Technical FAQs

Ask a Question

Unable to start SQL Server Agent

Unable to start SQL Server Agent. Produces the following error when trying to start it from the services control panel.
"The SQL Server Agent (MSSQLSERVER) service on Local Computer started and then stopped.  Some services stop automatically if they have no work to do, for example, the Performance Logs and Alerts service."

Product Line
Struxureware Power Monitoring
Power Monitoring Expert
ION Enterprise

SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008 R2, SQL Server 2012, SQL Server 2014

There was no such directory present on the machine and also the SQLAgent.out log file did not exist.

*Warning: This article contains information about editing the registry. Improper changes to the registry can permanently damage the operating system. Always backup the registry before making any changes.*

Manually try to start SQL Server Agent from a command prompt using the following command:

Check the contents of the SQLAgent.out file produced by this command. 
Should contain an message as per below:

Unable to rename C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL\LOG\SQLAGENT.OUT to C:\ProgramFiles\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL\LOG\SQLAGENT.1
(reason: The system cannot find the path specified)
2014-08-24 10:10:31 - ! [241] Startup error: Unable to initialize error reporting system (reason: The system cannot find the path specified)
2014-08-24 10:10:31 - ? [098] SQLServerAgent terminated (normally)

Check the value of key ErrorLogFile in the following registry key.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\SQLServerAgent

Change the value in the ErrorLogFile key to reflect the correct location of the SQL log folder.
After making the change and saving, restart the SQL Server Agent from the services control panel.

Was this helpful?
What can we do to improve the information ?