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 name will be PostgreSQL followed by the version information: 
    • PostgreSQL 11.2
  • 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 PostgreSQL service will not start, do the following: 


  1) Open "regedit".

  2) Navigate to "HKey_Local_Machine\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\postgresql-x**-*.*".

  3) Examine the "ImagePath" value.  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

Note: 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 The service will not start, you will need to correct the path in Windows 

Note: For example, the drive letter has simply changed. You'll want to use Disk Management utilities to correct the drive letters to match what is in the registry. If you attempt to change the registry entries the database will not work as it has internal mappings pointing to the original drive letter.

  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 everything is listed correctly in regedit and the log on properties, open task manager and check to see if any postgres processes are running. If they are, right click and choose "end task" until all postgres processes are gone, then go back to Services and try to start the service again.

  • 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 service will still not start, there may be minor corruption, requiring the transaction logs be reset.
  • If the PostgreSQL starts then stops immediately, reboot the machine and see if it will start.