHINENAME> and/or <INSTANCENAME> in the Datasource.xml file are present and correctly named. These values should properly identify the SQL server by name and the SQL instance that Accounting CS uses. The Datasource.xml file can be found in X:\WinCSI\Accounting CS Data (where X is the drive letter on the network).

Troubleshooting other causes

If the steps above have all been tested and eliminated as causes of the issue, you may want to contact your qualified IT professional to check for the following, less common issues.

The SQL Server is not started or responding

Start and restart the SQL Server instance that is used by Accounting CS. (On the SQL Server, choose Control Panel / Administrative Tools / Services.)

Notes

  • If you receive an error when you attempt to start/restart the SQL Server instance, reboot the server.
  • Check for additional SQL Services to ensure they are also started (the SQL Server Agent service is not required). Note that stopping and starting the SQL service affects other applications that utilize that database instance.

For workstations that run Windows 7 and have the Windows Firewall turned on

In certain circumstances, you may need to create an outbound rule that allows Accounting CS to connect to the SQL server. If outbound connections are restricted at a workstation, the application may not be able to connect to the SQL server. For details about creating an exception in the Windows Firewall on affected Windows 7 workstations, see Cannot connect to a SQL server on a Windows 7 workstation.

For unreliable Domain Name System (DNS) services in the networked environment

Replace the <MACHINENAME> in the Datasource.xml file with the IP address of the SQL Server. The Datasource.xml file is in the X:\WinCSI\Accounting CS Data folder (where X is letter of the network drive).

Use the following steps to determine the server's IP address.

  1. Choose Start > Run, enter cmd in the Open field, and then click OK.
  2. Enter the following command at the DOS prompt: ping <MACHINENAME>.

    Note: If you need the IPV4 IP address, enter ping MACHINENAME -4.

  3. The network response should be the following line of text:

    Pinging MACHINENAME [xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx] with 32 bytes of data (where xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx represents the valid IP address for MACHINENAME.)

Note: Resolving this issue by using the IP address instead of the <MACHINENAME> may indicate that the Domain Name System (DNS) on your network is not functioning properly. Using the IP address should be a temporary solution, as it could negatively affect the performance for network-based applications and services, including those outside of the CS Professional Suite. This issue should be addressed promptly by your qualified IT professional.

For database server machines that have Trend Micro-Worry Free Business Security installed (after installing Accounting CS)

  1. Choose Start > Control Panel and select Programs and Features to uninstall the Accounting CS Shared Files, and the Accounting CS application, if it was installed on the server in Step 3 of the installation procedure.
  2. Restart the Accounting CS installation process while present at the SQL server.
  3. In Step 2, choose the option to Install a new instance of Microsoft SQL Server Express Edition, and then when prompted, select a new instance name.
  4. Uninstall and reinstall the Desktop Setup process on all workstations.
  5. Restore the Accounting CS database to the new SQL instance using a backup previously created in Accounting CS, or via an application such as, Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio.

Note: Do not uninstall Trend Micro Worry-Free Business Security.

When third-party applications or services interfere with SQL Server database connectivity

  1. Restart the workstation in Safe Mode with Networking and retest to see if this issue recurs in this state.
  2. If Accounting CS opens without any issues, disable all non-Microsoft services, and then start items using MSCONFIG.EXE.
  3. Enable a small number of items at a time, and then retest until the specific item that is causing the interference is identified.
  4. Disable and/or uninstall the application, service, or startup item that is causing the issue.

Verify the settings for the SQL instance in Microsoft SQL Management Studio

Note: Microsoft SQL Management Studio is Microsoft's application for managing and maintaining SQL instances. To complete the following steps, you are required to have the appropriate version of Management Studio for your SQL instance installed on the database's server, as well as a working knowledge of this utility. Please contact your qualified IT professional if you need assistance.

Authentication Mode
  1. After connecting to the appropriate database instance in Microsoft SQL Management Studio, right-click the instance name, and choose Properties.
  2. Click Security and verify that the SQL Server and Windows Authentication Mode is checkbox is marked.
Database Owner
  1. Open Microsoft SQL Management Studio on the SQL server and connect to your SQL Server instance.
  2. Expand the Security folder, and then the Logins folder to verify that the CreativeSolutionsPracticeCSDatabaseOwner is listed.

    Note: Even though you are running the Accounting CS application, the correct Login name reference is Practice CS.

  3. If CreativeSolutionsPracticeCSDatabaseOwner is not listed, verify that your database instance is set to SQL Server and Windows Authentication Mode (refer to the Authentication Mode procedures above), and then reinstall the application on the server. During Step 2 of the installation, select your existing instance of SQL to create the Login.

Verify that Microsoft data compression and encryption is disabled for SQL files

The SQL database consists of the ACS_0_FIRM.mdf and ACS_0_FIRM.ldf files, that are by default installed to the X:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server folder on the server (where X:\ represents the server's hard drive). These files cannot be compressed or encrypted. In Windows Explorer, compressed folders/files appear in blue, and encrypted folders/files appear in green. Follow these steps to turn off compression and/or encryption.

  1. Right-click the Program Files or Program Files (x86) folder on the server, and choose Properties.
  2. On the General tab, click the Advanced button and clear the options to Compress contents to save disk space and/or Encrypt contents to secure data.

When Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0 is installed on the workstation

We have found that, in some circumstances, Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0 prevents workstations from connecting to the SQL Server. Additionally, Symantec—as of January 11, 2015—no longer supports this version of Symantec Endpoint Protection. We recommend that you uninstall or update Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0 on the workstation and retest.

Still receiving errors?

The items above represent the known issues and solutions to fix these errors. If you are still receiving errors when connecting to the SQL server after troubleshooting and applying the appropriate fixes, we recommend that you test SQL connectivity outside of the CS Professional Suite application. The following steps use the built-in Microsoft Windows tools (independent of Accounting CS) to test connectivity between your workstation and the SQL Server.

Create an ODBC connection

  1. At the workstation, choose Start > Control Panel.
  2. Select Administrative Tools, and then Data Sources (ODBC)
  3. Click Add.
  4. Choose SQL Server, and then click Finish.
  5. Enter a Name and Description (anything will do), and then enter the Server\Instance name of the SQL instance used by Accounting CS (for example, ServerName\CREATIVESOLUTION).
  6. Click Next through the remaining screens in the Setup wizard, and then click Finish.

    Note: Another screen should display ODBC MS SQL Server Setup.

  7. Click the Test Data Source button. If the connection to the SQL server is successful, you are prompted with a message.
  8. Close all the open screens and close the Administrative Tools utility.

Failure in the ODBC connection test indicates that the Microsoft Windows workstation could not connect to the Microsoft SQL Server. While this connectivity issue may occur only when running the Accounting CS application, the cause indicates that there is an environmental problem outside of the application. For further assistance in troubleshooting this issue on your firm's computers, contact a qualified IT professional who is proficient with SQL Server and your network. When the issue is resolved and the ODBC connection test is successful, the CS Professional Suite applications should also connect and operate normally in your environment.

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