Check out How to Troubleshoot Connecting to the SQL Server Database Engine in the TechNet Wiki. Author Rick Byman takes you step-by-step though the troubleshooting process when you get the “Connect to Server” error. I strongly encourage you to bookmark this article and use it for the next time you see this type of error. Additionally, because it is a TechNet Wiki article, all it takes is a Windows Live ID and you can add to it and improve it based on your experiences.
This article is a great example of what I like to call “troubleshooting methodology” content. When you get a general error, troubleshooting methodology content takes you step-by-step through the system, configuration, and process requirements, typically from the most general and basic to the more complex and specific problem sources. Here is an example of a troubleshooting methodology topic I authored for DirectAccess in Windows Server 2008 R2: General Methodology for Troubleshooting DirectAccess Connections.
Question to the SharePoint community: Would you like to see troubleshooting methodology content for SharePoint 2010 Products? If so, what specific troubleshooting situations would you like to see covered?
Please leave a comment on this blog post with your answer. Thanks!
See Troubleshooting resources for SharePoint Server 2010 for a recent blog post that describes our current troubleshooting content for SharePoint Server 2010.
To get started with SharePoint Server 2010, see the following:
Joe DaviesPrincipal WriterSharePoint Platform and Infrastructure Writing Team