Failed to create the SharePoint Server 2013 configuration database

With the recent release of SharePoint Server 2013 Preview and the excitement for evaluating the product, I came across an issue during the installation process. The problem was that as part of installation the specified account failed to create the configuration database when SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard was run after successful installation of SharePoint Server 2013 binaries.

In addition to the software preview release there is a good deployment guide for SharePoint 2013 Preview outlining the concepts, pre requisites and step by step installation & configuration instructions to help you to get set up. However, the issue is around the error in documentation on page 20 of the guide covering Initial deployment of administrative and service accounts in SharePoint Server 2013 Preview together with required permissions.

The accounts used for our SharePoint Server 2013 preview installation were:

  • SQL Server Service Account
  • SharePoint Setup Account
  • SharePoint Server Farm Account

The specific issue was with the SharePoint setup account which was configured as per the screenshot below taken from the deployment guide. I have highlighted the permission that caused the error as described above.

Now I know what the experienced SharePoint Administrators and/or SharePoint DBAs be thinking on which SQL Server server-level roles to use based on previous versions of SharePoint installations! But this post is also reaching out to the audience who maybe new to SharePoint and just want the SharePoint product installed by following the instructions in the guide.

It is worth explaining here the use of SQL Server server-level roles that play the part in handling database access from SharePoint. In particular the following SQL Server server-level roles affecting SharePoint are described below.

Members of the securityadmin fixed server role manage logins and their properties. They can GRANT, DENY, and REVOKE server-level permissions. They can also GRANT, DENY, and REVOKE database-level permissions if they have access to a database. Additionally, they can reset passwords for SQL Server logins.

Members of the dbcreator fixed server role can create, alter, drop, and restore any database.

Members of the serveradmin fixed server role can change server-wide configuration options and shut down the server.

For further information on SQL Server server-level roles you can ask your Database Administrator or access the MSDN page. It should be noted that serveradmin role cannot manage changes to databases and security.

So to resolve the permissions issue with SharePoint setup account, the serveradmin role was deselected and only dbcreator & securityadmin SQL Server server-level roles were selected within SQL Server Management Studio login configuration area. The SharePoint Product Configuration wizard was re run and completed successfully with configuration and SharePoint Admin content databases created.

This post first appeared here:

Chirag is an Independent Consultant at Patel Consulting, BCS Chartered IT Professional, TOGAF Certified Architect, Microsoft Certified Solution Expert (Productivity, Data Management and Analytics) and Microsoft Service Adoption specialist based in London, UK with more than 20 years of industry experience. He works with a wide variety of clients in many sectors, designing and implementing business collaboration, data and information management solutions and services based on SharePoint and Office 365 technologies to create business value for both themselves and their customers, including UK Microsoft Gold Partners with deployment, upgrade and migration services delivery. Chirag is an active SharePoint community participant, frequent speaker at local and international events including SharePoint Saturdays (London, Cambridge, Brussels, Paris, Madrid, Barcelona, UK, EMEA, India) and Collab365. In 2011, for his valuable contributions to Microsoft TechNet forums he received a Microsoft Community Contributor Award. In his little spare time he enjoys cycling, cricket and participating in Charity bike rides and Duathlons. You can follow Chirag on Twitter at @techChirag and find him online at

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Posted in SharePoint, SQL Server
2 comments on “Failed to create the SharePoint Server 2013 configuration database
  1. […] article was originally posted here, on the Chirag Patel blog. .gplus #___plusone_0, .gplus #___plusone_1,.gplus #___plusone_2, […]

  2. […] & Configuration: Configuration database failed to create due to SQL server role error in the […]

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