I am upgrading from SP 2010 to 2013 using content database approach. The lists and content get moved but the user permissions are not copied? Am I missing anything?

2 Answers 2


Do not switch from Classic to Claims on SharePoint 2010. This is not the recommended approach as you then potentially have a non-working environment. Instead, create a Claims-based Web Application on SharePoint 2013. When attaching each content database (you can do this one at a time or all databases at once), simply run:

Convert-SPWebApplication -Identity http://webAppUrl -From Legacy -To Claims -RetainPermissions:$true

That will convert the users within the database from classic to claims.

This is the best approach as you will then be able to fall back to a known working SharePoint 2010 environment. If you convert to claims on SharePoint 2010 first, not only will it take longer, but you may end up with a production environment that unexpectedly does not function properly.

  • Hi @Trevor I always trust your answer but based on my attached Microsoft article technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/gg251985.aspx , Microsoft said you can convert them to claims-based web applications within SharePoint 2010 Products, and then migrate them to SharePoint 2013. and this is the first method that I have mentioned above besides the other supported scenarios. and I think this is the answer for missing permission , so should you provide me with any link that says the first approach is not recommended , where I provide a link that said both scenarios are supported! Thanks Nov 13, 2016 at 8:01
  • 1
    No one said you couldn't. I said you shouldn't and it's not best practice or as fast as performing the conversation on 2013.
    – user6024
    Nov 13, 2016 at 8:03

It looks like you don't switch SharePoint 2010 classic-mode to claims-based authentication before you take the content database backup in SharePoint 2010.

So you should

  • Switch your web application to claims in your 2010-environment.
  • Backup your content database,
  • In 2013 environment create a web application with claims and restore the content database then attach it with Mount-SPContentDatabase cmdlet.

All the scripts requited to switch your web application to claims in your 2010-environment with detail steps at Migrate from classic-mode to claims-based authentication in SharePoint 2013

Meanwhile, you can switch the authentication mode after migrating in SharePoint 2013 environment as the following :

  • In SharePoint 2013 Create a web application with classic mode.
  • Attach the database to this web application.
  • Convert the classic mode to claims

All the scripts requited to Create a web application with classic mode and switch mode are mentioned with detail steps at Migrate from classic-mode to claims-based authentication in SharePoint 2013

For more Details about Upgrading process check upgrade process to SharePoint 2013

Some considerations

  • Based on Microsoft article both scenarios are supported , and based on @Trevor Seward the second approach is the best practice (thanks to Trevor Seward)
  • To convert from classic to claims it's recommended to use Windows PowerShell , it's not supported by Central administration UI.
  • Based on Microsoft After you convert a web application to claims-based authentication, you cannot revert it to classic-mode authentication. but there's some workaround like mentioned in this article to revert back.

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