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In SSMS 2005, I want to use the GUI to copy a database by restoring in to a new database. I was using the "From database" radio button for the source, but then the databases in the list disappeared recently. I read the sql server documentation and it says that only databases that are on record as having a backup will show up in this list. Nothing in the documentation says whether this backup will the actual data source or not.

When I select "From Database" in the source options, does it pull from the most recent backup of the database, or the actual live database?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Apr 25 '12 at 16:00

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I would also encourage you to become familiar with the RESTORE DATABASE commands. Relying on the UI can be problematic and your steps through the UI can be difficult to remember never mind add to source control. –  Aaron Bertrand Apr 25 '12 at 16:01

2 Answers 2

It will not pull from the live database. There is no SQL command for this (yet). It will give you a selection of recent backups you can pick from. You can only restore from a database snapshot and from a backup, not from a live database.

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At least in 2008, the Restore GUI is populated from the backup history tables in msdb. I assume in 2005 it works the same way. (Note: even if your servers are still 2005, it's worth it to upgrade your management tools.)

When you use the "Restore from database" list, you'll get a restore from the last backup you took of that database on that server (which may or may not be what you want).

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