Reporting Services Loses Encryption Keys

Two installations of SSRS 2005 on two separate machines in my shop seem to regularly lose their encryption keys at exactly the same time. These are developer machines with the development edition of SQL Server 2005 running, so I'm hoping that perhaps someone here has an explanation for this. About once a month, they lose their encryption keys and display the message:

"The report server cannot decrypt the symmetric key used to access sensitive or encrypted data in a report server database. You must either restore a backup key or delete all encrypted content."

Restoring the keys from backup fixes the problem. However, it seems odd that they both "lose" the keys at regular intervals. I can even recall at least once instance when it happened on exactly the same day. Does anyone have any ideas why this would be? Here is some information about the installations:

SQL Server Type: SQL Server 2005

Developer Edition Build Number: 3353

Reporting Services Account: Network Service

Thank you...

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asked Oct 30, 2009 at 12:18 PM in Default

NYSystemsAnalyst gravatar image

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2 answers: sort voted first

Based on the frequency it almost sounds like a password change issue with the Network Service.

Have you tried rebooting the box or recycling SSRS services to see if the error clears up instead of restoring the backup key?

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answered Oct 30, 2009 at 02:54 PM

Blackhawk-17 gravatar image

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Yes. We turn our development machines off at night, so it gets a fresh start every morning.
Oct 30, 2009 at 04:26 PM NYSystemsAnalyst
Do they lose their keys at start-up or after having been running for awhile?
Oct 30, 2009 at 04:50 PM Blackhawk-17
Are .NET hotfixes applied every month? They can sometimes cause issues.
Oct 30, 2009 at 05:01 PM Blackhawk-17
Yes, they are. However, we never see this problem on our production or test servers which run SQL Server Standard edition. It only seems to happen on machines that run Development edition.
Nov 02, 2009 at 10:29 AM NYSystemsAnalyst
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The problem could be caused by changing the 'log on as' account used in the SQL Server Agent Windows service.

Additional information found here.

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answered Oct 30, 2009 at 07:42 PM

littlefuzz gravatar image


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asked: Oct 30, 2009 at 12:18 PM

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Last Updated: Oct 30, 2009 at 12:18 PM