I have seen a few posts about backing and restoring SharePoint content databases from both Central Admin and using PowerShell. My question is relatively simple I hope.....

There are a number of databases on my SharePoint instance I understand. Two of which are WSS_Content and WSS_Content{xxx-xxx-xxx}(GUID)

Would it suffice to back up these databases 'only' or just one of them to recover a full server farm either in PowerShell or from Central Admin?

There are maintenance tasks running on the server and also Farm backups carried out but in the interest of saving disk space and speed of recovery and overall quality is there a simple way to do it?


1 Answer 1


WSS_Content and WSS_Content{xxx-xxx-xxx}(GUID) may refer to two different content databases in your farm. Depending on how they are configured they may belong to two site collections in a single web application or two different web applications. Moreover, for a full farm backup, you may need to back up other databases, most importantly the config database and service application databases.

  • Thank you. To clarify there is only a single web application with a single site collection up to now.
    – Splunk
    Feb 18, 2014 at 12:35
  • So, where do you want to restore the content database. Can you provide more details? Feb 18, 2014 at 12:39
  • Say user X deletes a library from a sub site or generally breaks something. Or the wrong sub site gets deleted (I don't issue permissions policy, just set them as told), then restoring the content database is a simple possible fix as opposed to restoring farm/granular backups? Sorry I've been issued this platform as my primary work stream.
    – Splunk
    Feb 18, 2014 at 16:20
  • Yes, in that case you can take regular backups of content database and restore it when needed. Feb 18, 2014 at 16:23
  • Thank @Nadeem. Taking into account my scenario - do I need both content database backing up? Or can I get away with just the larger of the two? The one with the GUID?
    – Splunk
    Feb 20, 2014 at 9:18

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