SQL services wont start due to incorrect drive letter after windows restore

Had a server crash, was successfully able to reinstall windows and restore the server SQL and all the necessary services were already installed.

Only problem the windows drives letters are wrong. So the services are pointed to the incorrect drive letter. I cant change the services in regedit or change the drive letter in disk management. Is there a way to do a repair in SQL add remove programs to associate's the necessary services with the correct drive letter?

Here's a example of the services Path to executable I:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\

only problem the actual drive letter is E:

Services that wont start SQL SERVER SQL SERVER AGENT SQL Server Analysis SQL Server Analysis Services SQL Server Integration Services SQL Server Reporting Services

  • 1
    If you reinstalled windows, why not reinstall SQL Server? Trying to manually repair SQL Server can bring up problems down the road. It is best to do fresh install of SQL Server and then restore your databases (both system and users).
    – user47078
    Jan 17, 2013 at 21:05

2 Answers 2


try subst command, maybe it'll help you ... kind of workaround though..


You can use 'Subst i: e:\' (at a cmd prompt) then you can get SQL to start, as suggested backup your data, remove SQL and re-install it with the correct path, restore your data. That will be the best for you long term.

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