Problem generating SSPI Context with SQL 2000 and Windows 2000 Server SP3

Posted on 2004-11-12
Last Modified: 2012-05-05
When I installed SQL Server, I set the user that starts the SQL Server Service to the Local System account and specified that SQL 2000 should use Mixed Mode for authentication.  Under this setup, the SQL Server works fine using both windows authentication and sql server authentication.  

My problem started because I want to switch the service startup user to a domain user.  When I switch the startup user from LocalSystem to a domain account, SQL Server throws an error stating that it "Cannot Generate an SSPI Context".  Therefore I cannot login to the SQL Server using Windows Authentication.  If I use SQL Server authentication everything works normally.  Changing the startup account back to LocalSystem will allow full access to the SQL Server.  

We only have one domain so there are no Cross-domain communitcation issues.  The machines trying to connect to the SQL Server are Windows XP (SP1).  The domain user account I'm trying to use for service startup is a local administrator on the SQL Server and is in the System Administrators role in SQL Server.  

Any help would be appreciated.  
Question by:jecliver
    LVL 32

    Accepted Solution

    Check this MS Article:

    As a test, use this workaround and see if it works:

    To work around this problem, manually create a host entry for the IP address in the client computer

    If this does not solve the issue, look at:
    LVL 18

    Expert Comment

    have to given the domain account the approriate windows security settings and rights?
    LVL 32

    Expert Comment

    A couple more things to look at:  (a possibility)

    - or -  (I doubt it - your server *is* connected to the domain, isn't it?)


    Author Comment

    From everything I can see the server is set up to correctly process windows authentication requests.  I'm further convinced of this because when the server is set up with the LocalSystem account starting the SQL Service the SQL Server can generate the sspi context with no problems.

    In answer to ShogunWade's question, the user is a local administrator and in the SQL administrator role.  The domain user is also trusted for delegation.  

    I'm trying to work through the troubleshooting guide in and so far I'm compliant with everything in it.  

    I feel like this is some sort of permissions issue because it works when one user starts the service, but not the other, but I can't figure out how.  I don't know how many more permissions I can give the user!  
    LVL 32

    Expert Comment

    One more possibility, from

    Fully qualify the server name (e.g. Server.DomainName.Com)

    It has something to do with the way XP utilizes the IP protocol


    And one more:

    You may receive the following error message because of problems with Windows authentication:

    Cannot generate SSPI Context

    The following problems may cause authentication and security issues:
    •      Problems occur with NTLM authentication or with Kerberos authentication.
    •      The domain controller cannot be contacted because of connectivity issues.
    •      Problems occur with trust relationships across domains.


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