Troubleshooting: Windows 11 SQL Server Installation Error-Wait on the Database Engine recovery handle failed. Check the SQL Server error log for potential causes

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Question: When I install SQL Server on Windows 11, there is an error message: Wait on the Database Engine recovery handle failed. Check the SQL Server error log for potential cause.
After I click ‘OK’ on the error, the installation is completed with Database Engine Services and SQL Server Replication failures. The SQL Server Service will not start. Why?

Version: 1.8 / 1.9 / 2.0

Possible Reason:

On Windows 11, some storage devices and device drivers will expose a disk sector size larger than 4 KB. In this case, SQL Server unable to start due to unsupported file system as SQL Server currently supports sector storage sizes of 512 bytes and 4 KB.


Add a registry key to force the sector size to be emulated as 4 KB in size.

1) Uninstall/Remove all the existing SQL Server from Control Panel.

2) To add the ForcedPhysicalSectorSizeInBytes registry key, you may use Command Prompt (Method a) OR use the Registry Editor (Method b).

Before that, please backup the registry.
(refer link for how to backup registry

Method a: Use Command Prompt

a i) Run the Command Prompt as Administrator.

a ii) Copy and paste the following command, and press Enter

REG ADD "HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\stornvme\Parameters\Device" /v "ForcedPhysicalSectorSizeInBytes" /t REG_MULTI_SZ /d "* 4095" /f

a iii) Then restart the computer.

Method b: Use Registry Editor

b i) Navigate to Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\stornvme\Parameters\Device.

b ii) On the Edit menu, point to New, and then select Multi-String value. Name it ForcedPhysicalSectorSizeInBytes.

b iii) Modify the new value, type in * 4095. Click OK and close the Registry editor.

b iv) Then restart the computer.

3) Now, you may reinstall SQL Server. It is recommended to install SQL Server 2017 and above for Windows 11.

To download Microsoft SQL Server 2019 Express edition, please click the following link:

4) Under the Server Configuration page, make sure Startup Type for SQL Server Database Engine is Manual or Disabled.

5) The installation should success now.

6) After that, go to SQL Server Configuration Manager, go to SQL Server Network Configuration > Protocols for A2006 (choose the instance name that you installed just now), right click on TCP/IP and select Enable.

7) Go to SQL Server Services, right click on SQL Server (A2006) > Properties > Service, change the Start Mode to Automatic, then click on Apply and OK.

8) Right click on SQL instance and click on Start to start the services.

Note: Please seek assistance from your software dealer if the problem persists after performing the suggested steps.

By: Jodie 220901, Lay Swan 220908, P220926

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