How to Delete the Default SSP in SharePoint

If you attempt to delete the default SSP from within Shared Services Administration, the Delete link will be greyed out. That’s because it’s the default SSP and SharePoint doesn’t allow you to delete the default SSP via the GUI.

One option to get around this is to create a new SSP and change associations to point to that new SSP. Once you do that, the Delete link for the original SSP becomes available because it no longer has any shared services associated with it.

If you’re like me however, and you don’t want to go to all that effort, then there’s a little trick to get around this.

stsadm -o deletessp -title SharedServices -force

The help for the deletessp command won’t actually indicate that -force is a valid switch, but without it, the command may fail. If you run into errors, try running it with -force.

The deletessp command will force the removal of the default SSP. If you receive an error after running the command, that’s fine. Sign back into Shared Services Administration and the delete link for the default SSP should no longer be greyed out.

Once you click Delete, you will be prompted to delete the associated databases, but in my experience, this generally doesn’t work. As a secondary step, I often find myself doing a bit of clean up. Within the database server, I remove all the default SSP databases and within IIS, I remove the SSP web site and application pool.

That should do it! You should now be able to create a new SSP. If you have any problems, or encounted an issue I did not cover here, please contact me or post a comment, I’d be happy to help.

You shouldn’t have to recreate your My Sites web app or any other web app that was associated with that SSP. You should be able to just re-configure those associations. Any search, profile or audience data will be lost and will have to be re-configured.

9 Responses to “How to Delete the Default SSP in SharePoint”

  1. shakti December 8, 2008 at 6:19 pm #

    Hi, Even if you delete the SSP database by mistake and you are not able to delete that SSP from the UI, you can use this force command to delete the SSP. Its really kool….it worked for me.

  2. shereen December 8, 2008 at 6:21 pm #

    Good to know Shakti, thanks for posting that update.

  3. Lisa December 30, 2008 at 11:26 am #

    I am typing in that command and still nothing is being deleted

  4. shereen January 6, 2009 at 9:57 am #

    Hi Lisa, can you provide more info as to what you are trying to do exactly? So you ran the command and what were the results? What was the status in Central Admin once you ran the command? I’d be happy to help if you’re still experiencing this issue.

  5. bruceowen January 6, 2009 at 4:18 pm #

    Hi,
    can anybody tell my why the underlying databases for the default SSP get deleted when i use the command
    stsadm -o deletessp -title SharedServices -force

    but if i use the followng command sequence
    stsadm -o deletessp -title SharedServices
    then stsadm -o deletessp -title SharedServices -force the databases dont get deleted

    it appears the option switch
    -deletedatabases does not work

  6. bruceowen January 6, 2009 at 4:25 pm #

    correction to my previous postit appears that omitting the option switch
    -deletedatabases does not work in the way that it supposed to

  7. Rafael Saunders January 29, 2013 at 9:39 pm #

    As usual, where the Central Admin UI is somewhat limited and incomplete, stsadm saves the day with the deletessp operation. Simply provide the SSP title.

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