Wednesday, June 8, 2011

SQL Server Authentication enabling using Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Management Studio

Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio provides integrated environment for accessing, configuring, managing, administering and developing all components of SQL Server. There you can see two authentication modes called "Windows Authentication" and "SQL Server Authentication". The Windows authentication mode only allows you to login/connect to SQL Server with Windows authentication.

If you install the Microsoft SQL Server using Windows Authentication mode, the "sa" account is disabled by default. So if you plan to use SQL Server Authentication, you have to enable the "sa" account. This tutorial tells you how to enable the "sa" account and there you must remember that the SQL Server service needs to restart to make this change effective.

1. First, Login to the SQL Server Management Studio using Windows Authentication. Right-click on the database instance, and go to Properties.

2. Then on Properties page, click on Security and select SQL Server and Windows Authentication mode, and click on OK to close the Server Properties page.

3. Now you will get dialog box saying that you should restart your SQL Server to take the changes take effect. Is is not done yet, you have to done one more thing to enable the "sa" login.

4. Now expand Security folder and go to Logins. You can see the "sa" account is disabled when you install SQL Server using Windows Authentication mode.

5. Then right-click on the "sa" account and go to Login Properties. There you can set a password for the "sa" account.

6. Click on the Status page. There you can see the "sa" account is disabled by default. Click on the Enabled button to enable it. Then click on Ok to close the "sa" Login Properties.

Now "sa" account is enabled and you can login to the SQL instance using the "sa" account after restarting the SQL Server.


  1. @ Achini,
    Thanks for your comment nangi...

  2. Well Job...!!!

    Really Nice Article...!!!!

  3. Thank you so much, very useful article

  4. i have done this one .. but while again am entering the SQL server authentication username and password field is empty.. again it won't entering.. What i have to do reply please..

  5. Lost an entire weekend trying to get a test SQL server to work. This was the first site that enabled me to remote. Thank you for taking the time to make this available!

  6. Thanks a lot. Its helped me :)

  7. TITLE: Connect to Server

    Cannot connect to NITESH-PC\SQLEXPRESS.


    Property Login was not set. (Microsoft.SqlServer.ConnectionInfo)

    getting this error.After doing the above activity still not able to login in SQL Server Authentication.Kindly help me..

  8. this is great, i was searching for this info to train my students and it really worked!...
    thank you...
    Zanzibar University - Dept. of BIT ............


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