Problem

You are installing SQL Server 2019 and you get stuck at the Machine Learning Server Components installation step. Your installer could not download the files for whatever reason, it asks you to download the files with unclear language. How do you get the next button become enabled again?

Gotcha

This is a particularly annoying problem with very little explanation offered as usual with SQL Server installers (they are historically bad). So I am going to explain what needs to happen in more detail.

The explanation is mostly covered already by Pinal Dave over at SQLAuthority.com, but I feel he is missing some finer details I will explain below. I was in a rush to get my installation to work so I didn’t think to take a screenshot of the problem. It looks exactly like what is on Pinal’s blog post.

How do I fix this?

The exact language reads as such:

Setup was unable to contact the download server. Provide the location of the Microsoft Machine Learning Server installation files and click “Next”. The installation files can be downloaded from:
https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=000000&lcid=1033
https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=000000&lcid=1033
https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=000000&lcid=1033
https://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=000000&lcid=1033

This is just an example please don’t try to use these links

Based on the language I interpreted it as “Use any of these mirror links below to get the installation files.” Well that was completely wrong so here is what you should do instead:

  • Download EVERY file from each link provided – not negotiable
  • Each file you are downloading is a CAB file for a feature you elected to install
  • DO NOT extract the CAB files – it won’t help you at all and it takes a long time to do (yeah I did this)
  • Make sure ALL the CAB files are located in the same folder
  • When you are finished downloading the CAB files point the “Install Path” to the location where you downloaded the CAB files.
    • FYI: “Install path” does not mean installation path in this context. Instead it means “installation file location” or more specifically “cab file location”. Or in other words “Where can the SQL Server installer find the CAB files you just downloaded.”

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