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Error: Unable to open database [LIMSdatabaseName] on [ServerName] via [ODBC Driver Name/Server Native Client] for SQL Server

Error Message(s):

Solutions: There are several possibilities permission issues for this error.


This points to an issue with the computer/server that hosts SQL Server and the database. Here are some things to check:
1. If the LIMS front-end (the Access part) is installed on the computer hosting the database, can that front-end LIMS successfully reach the database?  If so, then the issue is possibly a permission issue from the computer hosting the database. Check with your IT team to see if any changes were made to the server computer.

2. Try rebooting the computer that hosts the database. 

3. Were updates (to the operating system, new/updated antivirus software, etc.) recently done to the computer hosting the database?

4. This article has several helpful sleuthing tips when troubleshooting a SQL server error: https://nolongerset.com/troubleshooting-sql-server-connections/


The issue may be a permissions issue with either the SQL Server instance or the [LIMS] database. 

LIMS uses Windows Authentication to access SQL Server, which means the user’s Windows’ login name is provided to SQL Server for access. 

Some solutions to try:

  1. Verify that the employee’s Windows active directory name matches exactly what is added to the Users screen in the LIMS.
  2. Verify that the correct ODBC driver is being called (check to see what ODBC driver other users have listed).
  3. Delete the employee’s login on the LIMS Users screen on the Admin menu then add the login back. 
  4. If the [LIMS] database name and [ServerName] are correct, the issue may be that the employee does not have permissions to access the server. Have your IT folks verify that the user has proper permissions for the server and database. It may be beneficial to delete the user from the SQL permissions and re-add them.

    There are two things you can check in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). To access LIMS a user needs both a SQL Server login and access to the database.  When you add a user with the Users screen in the LIMS, the system should add the SQL Server login if it doesn’t already exist, then it
    will add the user to the database.

    To check that the SQL Server login exists for the user in SSMS, expand the Security folder under (not in) the Databases folder then expand the Logins folder and verify that the user exists. Next, expand the Databases folder,expand the [LIMS] database, expand the Security folder, expand the Users folder and verify the user exists. If the user exists, double-click the user permissions by select the Membership page and make sure the user is a member of asingle lims_* role.
  5. Take a copy of the LIMS front end (Access) from another computer that is working correctly and place the copy on the affected computer.
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