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Summary : The article discusses SQL Server Error 5172, a file header corruption issue during database attachment. It outlines causes, including damaged files or improper shutdowns, and offers solutions: manual recovery with backups and using Kernel for SQL Database Recovery, a professional tool ensuring secure and accurate repair of corrupt MDF files while maintaining data integrity.

Microsoft SQL Server stands as a reliable Relational Database Management System, serving the purpose of storing and retrieving data when needed. Within every MS SQL database server lies an essential component known as the MDF (Master Data File), containing tables, functions, rules, triggers, and more, accompanied by an LDF responsible for storing transaction logs. Despite being a popular choice among users in the realm of RDBMS platforms, MS SQL databases are not immune to corruption issues. One such error that users encounter is the file header corruption error 5172.

This error arises when attempting to attach the MDF/LDF database file stored on your system. In the MS SQL Server environment, a message window appears, displaying the following message: “The header for file ‘test.mdf’ is not a valid database file header. The FILE SIZE property is incorrect. (SQL Server Error 5172)”

SQL Recovery

Reason for Microsoft SQL Server Error 5172?

The possible reasons that can cause file header corruption are mentioned below:

  • Damaged or corrupt log file or data file.
  • When you try to attach higher version SQL database server files to a lower version of the SQL database server.
  • Sudden power failure due to which drivers and controllers get affected.
  • Improper system shutdown or SQL Server reboot.
Solution to Fix MS SQL File Header Error 5172

You can solve the file header error 5172 with the help of two methods that solve the error by repairing and restoring data back to the database server from database files.

Solution 1: Manually Fix with Recent Backup of Database

It is the best solution to recover data from backup files of the database. To do so, you need to follow the given steps:

Step 1: Exit from SQL Server running instance.
Step 2: Now, copy MDF and LDF files to another location on your current machine.
Step 3: Simply delete the original MDF and LDF data files and start SQL Server instance once again.  
Step 4: Create a new database with a similar name and filename. Then, stop the SQL Server.
Step 5: Finally, overwrite MDF and NDF file data files for online database recovery.

Solution 2: Automated Solution to Fix File Header Corruption Error 5172

To ensure accurate and secure repair and recover MDF file data, it is highly recommended to utilize a reliable third-party automated solution. The professional Kernel for Kernel SQL Database Recovery Software tool is your best choice to efficiently repair, recover, and restore corrupt MDF files back to your SQL Database Server, ensuring 100% accuracy and security.

The software is specifically crafted to retrieve various database elements including functions, tables, rules, and deleted records. It can restore large data files that have been impacted by ransomware attacks. Additionally, the tool supports the recovery of UNICODE characters from the database.

Final Words:

Attempting to resolve SQL error 5172 manually poses risks as it may further harm the tables within the MDF files’ database. When faced with complex SQL errors, employing this software is the safest course of action to recover the entire database. All tables within the database will be restored to their original state. Additionally, the software provides a preview of the tables in each database, ensuring accurate recovery without compromising data integrity.

Kernel for SQL Database Recovery