Don’t Forget Those Active Directory Objects

A couple of months back, I set up a SQL Server failover cluster for a customer.  The customer thought everything was prepared for installation, but we missed a couple of early steps, and when I went to install SQL Server, I ran into some issues around missing Active Directory objects.

Two Active Directory Computer objects are needed before installation can proceed:  one with the name of the Windows Failover Cluster itself, and one with the name of the SQL Server virtual instance to which users will connect.  Both of these computer objects need IP addresses and NetBIOS names in order to support running the cluster.  For simplicity’s sake, I’ll call the Windows Failover Cluster object WFC and the SQL Server virtual instance SS.  As far as permissions goes, it might be a good idea to go to the security permissions for WFC and give it Full Control over SS; this will make installation easier and allow the installer to set correct permissions.

In our case, neither object was created correctly and my installer account did not have Active Directory permissions.  Thus, when I got to the end of installation, I received the following error:

Cluster network name resource ‘SQL Network Name (SS)’ failed to create its associated computer object in domain ‘MYDOMAIN’ during: Resource online. The text for the associated error code is: The object identifier does not represent a valid object.

Please work with your domain administrator to ensure that:
– The cluster identity WFC$’ has Create Computer Objects permissions. By default all computer objects are created in the same container as the cluster identity ‘WFC$’.
– The quota for computer objects has not been reached.
– If there is an existing computer object, verify the Cluster Identity WFC$’ has ‘Full Control’ permission to that computer object using the Active Directory Users and Computers tool.

Creating appropriate Computer objects, assigning them IP addresses and NetBIOS names, and granting WFC Full Control over SS solved the problems and allowed installation to run to completion successfully.

For additional information on setting up Active Directory objects for Windows Failover Clustering, there is a great Technet article.

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