Error message when you try to install a SQL Server 2005 service pack: "SQL Server Setup failed to modify security permissions on file Drive:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.x\MSSQL\Data\ for user SYSTEM"

Extended support for SQL Server 2005 ended on April 12, 2016

If you are still running SQL Server 2005, you will no longer receive security updates and technical support. We recommend upgrading to SQL Server 2014 and Azure SQL Database to achieve breakthrough performance, maintain security and compliance, and optimize your data platform infrastructure. Learn more about the options for upgrading from SQL Server 2005 to a supported version here.

Bug #: 427770 (SQLBUDT)
SYMPTOMS
When you try to install a SQL Server 2005 service pack, you may receive the following error message:
Error 29506.
SQL Server Setup failed to modify security permissions on file Drive:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.x\MSSQL\Data\ for user SYSTEM. To proceed, verify that the account and domain running SQL Server Setup exist, that the account running SQL Server Setup has administrator privileges, and that exists on the destination drive.
Note A SQL Server service pack refers to SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 1 (SP1) and later service packs.
CAUSE
This problem occurs because one or more data files exist that do not have the required permissions. By default, the Full Control permission of the Administrators group is granted to the data file when you create a database. If the permission of this group is removed from the data file, the SQL Server 2005 service pack setup will fail.
RESOLUTION
To resolve this problem, grant the Full Control permission to the Administrators group on all data files and on the Data folder. To grant the Full Control permission to the data files, follow these steps:
  1. Locate the folder that contains the data files. By default, these files are located in the following folder:
    C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1\MSSQL\Data\
  2. Right-click the data file that has no required permissions for the Administrators group, and then click Properties.
  3. If the Administrators group is not in the Group or user names list, click Add, type Administrators, and then click OK.
  4. Click Administrators in the Group or user names list, and then click to select the Allow check box for the Full Control item in the Permissions for Administrators list.
Note If the files in the Data folder have an orphan owner, you have to take ownership of the files and then grant the Full Control permission to the files. We recommend that you do not change the default permissions for the data files.
STATUS
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.
Properties

Article ID: 916766 - Last Review: 10/17/2006 17:48:04 - Revision: 3.1

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Standard Edition, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Enterprise Edition, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express Edition, Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition

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