sys.server_principals (Transact-SQL)

Applies to: SQL Server Azure SQL Database Azure SQL Managed Instance Analytics Platform System (PDW)

Contains a row for every server-level principal.


Microsoft Entra ID was previously known as Azure Active Directory (Azure AD).

Column name Data type Description
name sysname Name of the principal. Is unique within a server.
principal_id int ID number of the Principal. Is unique within a server.
sid varbinary(85) SID (Security-IDentifier) of the principal. If Windows principal, then it matches Windows SID.
type char(1) Principal type:

S = SQL login

U = Windows login

G = Windows group

R = Server role

C = Login mapped to a certificate

E = External Login from Microsoft Entra ID

X = External group from Microsoft Entra group or applications

K = Login mapped to an asymmetric key
type_desc nvarchar(60) Description of the principal type:








is_disabled int 1 = Login is disabled.
create_date datetime Time at which the principal was created.
modify_date datetime Time at which the principal definition was last modified.
default_database_name sysname Default database for this principal.
default_language_name sysname Default language for this principal.
credential_id int ID of a credential associated with this principal. If no credential is associated with this principal, credential_id will be NULL.
owning_principal_id int The principal_id of the owner of a server role. NULL if the principal is not a server role.
is_fixed_role bit Returns 1 if the principal is one of the built-in server roles with fixed permissions. For more information, see Server-Level Roles.


Any login can see their own login name, the system logins, and the fixed server roles. To see other logins, requires ALTER ANY LOGIN, or a permission on the login. To see user-defined server roles, requires ALTER ANY SERVER ROLE, or membership in the role.

In Azure SQL Database, only the following principals can see all logins:

  • members of the server role ##MS_LoginManager## or special database role loginmanager in master
  • the Microsoft Entra admin and SQL server admin

The visibility of the metadata in catalog views is limited to securables that a user either owns, or on which the user was granted some permission. For more information, see Metadata Visibility Configuration.


The following query lists the permissions explicitly granted or denied to server principals.


The permissions of fixed server roles (other than public) do not appear in sys.server_permissions. Therefore, server principals may have additional permissions not listed here.

SELECT pr.principal_id,, pr.type_desc,   
    pe.state_desc, pe.permission_name   
FROM sys.server_principals AS pr   
JOIN sys.server_permissions AS pe   
    ON pe.grantee_principal_id = pr.principal_id;  


The permissions of fixed server roles do not appear in sys.server_permissions.

See also

Security Catalog Views (Transact-SQL)
Catalog Views (Transact-SQL)
Principals (Database Engine)
Permissions Hierarchy (Database Engine)