We finally installed an instance of ArcSDE 10 today. My first attempt at connecting in ArcCatalog 9.3.1 failed with the following error:
Failed to connect to the specified server.
This release of the GeoDatabase is either invalid or out of date. [Please run the
ArcSDE setup utility using the -o install option.]
DBMS table not found [sde.sde.GDB_Release]
I was the proud, new recipient of a non-misleading error message. After some minor head-slapping, I realized that 9.3.1 and older versions of ArcGIS are not able to connect to ArcSDE 10. Doh! My bad–I should have read ESRI’s clear information on this topic. At least I never actually tried to install ArcSDE with the -o option as the first error message instructed me to do.