I have an application (regular .net winforms app) that uses a db to store it's data. That application is getting replaced but we want to save the data because we eventually want to ditch maintaining the db.

We came up with a solution to host the db as a sharepoint site, that contains lists that represents a table and each list contains items that are the records of the table.

A few stuff about the db:

  1. We have over 30 tables linked to each other
  2. Some tables have over hundreds of thousends of records, maybe even millions.
  3. Overall db size reaches close to 500GB
  4. It is an sql server db

The problems we face:

  1. How can I do that not manually
  2. How to not exceed the limit of a list (we already faced a problem that people from microsoft told us not to exceed 10k or 100k items in a list)
  3. Is it even possible?
  4. Can it be made without the use of lookup fields for the connections between the tables?

1 Answer 1


IMO, you're looking forward to a lot of problems if you really want to push all this data into SharePoint lists!

First, you're hitting a number of hard or soft limits in SharePoint : no more than 5000 items per view, no more than 200GB per content DB, no more than 12 lookups in a query, etc.

Second, conceptually, SharePoint is not a replacement for a relational DB: lists look like tables, but they're actually an end-user paradigm, with more features (versioning, permissions, check-in/out, folders, alerts, ...) but less power (rows limitation, less relationships, performance hits, ...).

And I don't want to imagine how you'll migrate your data...

In your situation, I would never go that way. In the time needed to write a migration tool, and (to try) to solve all sorts of problems you'll eventualy get, you can write 10 times a simple UI to browse your current DB from a Web (SharePoint) UI.

  • +1 SharePoint is not a RDBMS, just write a front-end for your current database. Jan 17, 2016 at 13:37
  • We wanted to avoid further maintenence for the server, but from what I understand maintaining another server is the better option. Thanks Jan 17, 2016 at 17:29

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