Can’t Connect to Analysis Services – Invalid Connection Information

I have a new installation of SQL Server 2017, along with an instance of Analysis Services Tabular 2017. I tried to connect to the SSAS instance for the first time, and I was greeted with the following error:

“Invalid connection information to establish the server connection”

I was using SSMS 17.3 to connect to the instance, so I wasn’t doing anything wonky with connection strings. I tried the following, without any success:

  • repair the SSAS instance (when does a repair ever work?)
  • uninstall and re-install the SSAS instance
  • uninstalling SSMS 17.3 and installing a slightly older version (17.0)

Nothing worked. I got a similar error when I tried to create a new project in Visual Studio using an integrated workspace. However, I could create an SSAS project using a local workspace server. I could create a model and deploy it to the server. And I could connect with Power BI Desktop to the SSAS instance. The plot thickens. Turns out I’m not the only one either who ever encountered this error:

I took a quick look at Event Viewer, and there were a bunch of errors in there as well for the OLAP service. Of course with pretty error messages:

Googling for this kind of messages led to one forum thread where someone had locale issues. Note the 8192 number, which isn’t even featured in the list of locale identifiers. Anyway, I fired up SQL Server Profiler and ran a trace while I was trying to log into the SSAS server. An error popped up:

Device attached to the system not functioning


This really didn’t make any sense. However, in one of the Discover Begin/End events, the same number appeared again: 8192 (this time explicitly marked as locale identifier). Hmmm, I had problems with weird locales before. I dug into my system, and yes, the English (Belgium) locale was lingering around. I removed it from my system and lo and behold, I could log into SSAS with SSMS again. Morale of the story: if you get weird errors, make sure you have a normal locale on your machine because apparently the SQL Server client tools go bonkers.

(note: there are some references to the en-be locale: here, here and here)

Koen Verbeeck

Koen Verbeeck is a Microsoft Business Intelligence consultant at AE, helping clients to get insight in their data. Koen has a comprehensive knowledge of the SQL Server BI stack, with a particular love for Integration Services. He’s also a speaker at various conferences.

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