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I've been tasked with resolving the following error that's appearing in our SQL Logs every few minutes.

Login failed for user 'domain\workflowxxx-svc. Reason: 'Failed to open explicitly specified database 'DB_Name'.[Client: IP address of WFE Server] Error: 18456 Severity 14, State 38.

I've googled the error but the solutions all seem to need me to interrogate the DB using SQL or make it a member of the Farm Administrators Group.

This is a SharePoint SQL Server and I'm pretty sure doing that is not encouraged and can leave you unsupported if you try.

Adding it to the Farm Administrators group seems like Overkill to me.

I've checked the Account has permissions to the SQL Server and I think it does but I'm no SQL permissions expert.

Is there a way I can determine what is causing this without having to run SQL Queries against the DB ?

  • what's the current account permission on SQL server and On the farm? – Mohamed El-Qassas MVP Oct 12 '17 at 14:14
  • what is the purpose of this account domain\workflowxxx-svc? is it running any service in SharePoint? Which Database it is trying to access, Content or Service or config? did you check the permission of the Service account on that DB, what permission level it has? – Waqas Sarwar MVP Oct 12 '17 at 14:30
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If the account is attempting to access a Content Database, you would assign permission via PowerShell:

$db = Get-SPContentDatabase DbName
$db.GrantOwnerAccessToDatabaseAccount("domain\workflowxxx-svc")

For Service Application databases, you'd simply assign permission via Central Admin -> Manage Service Applications on the particular Service Application.

  • Thanks Everyone - your answers all pointed me in the right direction. Instead of checking if the DB would allow the account to connect I checked the Account had access - Lo and behold it didn't. – Dan Oct 13 '17 at 11:23

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