SQL 2016 RC2 setup upgrade fails when default backup directory is a network share
While upgrading instances SQL Server Setup can throw an error of "Updating permission setting for folder '\......' failed. The folder permission setting were supposed to be set to '...)'. This is because it's trying to set permissions on a network share.
It is extremely common for environments to backup to network shares; a backup on the local server is worthless if the server fails.
The option provided by Setup upon encountering the error is to either Retry (which will never work) or "click 'Cancel to cancel this action and continue setup.' This fails the database engine upgrade unnecessarily.
Once this has failed the database instance remains on the old version AND CAN NO LONGER BE UPGRADED. Further attempts to reboot, set a new local backup path, and then restart the upgrade result in an error message that there are "no features left to upgrade".
- The solution
Add a pre-check inside Setup before the upgrade begins, or have Setup not attempt to change permissions on a network share, or have Setup swallow the exception, or have Setup show a warning rather than a failure. This problem is not critical enough to induce a failure.
- Why the issue matters
When this fails it leaves the database engine in a state where it cannot be upgraded. It's a failure that can easily be identified by Setup (don't ask DBAs to do this, we already have a million things to check) and can easily be avoided.
- Potential concerns
I can't think of a case where it would be beneficial to modify this in a network share and fail if it was not possible. If SQL Server does not already have permissions to that share then default backups will fail anyway.
Cody Konior commented
This issue sucks and has caused many an in-place upgrade to fail. Having to alter the backup location of every instance to a local folder, then back again after upgrade, is a PITA.