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Top Five Tips for Troubleshooting Generic SQL Error Messages in Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011

When working with Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, you may occasionally see an error message that says “A SQL Server error occurred.  Try this action again.  If the problem continues, check the Microsoft Dynamics CRM Community for solutions or contact your organization’s Microsoft Dynamics CRM Administrator.”

When you get these error messages, you will want to focus your troubleshooting on the database level.  The following are five of the most common causes of these SQL errors, and good things to check when troubleshooting these types of issues:

1.  Check the event log on both CRM and SQL servers.  The event log will typically give you a more detailed error message that will help you troubleshoot the issue more precisely.

2.  Check the SQL server–are you low on disk space on the SQL server, or are there possibly limits to how much your Microsoft CRM database (*_MSCRM) can grow?

Even if you are on CRM online, this may be applicable–at one time I received generic SQL errors with CRM Online, and it turned out there was a limit on the amount of growth on our database at the Microsoft hosting center.  Call Microsoft support if this is the case.

3.  Increase the OLEDBTIMEOUT registry setting (or create it if it doesn’t exist).  See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/918609 for more details.

4.  Are there any unsupported database hacks like triggers that are running on the base tables, or are there any integration processes reading or writing to CRM that could be creating database locks?  These are the kind of things that can create generic errors in CRM, especially if they are “unsupported.”

5.  Are there any big/complex reports being run at the time you got the errors, or reports reading from CRM views or tables without “with (nolock)?”  These can cause database locks and result in SQL errors in CRM.

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