Some nodes are not updated as expected when you apply Service Pack 3 or a post-Service Pack 3 update in a SQL Server 2005 cluster that is based on Windows Server 2008 R2 failover clustering


Consider the following scenario:
  • You install a Microsoft SQL Server 2005 cluster in a Windows Server 2008 R2 multi-node cluster environment.
  • You upgrade the instance to SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 3 (SP3). Or, you apply a hotfix or a cumulative update that was released after SP3.
In this scenario, the Setup program reports "success" for all the nodes of the SQL Server 2005 cluster. However, all the nodes may not have been updated.

Note This problem occurs only when the system drive has less than 2 gigabytes (GB) of free disk space.


To work around this problem, manually check the version of the Sqlservr.exe file of the specific instance in the following folder on each node to make sure that the update has been applied on that node.
Drive:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.x\MSSQL\Binn
Note In this folder name, Drive represents the drive on which you installed SQL Server 2005. And, MSSQL.x represents the corresponding instance ID.

If you find that the binaries on the passive node are not updated, run the installer package of the service pack or the update together with the /passive command-line option.

For more information about the /passive command-line option, visit the following Microsoft Web site:

To update the binaries on the passive node, follow these steps:
  1. On the node that was not updated successfully, use the /passive command-line option to run the SQL Server 2005 SP3 installer package or to run a later version of the installer package. The service pack level of the node updates to SQL Server 2005 SP3 or to a later version after you run the installer package. For example, you can use the following command to install SQL Server 2005 SP3:

    SQLServer2005SP3-KB955706-x86-ENU.exe /passive
  2. Make sure that you apply any additional updates that are on the active node to the passive node in the same manner as you did in step 1.

    Note When you apply a hotfix on the passive node, you must use the /passive command-line option. After you apply the update, make sure that all the SQL Server failover cluster nodes for that instance are running the same service pack level.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section. We are currently investigating other methods of warning the users about this issue in the environments discussed in the "Symptoms" section.

Article ID: 973993 - Last Review: Aug 4, 2009 - Revision: 1