How to find out BINN folder path using WMI

A reply to a Tweet on #sqlhelp prompted me to look this up. The question was on finding out the SQL Server BINN folder path. This can be done using WMI in the following manner for SQL Server 2008:

strComputer = "."

Set objWMIService = GetObject("winmgmts:\\" & strComputer & "\root\Microsoft\SqlServer\ComputerManagement10")

Set colItems = objWMIService.ExecQuery( _

"SELECT * FROM SqlService WHERE SQLServiceType = 1 and ServiceName = 'MSSQLSERVER'",,48)

For Each objItem in colItems

Wscript.Echo "-----------------------------------"

Wscript.Echo "SqlService instance"

Wscript.Echo "-----------------------------------"

Wscript.Echo "BinaryPath: " & MID(objItem.BinaryPath,1,InStr(objItem.BinaryPath,"sqlservr.exe")-1)


The SQL Server 2008/R2 WMI namespace has visibility for SQL Server 2005 also. So the above snippet of code can be used to retrieve the BINN path (PathName property contains the fully qualified path to the service binary file that implements the service) for the SQL instance. You can change the SQLServiceType to a different value to get the Binary Path folder for other services as well. The value is the above code is set to 1 for the Database Engine. The ServiceName parameter can be used to filter down the results.

For a named instance, you would need to change the service name to MSSQL$INSTA if your instance is called INSTA.

The same is possible through the much talked about Powershell as well.

Other ways to do this would be to use the xp_instance_regread XSP which is not recommended as it is an undocumented command. An example is show here.

Thanks to @afernandez for pointing out another way through a CLR TVF.


WMI Script for Changing SQL Server 2000 and 2005 passwords

Our domain security policy requires us to change our Domain Account passwords every once in a while. This security feature is a good practice but the change of password requires me to change my SQL Server component startup accounts to be changed also as most of them run under my Domain Account.

Tired of accomplishing this task which requires me to type out my user name and password (twice for the reconfirmation 🙂 )  brought forward the need for automating this task. Once I did this, I thought it would be prudent for me to share the same with the SQL community. WMI is quite powerful and a number of tasks can be achieved through it which you shall see in my future blog posts. I have created a category in my blog completely for WMI.

Addition: October 24th, 2011

If you are using SQL Server 2008 R2, then you need to have this fix applied so that SetServiceAccount can work:

2397020 FIX: “Access is denied. [0x80070005]” error message occurs in SSCM when you try to change the password of an account of SQL Server 2008 R2 in Windows Vista or in a later version of Windows;EN-US;2397020

If you use SetServiceAccount to change the password, then this will result in a SQL Server service restart. The script provided on the Technet Gallery is for changing both the service account and the password. If only the password needs to be changed for the service account, then use SetServiceAccountPassword. This will change the password and will not automatically restart your SQL Server service.

Download the file: pwdchange file and change the name to pwdchange.vbs. This can be executed from command prompt using the following command (provided you have Windows Script Host which almost all Windows Servers have):

cscript pwdchange.vbs

The script has comments written to help you understand the same. This script makes use of the following namespaces:

\root\Microsoft\SqlServer\ComputerManagement (SQL Server 2005)

\root\CIMV2 (SQL Server 2000)

The reason I do not use SQL Server 2000 WMI namespace as it is not installed by default with a SQL Server 2000 default installation. It has to be installed separately. So, I decided to use CIMV2 which has Win32_Service for achieving the same purpose. In the script you would have to provide the following details:

strAccount1 = “Account1” ‘ For
strAccount2 = “Account2” ‘ For domain\alias naming convention
strAccount3 = “Account1” ‘ To cover any other naming convention
strAlias = “Alias” ‘ Provide the alias
strDomain = “DomainName” ‘ Provide the domain name
strPassword = “Set Password Here” ‘ Put the new password here