Wednesday, August 06, 2008

MOSS Site Collection Restore vs Content Database Restore

Here's a MOSS tip that should apply whether you're doing MOSS development work or disaster recovery.

Traditionally, we had been taking the approach of doing a site collection backup and restore for each site collection. We would do this in two scenarios: 1) whenever we need to recover or for at test DR run, or 2) when completing a build and moving to a new environment.

What we've found is that it's much faster and more reliable to just take the content database and restore than instead of the individual site collections (this assumes, that your site collections are using the same content database, but you could do the same with multiple content databases).

Our results from this test proved out the following:
1. Content database restores are significantly faster. We were up and running again within the hour.
2. A lot more "stuff" comes along with the content database vs the individual SC backups. This includes obviously the content, but also more configuration especially around the web parts. That is the key -- we would spend hours and hours reconfiguring web parts with a SC restore, which we did not have to do with the content database restore. Basically the only things we had to configure after we did the content database restore was contained in the SSP such as search.
3. We had some very strange results with using individual site collection backups. Things like the "Home" tab would be duplicated and we could not "repair" it without a hack job. With the content database, everything came across perfectly.

So I would recommend using content database restores instead of site collections restore (depending on what you're trying to do of course), but we've found it's a much faster and cleaner approach.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nice post! Thanks for that quick information