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IW316. High Availability and Disaster Recovery for SharePoint Technologies. Joel Oleson http://blogs.msdn.com/joelo Sr. Technical Product Manager Microsoft Corporation. Session Objectives And Takeaways. Backup/Restore Options Disaster recovery methods High Availability Options

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High Availability and Disaster Recovery for SharePoint Technologies

Joel Oleson


Sr. Technical Product Manager

Microsoft Corporation

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Session Objectives And Takeaways

  • Backup/Restore Options

  • Disaster recovery methods

  • High Availability Options

    • Third Party Backup & High Availability Products

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Backup and Restore Types

Disaster Recovery

Content Recovery

High Availability

  • End user driven

  • Accidental update or deletion

  • Frequent and small-scale

Farm or database restore

Hardware failure or disaster

Hardware migration or replacement

Minimize downtime

Large amounts of data


Additional hardware

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Content RecoverySolutions

  • Recycle Bin

  • Versioning

  • SQL DB Snapshots

  • Web Delete Event

Mostly end-user driven and sometimes admin

Recycle bin l.jpg

“I just deleted my deck and my presentation is in an hour!”

Recycle Bin

  • End user driven

  • Supports lists, doc libs, folders, docs, and items

  • Security trimmed

  • 2 stages

    • End User

    • Admin

  • Site collection level

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Recycle BinTwo Stages

  • 1st stage: end user deletes file/item

    • Appears in end user & site collection recycle bin

    • End user or site coll admin can restore

  • 2nd stage: end user empties recycle bin

    • Appears in site collection recycle bin

    • Site collection admin can restore

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Recycle BinSpecial Features

  • Quotas

    • 1st stage counts for site collection quota

    • 2nd stage is part of “recycle bin quota”

      • Adds 50% by default

  • Auto-delete Service

    • Permanently deletes items (1st or 2nd stage) that have been deleted for more than X days

    • 30 days by default

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  • Pros:

    • Support both list item and document versioning

    • End users can retrieve earlier versions

  • Cons:

    • Versions count towards site quota

    • Functionality needs to be turned on per list (default no)

    • No support for Folder, Web and Site

“I made some changes but now I want to go back to a previous version!”

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SQL Database Snapshots

  • SQL 2005 feature

  • Focused on preventing end user error

  • Not a backup or high availability solution

  • Record is changed in current DB, original value for that record is copied

  • Allows you to retrieve data from snapshot point

  • Efficient space usage

  • Recently posted KB Article: http://support.microsoft.com/?id=929649

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Web Delete Event

“There’s no recycle bin for sites!”

“I deleted my site, but now I want it back!”

  • SharePoint Object Model allows developer to custom build backup solutions at the “web delete” event

  • Sample: MS IT Site Delete Capture 1.0

  • http://www.codeplex.com/governance

  • SPWebEventReceiver.WebDeleting

Web Deleting

event fired


backup the site

Site owner

deletes site

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Web Delete Event

  • Pro:

    • Extensible

    • Sample available at: http://www.codeplex.com/governance

  • Con:

    • No out-of-box solution

Over 1000


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Migrate a Site

Content Migration: replaces smigrate.exe

STSADM –o export –url <url> -f mysite.cmp

STSADM –o import –url <url> -f mysite.cmp

Public file format to represent site

Additional options available via the Object Model

Fine-grained scope selection (SPWeb SPListItem)

Incremental migration (since given change token)


Only migrates site level and below

Not full fidelity: Cannot migrate workflow, alerts, features, solutions, recycle bin state

“I want to move my site to another farm!”

“What happened to Smigrate?”

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Migrate a Site Collection

STSADM –o backup –url <url>


Large scale content and security backup at site collection level

New read-only lock to prevent potential inconsistencies


Performance-sensitive operation

Not ideal for frequent large backups on busy site collections

“I want to backup my site collection and migrate it to a different Content Database!”

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Backup and Restore Types

Disaster Recovery

Content Recovery

High Availability

  • End user errors

  • Accidental update or deletion

  • Frequent and small-scale

Farm or database restore

Hardware failure or disaster

Hardware migration or replacement

Minimize downtime

Large amounts of data


Additional hardware

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Disaster RecoverySolutions

  • SharePoint Backup/Restore

  • SQL backup and restore

  • 3rd party solutions

Use when hardware fails, and as a last resort for service level agreement.

