Database Administrators Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for database professionals who wish to improve their database skills and learn from others in the community. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

We have a partitioned database that I'd like to get copied over on a semi-regular basis to another server for testing updates. Since the partitioning is based on a date column, the most current data exists in one file.

Is it possible to restore just one datafile from the backup to the other server?

Complicating issue: we use Symantec's BackupExec. If this is possible using plain ol' backup from SQL Server, I can probably get that done, though.

share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can do a piecemeal restore of this data file if:

  • you are in full recovery mode (this is not clear in the question - I think there are many configuration options for BackupExec)
  • you have more than one filegroup (this is not clear in the question)
  • this data file is read/write and in its own filegroup (otherwise you will also need all of the other data files in this filegroup). I assume this is the case because, how else could you know that this partition exists only in this one file?
  • you can restore the primary filegroup and then this filegroup (in other words, the rest of the data is NOT in the primary filegroup - also not clear in the question)
  • you are on Enterprise Edition (again, unknown)

More details in the following articles on MSDN:

share|improve this answer
+1. Nice answer. – Mitch Wheat Jan 12 '13 at 2:25

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.