It seems that with oob tools or using explorer view the modified/created/modifiedby/createdby information gets lost or changed to the time of copying the listitems/documents to another site collection.

Is it possible (oob or with tools) to copy a subsite or selected libraries (or even folders) from one subsite to another site collection (sp2007 and/or sp2010)?

6 Answers 6


stsadm -o export -includeusersecurity seems to work actually.

Export site:

stsadm -o export -url http://sp2010/sites/sc/subsite/ -filename subsite.cmp -includeusersecurity

Export list:

stsadm -o export -url http://sp2010/sites/sc/subsite/Lists/mylist/AllItems.aspx -filename mylist.cmp -includeusersecurity

  • Yep this is a good option for sub-sites
    – Kit Menke
    Commented Apr 13, 2012 at 15:37

The content migration framework should be able to migrate document library while keeping the created/modified info. Since you are looking for a tool, have you already tried to use the Content Deployment Wizard by Chris O'Brien? It should work without particolar problem for simple migration, but be aware that the migration framework has some limitations (for example, feature files won't be migrated) so you may need to tweak it a little if any special requirement arise.


As far as I experienced, not full. My most successful way: Using oob feature "open in explorer". That creates a network drive. Then I moved items, copying failed.

What happened: All fields created by/ modified by etc where overwritten with my account. But: I succeeded to keep last versions and document stayed checked-in. That means: the really last version became fully new written with my comments and stuff. But the comments and authors from previous versions were kept.

It is only 90% of what you want to do, but more than all lost.

  • I remember that explorer view would be able to cut/paste metadata from a site collection to another only inside a single content database. not sure though... (this was in sp2007). in this case it might be possible to backup/restore to the same content database, and then cut/paste in explorer view.
    – thomius
    Commented Apr 13, 2012 at 15:43

I can recommend Gary Lapointe's custom STSADM commands (for 2007) or the powershell cmdlets (for 2010).

I've used the gl-exportlist to export a huge SP 2007 list with a lot of people field information and it worked great. It looks like this is also a wrapper around the content deployment API.



For SharePoint 2010 you can take advantage of the Import-Export PowerShell cmdlets to export/import a list and keep the version history etc...


  • This does not seem to preserve the created/modified information
    – thomius
    Commented Apr 13, 2012 at 14:54
  • True... I misread that you wanted to do the migration and keep the history etc... backing up the content with stsadm or using this manual operation would be the way to go... unless you use a custom solution. blog.henryong.com/2008/01/21/…
    – user7835
    Commented Apr 13, 2012 at 21:43

I have tested this and it appears to have been corrected IF you use Explorer windows. I cut and pasted from my local drive to SharePoint Sites and One Drive for Business and WITH THE ONLINE SITE open in explorer. That kept the modified date intact.

I cut and pasted and copied from One Drive for Business to a SharePoint site with both open with Explorer and it kept the information.

I copied and pasted form SharePoint to SharePoint, both open in Explorer and it kept the information.

It would not let me cut and paste from SharePoint to SharePoint site, so I have to copy then delete from the target site and leave it on the destination.

Obviously way to late to help Kit, but if someone else stumbles on this problem this might help them. Just use two explorer windows.

  • It appears within File Explorer to retain the meta data, but if you view the files in your sharepoint library, the created and createdby values are not retained from the source to the target.
    – Sue White
    Commented Apr 22, 2020 at 19:43

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