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SharePoint Backup/Restore

“I have a small to medium deployment. Do you have anything for me out of the box?


Out of the box backup/restore UI and command line for central administrators

Our recommended solution for small-medium deployments!

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SharePoint Backup/RestoreHow it works

Central Admin Console


File Server

SQL Backup/Restore

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Out of the Box UI and command line access for Central Administrator

‘Hooks up’ SharePoint databases and search index on Restore

Supports Full and Differential backup

Backs up the search index

Extensible framework for 3rd party applications

SharePoint Backup/RestoreDetails

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Use the command line with Windows Task Scheduler for scheduled backups

Backs up content databases and search index

You must manually backup front end files

We recommend you keep images of your web front ends

High restore time  Low availability

SharePoint Backup/RestoreLimitations

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SharePoint Backup/Restore

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SQL-Only Backup/Restore

  • Pros:

    • Reuse existing technology and processes

    • Non-application specific

  • Cons:

    • Post-restore reattachment and clean up

    • Search index must be backed up separately via SharePoint backup

“My SQL servers are managed by a separate organization or data center from my SharePoint installations.”

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Solution for each scenario

  • For Disaster Recovery:

  • To create a mirror farm:

    • Use stsadm –o backup/restore

  • To migrate a site collection:

    • Use stsadm –o backup http://server/site

  • To migrate a site/list/library/item:

    • Use stsadm –o export/import for sites

    • Use Site Manager within Site collection

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3rd Party Backup Tools

What to look for in a 3rd party solution

Does it back up the Search Index or SSP?

Does it require post-restore manual work

SharePoint integration with VSS framework

Easier for 3rd parties to write custom backup/restore tools

Entire server (search index is included)

Only supports catastrophic overwrite scenario (not migration)

“I want to use a custom or 3rd party tool to backup/restore my farm! Does SharePoint support that?”

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3rd Party Backup Tools

  • “As companies move to SharePoint, one likely impact will be a transition from backing up lots of files housed in shared file systems to backing up monolithic databases. As might be expected, Microsoft provides some basic functional tools for backup, but to effectively manage SharePoint data most organizations will turn to third party tools.”

  • From Computerworld – Jan 23, 2007

  • http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9008906

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3rd Party Backup Tools

  • CommVault SharePoint Solutions

    • Data Protection – item level restore, database restore, front end files including web part assemblies and IIS config

    • Replication – move data across servers, support for snapshot recovery

    • Data Resource Management – monitor and manage disk usage, including archives, backup copies, and replication copies

    • Etc.


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3rd Party Backup Tools

  • AvePoint – DocAve 4.1

    • Enterprise Backup – data compression, item level restore

    • Content Manager – copy live contents across sites, servers, and farms

    • Archiver – complete archive solution

    • Etc.


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3rd Party Tools

  • NeverFail

    • Providing End-to-End High Availability and Disaster Recovery for SharePoint Environments

    • NeverfailLow Bandwidth Module — a data compression tool — is available to optimize and reduce the amount of data that is transmitted between the servers

    • Etc.


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Microsoft Data Protection Manger (DPM)

  • Part of System Center

  • Beta 2 release supports WSS 3.0 and SharePoint Server 2007

  • Uses SharePoint VSS writer, Import/Export to backup and restore SharePoint

    • Can restore servers to individual items

  • Use a recovery server in order to extract item level data from their VSS backups

  • Has integrated UI experience for disk based and tape backups


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Backup and Restore Types

Disaster Recovery

Content Recovery

High Availability

  • End user errors

  • Accidental update or deletion

  • Frequent and small-scale

Farm or database restore

Hardware failure or disaster

Hardware migration or replacement

Minimize downtime

Large amounts of data


Additional hardware

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High AvailabilitySolutions

  • SQL 2005

    • Database Mirroring and Log Shipping

    • SQL Clustering

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Database Mirroring

  • Implemented on a per database level

  • Transaction logs sent from principle to mirror

  • Provides a “warm” standby in case of failure

  • Principal and mirror must be separate SQL 2005 SP1 servers (Enterprise or Standard)

  • Optional “witness” server to monitor primary and mirror to ensure both are working

    • Automatic failover - on failure the witness will turn the mirror into the principle

  • WSS v3 Whitepaper coming soon

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Database Mirroring

  • Three modes that can be used:

    • High Availability: synchronizes transaction writes on both servers and enables automated failover (requires a witness server).

