Complete Solution on How to Restore SQL Master Database

Ashwani Tiwari | Modified: 2020-04-20T07:06:33+00:00 | SQL Server|

Here in this article we are going to understand about SQL Master database corruption. Along with this, we will also explain – How one can detect whether the master database is corrupted or not? and the step-by-step approach on how to restore SQL Master Database in SQL Server 2019, 2017, 2016 , 2014 , 2012 , 2008 / 2008 R2 , 2005 , 2000 .

The Master Database includes all the system-level information of a SQL Server system. It comprises instance-wide metadata like Endpoints, Logon accounts, System configuration settings, and Linked servers. In SQL Server, system objects are no longer saves in the master database; instead of this, they are saved in the Resource database. Besides, Master is the database that is accountable to record the presence of all other databases and the storage location of those database files. It records all the initialization information for MS SQL Server. Hence, if the master database is unavailable or inaccessible (because of any corruption or disaster that wipe off the disk where master database is stored) then, one cannot start the SQL Server.

How to Detect Master Database is Corrupt or Not?

The corruption in SQL Server database is very dangerous as it does not give any error message or notification regarding the corruption until users try to fetch the data. However, being a system admin, it is essential to determine the symptoms that indicate the corruption or damage in the master database, such as:

  • Segmentation faults or input/output errors
  • Failed to launch the Microsoft SQL server
  • Report creation by Database Consistency Checker Utility

In this article, we will go over a simple method to restore master database in SQL Server. Therefore, the users will know the exact way for how to repair corrupted SQL Server without losing any single bit of data. Actually, it is unusual to have the requirement of restoring the master database. However, in some conditions, this need may arise.

How to Restore SQL Master Database?

Restoring the master database of SQL Server is surprisingly easy if you keep an up-to-date copy of your database that comprises the system records. It is so because the system catalog incorporates important details about the SQL Server configuration.

Steps to Restore SQL Master Database are as follows;

The complete process to restore master database of SQL Server 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2008 / 2008 R2, 2005, 2000  is categorized into two major steps:-

Step 1. Set Microsoft SQL Server to Single User Mode

    • Log in to SQL server as an administrator.
    • Navigate to Administrative Tools >> Services. Hit a right-click on the service SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER) and click on Stop.
    • Hit double-click on SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER) to launch the Service Properties wizard
    • Click on General tab, and in Start parameters section, type: -c -m

Restore SQL Master Database

  • Hit Start button in General tab to set the server in single user mode. After that, click on OK to quit the dialog box.

Step 2. Stop the SQL Server Services

    • In the Services wizard, hit a right-click on service SQL Server Agent (MSSQLSERVER). Click on Stop.
    • In Services window, hit a right-click on service SQL Server Reporting (MSSQLSERVER) service. Click on Stop.

Restore SQL Master Database

Step 3. Restore SQL Master Database in SQL Server

Next, to restore full database backup of the master, run the following RESTORE DATABASE Transact-SQL query:


The REPLACE option orders SQL Server to restore the specified database even if a database of the same name exists already. If there is an existing database, it will be deleted.

Note: In single-user mode, we recommend that execute the RESTORE DATABASE statement in sqlcmd utility.

Once the master database is restored successfully, the instance of SQL Server will shut down and it will terminate the sqlcmd process. So, before restarting the server instance, you need to remove the single-user startup parameter.

Here is How to Set Microsoft SQL Server to Multi-User Mode

  • Log in to SQL server as an administrator
  • Navigate to Administrative Tools >> Services. Hit right-click on following services, and click on Start:
    • SQL Server (MSSQLSERVER)
    • SQL Server Agent (MSSQLSERVER)
    • SQL Server Reporting Services (MSSQLSERVER)

Quick and Safe Approach to Restore SQL Master Database

SysTools MDF Recovery Tool is an advance way to restore corrupt master database of SQL Server. One can also fix the damaged MDF (Primary database file) & NDF (Secondary database file) of any size.  It provides two scanning options to repair SQL Master Database i.e., Quick and Advanced Scan.

Download Now Purchase Now

Using this, one can recover Triggers, Rules, Functions, Tables, and Stored Procedures from SQL Server files. With the help of this utility, one can export the restored file in Live SQL Server Database or as SQL Server Compatible Scripts. The tool restore master database file of SQL Server  2019, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2008 / 2008 R2, 2005, 2000.

Final Verdict

Master database is extremely important to operate the SQL server, as it holds all the primary configuration details of the SQL Server database. Sometimes when this database gets corrupted, users attempt to restore it. However, executing this task is not that much easy as it appears to be. Consequently, users search for how to restore SQL master database. In this post, we have focused on the same query and disclosed some easy solutions for the same.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I rebuild master database in SQL Server?

You can use the rebuild Wizard (Rebuildm.exe) which is located in the default user directory:
\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\80\Tools\BINN

Can I recover deleted SQL Server database objects?

Yes, you can use the SQL repair tool to recover deleted tables, stored procedures, functions and other database objects.

Comments are closed.

Exclusive Offers & Deals, Grab it Now!

Systool Offer
Live Chat