SQL Server 2008 Setup – "The handle is invalid"

I was trying to set up a VM for a proof of concept with an all 2008 stack (i.e. Windows 2008 Server, SQL Server 2008, IIS7, and WSS with SP1).  Everything was going along just fine until I hit this beauty:

screen

"SQL Server Setup has encountered the following error:

The handle is invalid. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x0070006 (E_HANDLE))."

It took me a good long time and many combinations of Google searches to find this:

Found the problem.
This is a MSDN version so the product key is pidded but it is not enabled as read-only. So, when you’re presented with the product key dialog, you can muck it up.
To reproduce, simply select the "Specify a free edition" radio button without changing the shown PID, then reselect the "Enter the product key" radio button (again without changing the PID) and continue with the installation.
I expect this bug exists in all MSDN editions.

Posted by oj on 8/6/2008 at 3:28 PM

This worked great for me.

Thanks oj, where ever you are!

31 Replies to “SQL Server 2008 Setup – "The handle is invalid"”

  1. me too, thanks again! Nice that 2008 has it’s own install gotcha after 2005’s tools/servers must be in same directory.

  2. There is no instruction to follow here on HOW TO SOLVE the Problem. There must be a step by step instruction. Thus just describing the problem as:”This is a MSDN version so the product key is pidded but it is not enabled as read-only. So, when you’re presented with the product key dialog, you can muck it up.
    To reproduce, simply select the “Specify a free edition” ” …is unintelligible even for a seasoned tech support. Tell us WHAT TO DO and
    how to do it. Are we going to reload a CD, go to the control panel, unscrew something or what???

  3. There “must be a step by step instruction”? I’m not sure I agree with that, but I am glad to give some further clarification.

    Speaking only for myself, I encountered this error when installing an MSDN copy of SQL 2008. It would not allow me to progress in the installation process past this point. In order to overcome that, I clicked “Back” a few times (in the same install process which threw the error) until I got to the prompt for a Product ID (PID). Then I did as oj suggested which is to select a different radio button option, then re-select the option of using the pre-entered PID. Once I did that, I was able to complete the installation.

  4. Splendid posting. This would have taken hours for me to figure out.

    The intersting thing with SQL Server 2008, it installed fine without any issue on a VMWare instance ( Windows 2003 OS).. Not sure why ?
    Any one, any inputs on this.

    Again Thanks for posting the resolution.

  5. Just to clarify the original poster’s fix above, at the beginning of his/her second paragraph, they meant to say “To resolve…” instead of “To reproduce…”

  6. That was spot on. Really saved lots of time from searching rest of the web. I had the same issue and just toggled the radio button and I was able to move forward with Installation of SQL 2008 Enterprise Edition on VM.

  7. Had the same issue with the MSDN version of SQL 2012 SP1. This workaround got me past it. Thanks!

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