SQL SERVER – Unable to Start SQL Browser

My laptop is exposed to the internet and I have a passion to learn new software. Due to this, sometimes, I download some random software (unknowingly malware) on my machine and end up in infecting my laptop with a virus. These are never intentional. I think I have written earlier that I use a virtual machine for all such fancy stuff so that I am not losing any data. I have formatted my virtual machine endless times. This gives me the opportunity to learn by trying different things with confidence.

One fine day, I was unable to start SQL Browser service on the virtual machine. When I start, it goes to “Started” and back to “Stopped” automatically. I looked into Application Event Logs and found below error

Log Name:      Application
Source:        SQLBrowser
Date:          25-Dec-15 6:26:38 AM
Event ID:      20
Task Category: None
Level:         Information
Keywords:      Classic
User:          N/A
Computer:      PINALVM1.sqlauthority.com
The SQL Server Browser is closing. 
There are no instances of SQL Server or SQL Server Analysis Services.

The message was not showing me correct information because my machine had SQL Server running and I was able to connect as well. As per the documentation, I can start the SQLBrowser in console mode with -c switch. On my machine SQLBrowser.exe is in “C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Shared” folder.

Here is the text of above run

C:\WINDOWS\system32>"C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft SQL Server\90\Shared\sqlbrowser.exe" -c
SQLBrowser: starting up in console mode
SQLBrowser: Both SSRP and OLAP redirection services are disabled. Shutting down browser service

SSRP = SQL Server Resolution Protocol.

I started troubleshooting and used one of my favorite troubleshooting tool called Process Monitor. I downloaded and captured the process monitor while trying to start from command prompt. To avoid the noise, I added a filter as below

I also removed all “SUCCESS” entries to avoid further noise. Searched for SSRP and found below entries

SQLbrowser was looking for below two registry keys

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\90\SQL Browser\AnalysisServiceListener

HKLM\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\90\SQL Browser\SsrpListener

On this virtual machine the keys were missing!!! I created as below

And bingo!!! I was able to start SQL Browser from command prompt

SQLBrowser: starting up in console mode
SQLBrowser: starting up SSRP redirection service
SQLBrowser is successfully listening on ::[1434]
SQLBrowser is successfully listening on[1434]
[10020]: Waiting for next request...
[10468]: Waiting for next request...
[11292]: Waiting for next request...
[1628]: Waiting for next request...
[10020]: Received request...
[10468]: Received request...
[11292]: Received request...
SQLBrowser: starting up OLAP redirection service
[1628]: Received request...
[10020]: Waiting for next request...
[10468]: Waiting for next request...
[11292]: Waiting for next request...
[1628]: Waiting for next request...

Stopped via Ctrl + C and then started via configuration manager and started fine. Then I played with the values of registry keys and changed between 1 and 0 to see what happens. If both are missing or set to 0 then we would get an error. I think each one of them is for the SQL Server Engine and Analysis Service.

Have you ever done any troubleshooting using a process monitor? This is a powerful tool which I had learnt in my stint at Microsoft years back. Do let me know how you have used the process monitor on your servers for troubleshooting?

Reference: Pinal Dave (https://blog.sqlauthority.com)

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