SQL server failed to start the system cannot find the path specified


Recently one of our SQL server unable to start it. The problem with the storage LUNs.



Things you have to do: When you get this above message while starting SQL server service.

Check the event viewer both system and application log. There you will know the exact problem.



Error: SQL server failed to start the system cannot find the path specified

First check the drives and drive letters in my computer. Then verify the SQL server installed drive is available in your server.

Go to Start –> All programs –> Microsoft SQL server 2008 –> configuration tools –> SQL server configuration manager –> Right click the SQL server –> Properties –> Advanced –> Check the install path and startup parameters.


In my case I could not see the Installation drive in my server. The drives (LUN) that’s not connected properly to the server and we went to the storage side and connected the drive (LUN) and it works as expected.

Hope this would help someone.

I’m currently working as a SQL server DBA in one of the top MNC. I’m passionate about SQL Server And I’m specialized in Administration and Performance tuning. I’m an active member of SQL server Central and MSDN forum. I also write articles in SQL server Central. For more Click here


  • Michael?

    SQL server installed completely with “Database Engine Service” failed as a result of this error of “system cannot find specified path”.
    Please someone should kindly help me
    I need help badly

    • Muthukkumaran Kaliyamoorthy

      Hi Michael,
      For any installation error you have to check text file in the setup booststrap: — C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\100\Setup Bootstrap\Log.
      This will give you more information.

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