Home SQL Protocol Named Pipes is disabled but still periodically getting error "Named Pipes Provider error: 40 - Could not open a connection to SQL Server"
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SQL Protocol Named Pipes is disabled but still periodically getting error "Named Pipes Provider error: 40 - Could not open a connection to SQL Server"

user44987 Published in September 19, 2018, 9:08 am

I am using a default connection string in a .NET application , not specifying any protocol e.g

<add name="TestConn" connectionString="Data Source=;Initial Catalog=testDB;MultipleActiveResultSets=True;Persist Security Info=False;User ID=sa;Password=1234; " providerName="System.Data.SqlClient" />

Every so often the error below is logged from the application,

"A network-related or instance-specific error occurred while establishing a connection to SQL Server. The server was not found or was not accessible. Verify that the instance name is correct and that SQL Server is configured to allow remote connections. (provider: Named Pipes Provider error: 40 - Could not open a connection to SQL Server)"

But on the next connection attempt it continues working as normal connecting successfully. (assuming via TCP)

In SQL Server Configuration Manager under SQL Server Network Configuration Named Pipes is disabled, Shared Memory and TCP/IP are enabled. So why is it even attempting to connect using named pipes ??

The application and SQL server are not on the same machine and i am using the IP address so shared memory shouldnt be used either , so from what i can tell connections should be defaulting to TCP

I dont want to just specify the port in the connection string e.g Data Source=,1433 or Data Source=tcp:;

I am trying to understand why its making these attempts?

Am using SQL Server 2008 R2 and a .NET 3.5 console application

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  • 1
    For a non-local connection SqlClient tries TCP first then if that fail it tries NP, only then will if fail (with the error from the NP provider) so this may actually be a symptom of the initial TCP attempt failing. – Alex K. Apr 17 at 12:13
  • even if NP is disabled? should it not fail with a TCP error if it cant connect ? – Rachael M Apr 17 at 13:02
  • Was the sql service restarted after NP was disabled? – DEEPAK LAKHOTIA Apr 22 at 8:27

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