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Unable to connect to the PostgreSQL database when starting FTK

Created by: Brendan Bone
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Symptom: You get the error "Unable to connect to database requested" or a similar error message when starting FTK using the PostgreSQL database.

Cause: The causes can vary, so this will walk you through the usual troubleshooting process for PostgreSQL connection issues.

Possible Solutions:

  • Make sure the database drive isn't write-protected.  If it is, unblock it and reboot.  Also check the drive permissions to make sure you have full access.
  • Open the Services snap-in (services.msc) to see if the PostgreSQL service is "started".  The service may have one of the following names:
    • postgresql-x86-9.0
    • postgresql-x64-9.0
    • postgresql-x86-9.1
    • postgresql-x64-9.1
    • postgresql-x86-9.3
    • postgresql-x64-9.3
  • Make sure that the drives being used are formatted NTFS
  • If the PostgreSQL service isn't started, double-click on it, make sure the "Startup type" is set to Automatic, then click "Start".
  • If the service won't start, do the following:
    1. Open "regedit".
    2. Navigate to "HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\postgresql-x**-*.*".
    3. Check the "ImagePath".  It should look similar to the following:
      C:/Program Files/AccessData/PostgreSQL/bin/pg_ctl.exe runservice -N "postgresql-x64-9.1" -D "D:/pgdata" -w
      (Notes: The first underlined path is the location of PostgreSQL binaries.  The second underlined path is the location of PostgreSQL data.)
    4. If either of the underlined paths are pointing to an incorrect location, double-click "ImagePath" to edit the value, then modify it appropriately.
    5. Go back to "services.msc".
    6. Double-click the PostgreSQL service to open the service properties.
    7. Under the "Log On" tab, make sure it's either set to run under the Local System account (for one-box setups) or another account with Administrator rights (for multi-box setups or DPE).
    8. Start the service.
  • If the PostgreSQL service will still not start, there may be minor corruption, requiring the transaction logs be reset.
  • If the PostgreSQL service starts, but FTK doesn't connect or list any cases and/or all options are greyed out, you may need to repair the PostgreSQL junction links.
  • If the PostgreSQL starts then stops immediately, reboot the machine and see if it will start.
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Comments

  • Avatar
    nicole solander

    What if it is started and FTK still doesnt find the database? Then what??

  • Avatar
    Matt Smith

    I'm having a similar issue...even after resetting transaction logs.

  • Avatar
    Chris Jensen

    Have you checked the firewall or AV, these items often block communication to and from the database.

  • Avatar
    Troy Dolyniuk

    I am having the same error and have followed the instructions. My image path is similar to the one shown above in step 3 but mine looks slightly different as follows:
    "C\ProgramFiles|AccessData\Postgresql\9.1\bin\pg_ctl.exe" runservice -N "postgresql-9.1" -w -D "D:\pgData91\"
    Does the path need to be reconfigured as relation to the path strings and the -w and -D?

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