    • High Protection: synchronizes transaction writes on both servers, manual failover.

    • High Performance: writes are not synchronized on both servers, offering some performance gains. Assumes everything will complete successfully on the mirror.

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Database Mirroring







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Database Mirroring

Witness Server



I’m OK!



Everything ok?

Everything ok?

Encrypted channel



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SharePoint and Mirroring

  • When failover occurs need to notify SharePoint

  • Need to tell these DBs that a new server is now the principal:

    • Configuration Database, Admin Content Database

    • Content Database

    • Shared Service Provider Database (MOSS)

    • Search Database (MOSS)

  • Content DBs attach reattach

  • Config DB and admin content DB

    • stsadm.exe -o renameserver -oldservername <oldServerName> -newservername <newServerName>

  • (refer to TechNet whitepaper)

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    • Backup/Restore based technology that relies on transaction log files

    • Need to have a shared folder that contains the log file backups

    • Configure the frequency of backups and shipping

    • No automatic failover

    • Allows you to replicate data to several databases (one to many)

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    Log-Shipping Mirror Farm

    “I want the minimal delay when my data center goes down!”

    “I need another farm to test my solutions before I put them into production!”

    • Mirror / failover farm

      • Warm backup for quick content recovery

      • Replicate primary farm on secondary system

      • SQL log shipping transfers content DB data

      • On disaster, router switches traffic in minutes

    • Limitations:

      • Must manually replicate configuration changes

      • Errors will be log shipped to mirror farm

      • Requires additional hardware

      • Search indexer must run separately on mirror farm

      • Secondary farm must be read-only

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    Log-shipping Mirror Farm

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    SQL Failover Clustering

    Hot backup: short recovery time

    Unattended application availability: automatic failover capability without administrator intervention

    “If my SQL server blows up (hardware failure), how do I keep my SharePoint farm running?”

    SharePoint Web Front Ends

    Server Cluster


    Node B

    Node A

    Shared Disk Array

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    Log-Shipping vs. Clustering

    Summary l.jpg


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    Your Options

    • Recycle Bin

    • Versioning

    • DB Snap Shots

    • Site Delete Capture (Web Delete Event)

    • 3rd party tools

    Disaster Recovery

    Content Recovery

    High Availability

    SharePoint backup/restore


    3rd party tools

    Database Mirroring


    SQL Clustering

    3rd party tools

    Which combination of tools is right for your customer?

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    Related Content

    • How to use SQL Server to take a snapshot of a Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 content database

      • http://support.microsoft.com/?id=929649

    • Overview of Database Mirroring 

      • http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms189852.aspx

    • Understanding Log Shipping

      • http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms187103.aspx

    • Log Shipping and Mirroring

      • http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms187016.aspx

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    Related Content

    • Joel Oleson’s SharePoint Land Blog describes backup/ restore considerations based on deployment: http://blogs.msdn.com/joelo/archive/2006/10/06/SharePoint-Tech-Content-Database-sizing-and-capacity-planning-_2800_backup_2F00_restore-implications_2900_.aspx

    • Using Backup and Restore (Office SharePoint Server 2007): http://technet2.microsoft.com/Office/en-us/library/5a39029f-0939-452b-acd2-44ff87e7ff711033.mspx?mfr=true

    • Replication and High Availability


    Don t delay take em today be one of the first to pass the new mcts exams l.jpg

    For ITPros: (RTM Exam)

    70-631 - Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 - Configuring

    70-630 - Office SharePoint Server 2007 - Configuring

    For Developers: (Beta Exam)

    70-541 - Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 - Application Development

    70-542 - Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 - Application Development

    DON'T DELAY – TAKE 'EM TODAY!!!Be one of the first to pass the NEW MCTS Exams!!!

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