Restore site collections in SharePoint Server

APPLIES TO: yes-img-132013 yes-img-162016 yes-img-192019 yes-img-seSubscription Edition no-img-sopSharePoint in Microsoft 365

You can only restore a site collection in SharePoint Server by using PowerShell.

Using PowerShell to restore a site collection in SharePoint Server

You can use PowerShell to restore a site collection manually or as part of a script that can be run at scheduled intervals.

To restore a site collection by using PowerShell

  1. Verify that you have the following memberships:

    • securityadmin fixed server role on the SQL Server instance.

    • db_owner fixed database role on all databases that are to be updated.

    • Administrators group on the server on which you are running the PowerShell cmdlets.

      An administrator can use the Add-SPShellAdmin cmdlet to grant permissions to use SharePoint Server cmdlets.


    If you do not have permissions, contact your Setup administrator or SQL Server administrator to request permissions. For additional information about PowerShell permissions, see Add-SPShellAdmin.

  2. Start the SharePoint Management Shell.

  3. At the PowerShell command prompt, type the following command:

    Restore-SPSite -Identity <SiteCollectionURL> -Path <Backup file> [-DatabaseServer <DatabaseServerName>] [-DatabaseName <ContentDatabaseName>] [-HostHeader <Host header>] [-Force] [-GradualDelete] [-Verbose]


    • <SiteCollectionURL> is URL for the site collection you want to restore.

    • <DatabaseServerName> is name of the database server where the site collection resides.

    • <ContentDatabaseName> is the name of the content database.

    If you want to restore the site collection to a specific content database, use the DatabaseServer and DatabaseName parameters to specify the content database. If you do not specify a content database, the site collection will be restored to a content database chosen by SharePoint Server.

    If you are restoring a host-named site collection, use the Identity parameter to specify the URL of the host-named site collection and use the HostHeader parameter to specify the URL of the Web application that will hold the host-named site collection.

    If you want to overwrite an existing site collection, use the Force parameter.


    If the site collection that you are restoring is 1 gigabyte or larger, you can use the GradualDelete parameter for better performance during the restore process. When this parameter is used, the site collection that is overwritten is marked as deleted, which immediately prevents any additional access to its content. The data in the marked site collection is then deleted gradually over time by a timer job instead of all at the same time, which reduces the impact on server performance.

For more information, see Restore-SPSite.


We recommend that you use Microsoft PowerShell when performing command-line administrative tasks. The Stsadm command-line tool has been deprecated, but is included to support compatibility with previous product versions.

See also


Back up site collections in SharePoint Server