I'm trying to restore a live db to a test db, but I keep getting a '..failed because the resulting cumulative db size would exceed...limit of 10240' error, yet my database is under 10GB, I feel like the answer is in the 'cumulative db size' part.

db size report Being new to SQL Server, I find it confusing that different numbers are reported depending on where you look. I've done multiple purges yet the upper 10,243MB number doesn't seem to change. The source .BAK file size in bytes is: 10,622,637,056‬ (9.9GB) Also, autogrowth set to 50MB - could that allocation be pushing it over the limit? Since the source is the live db, I'm hesitant to monkey with the autogrowth limit. Suggestions appreciated!

  • Which edition are you using? are you trying to restore on Express edition??
    – CR241
    Feb 24, 2020 at 21:17
  • Yes trying to restore to the same server. I should mention that I am (obviously!) in process of upgrading to standard edition, but was hoping to accomplish the restore to test database in the meantime.
    – hap76
    Feb 26, 2020 at 21:20

1 Answer 1


The database size limit is for the total size of all database files, both data file(s) and log file(s). So you've got a 7GB problem, not a 0.1GB problem.

You could try to shrink the log file down to near-zero, but even then it is going to be very close (it also may expand as soon as you try to query the database).

  • 1
    Thanks Brad, I suspected that originally, but then found this: blog.sqlauthority.com/2015/10/21/… > 5. Does this limit include Transaction Log (LDF) file? No. It’s only for data files. Can you confirm that that information is incorrect?
    – hap76
    Feb 26, 2020 at 21:17
  • @jjsararas Very interesting, that's news to me. I'd trust SQLAuthority's info, though, he usually knows what he's talking about, and it sounds like he's tested it out. Not sure that helps you, though, unless your problem is the subtle difference between 1GB (1024^3) and 1 billion bytes.
    – BradC
    Feb 26, 2020 at 22:00

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