SQL client alias not working

Written on March 10, 2021

This morning I was trying to create a SQL client alias. An application assumes my local SQL Server instance is named ‘SQLEXPRESS’ but I’ve installed SQL Server 2019 Developer Edition (which installs as the default instance).

I opened SQL Server 2019 Configuration Manager and created an alias.. It didn’t work. I can never remember whether to use the ‘32bit’ configuration or the other one! I tried both, still no success.

I checked Google to see I was doing it right. Yep, tried this and still no luck.

Let’s double-check how my local instance is configured..

SQL Server Configuration Manager, showing Protocols node

Whoops! Aliases can only use ‘Named Pipes’ or ‘TCP/IP’ and both of those protocols are disabled.

Let’s enable TCP/IP

Enable TCP/IP protocol

And enable binding to 1433 on localhost for IPv4 and IPv6. I won’t bother with the other IP addresses as I’m not planning to share this instance externally.

Enable IP Addresses

Restart the SQL service and we’re all good.

Oh.. and for my own reference, the ‘32bit’ client alias did the trick for SSMS, but for a .NET application I needed also add a non-32bit alias too.

Categories: SQL