enter image description hereI got a .bak file from one of our vendors. The instructions from them says that I should RESTORE WITH STANDBY and select "Tail-log backup" under options. Problem is that "Tail-log backup" is greyed out in SSMS. I am logged in as sysadmin and my SQL Server version is MSSQL14

  • Does the database you are restoring exist on the instance, at the time you are trying to restore? If so is it in SIMPLE recovery mode? May 10, 2019 at 16:54

1 Answer 1


A tail-log backup is only relevant for databases in full or bulk-logged recovery, and you can only perform a tail-log backup if you have access to an online copy of the same database.

If you're just restoring a copy of a backup of some other database in a new location (regardless if you're replacing an older copy), and all you have is a static .bak file, you don't need to check this box.

I think they just sent you instructions for how they restore this backup internally, maybe, but this portion is irrelevant to you if you don't have access to the original source database in order to take a tail-log backup.

(Also, I would ask your vendor for RESTORE DATABASE commands, instead of a guide to pointing and clicking.)

  • See sqlskills.com/blogs/paul/… for a good explanation of why taking a tail log backup before a restore is only relevant when recovering from a hardware failure or database corruption. May 10, 2019 at 23:04
  • @David yeah, I was thinking the OP got instructions not for restoring a full backup, but for recovering from some kind of disaster. May 11, 2019 at 14:15

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