Potential backup solution

Posted on 2011-10-26
Last Modified: 2012-05-12
Hi, I have an environment where I have users enter data into a custom list in Sharepoint 2010.  I collect their data into an Access 2010 database and have a union query that merges it for me.

Recently, one of the users (accidentally?) deleted the site.  Our IT department's backup plan isn't enough that we're happy with the recovery period or the last saved date.

So, we'd like a way to backup only the custom lists on the site.  

I thought of the following scenarios and wondered if others could give their opinion.  
1.  Create a copy of the list in addition to the linked list in the Access Database (haven't tried this yet)
2.  Export each datasheet as an excel file and store those locally.

I understand that a packaged backup of the site itself isn't possible given the nature of sharepoint so I'm trying to find a potential solution.  Any help is appreciated!!

Thank you
Question by:cdarbonne
    LVL 47

    Expert Comment

    by:Dale Fye (Access MVP)
    I had a similar problem with my SharePoint administrators.

    The problem with any simple (Access, Excel, ...) external backup solution is that even if you have all the data, when you attempt to put it back into your SharePoint list, you cannot insert a record with an ID (Sharepoint PK) that has already existed.  So any of your PK/FK relationships will be invalid.

    If this is a critical application, you should make the case to your boss or whoever controls the SharePoint backup policy to ensure that those lists that are critical get backed up on a frequency that is acceptable to your operation.  You management needs to understand the risks associated with infrequent backups.

    Author Comment

    Yikes.  can you tell me what PK/FK stands for?

    This is a large corporation and everyone is my boss ;)  we'll see how it goes.  I do appreciate the info though.
    LVL 47

    Accepted Solution

    PK = Primary Key
    FK = Foreign Key

    Primary keys uniquely identify every record.  In SharePoint, you don't see the [ID] field associated with each list item but it is the Primary Key.  If you link the list to Access, you should see the [ID] field as the first field in the list.

    a Foreign Key is a value in one table that points to a Primary Key in another table.

    If all you have is a single SharePoint list that you are dealing with, then these are not a problem.  You indicated:

    "I collect their data into an Access 2010 database and have a union query that merges it for me."

    If you are not concerned with the ID value in those lists and have something else that would uniquely identify a each record, then backing the data up to an Access database would be a workable solution.  Although I would recommend that you store the data in a file that is separate from your working database application.

    Author Comment

    Thank you so much
    LVL 47

    Expert Comment

    by:Dale Fye (Access MVP)
    Appreciate the points, but if I were you, I probably would have left this open for a while longer to get some ideas from other Access / Sharepoint experts.  This is a critical issue and like surgurey, I would attempt to get as many opinions on the topic as I could.

    If you want to reopen the question, click the request assistance hyperlink in the original post and request that a moderator reopen the question.

    Author Comment

    oh ok....i'll do that.  thanks.
    LVL 47

    Expert Comment

    by:Dale Fye (Access MVP)
    Hopefully, you were able to convince your boss that they (the IT department) needs to be backing up your lists on a more frequent basis.

    Write Comment

    Please enter a first name

    Please enter a last name

    We will never share this with anyone.

    Featured Post

    What Should I Do With This Threat Intelligence?

    Are you wondering if you actually need threat intelligence? The answer is yes. We explain the basics for creating useful threat intelligence.

    Suggested Solutions

    Title # Comments Views Activity
    Invalid procedure call or argument 1 23
    Concatination in Sample DB 14 49
    DataTables Form Input issue. 3 26
    Printing Problem 13 21
    When you are entering numbers in a speadsheet, and don't remember what 6×7 is, you just type “=6*7" instead. It works in every cell! This is not so in Access. To enter the elusive 42 in a text box, you have to find a calculator, and then copy the re…
    Introduction When developing Access applications, often we need to know whether an object exists.  This article presents a quick and reliable routine to determine if an object exists without that object being opened. If you wanted to inspect/ite…
    Using Microsoft Access, learn some simple rules for how to construct tables in a relational database. Split up all multi-value fields into single values: Split up fields that belong to other things into separate tables: Make sure that all record…
    In Microsoft Access, learn different ways of passing a string value within a string argument. Also learn what a “Type Mis-match” error is about.

    737 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

    Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

    Join & Ask a Question

    Need Help in Real-Time?

    Connect with top rated Experts

    15 Experts available now in Live!

    Get 1:1 Help Now