I have a question regarding multiple site collections in a single web application. Take the following structure;

http://www.site.com (Root site collection)
http://www.site.com/sites/subsiteA (First sub site collection)
http://www.site.com/sites/subsiteB (Second sub site collection)

If I run this;

stsadm -o backup -url http://www.site.com -filename c:...\site.bak

Will it only backup the root www.site.com collection data from the shared content database or will it also backup ../subsiteA and ../subsiteB also? I'm trying to backup / restore the root site collection across different environments without changing any of the content in the subsites in each environment. Is this possible?

Thanks, Brian.

1 Answer 1


Yes, its possible and your guess is right. It will backup or restore only the site collection that you have mentioned, even if it is the root.

For other site collections, you might have to backup or restore them separately.

  • perfect, that's exactly what I was hoping to hear! :-) Sep 19, 2012 at 14:53
  • also, is there a way to backup all site collections simultaneously in case I need to? Or would this be a case of backing up the shared content database and doing a full content database restore? Sep 19, 2012 at 14:54
  • if the whole site collections needed to be backed up, you will have to restore the content db if all of them are in just 1 database. Otherwise you will have to write a custom script in powershell to loop through any sitecollection from root to bottom and backup or restore them. :)
    – Deepu Nair
    Sep 19, 2012 at 15:06
  • great, thanks. One final question. I'd like to show a particular document list on a page in the root site collection. How would you approach showing content from a sub site collection in a parent level site collection page? Sep 19, 2012 at 15:14

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