Backup and Restore SharePoint Services 3.0 sites

I tried to make a copy of one of our SharePoint sites.
It took some help to figure out how to this. So for the future, lets put it here.

The  thing you should check are the version numbers of the original and target SharePoint servers are the same.
They MUST be the same.
In my case the SharePoint Services 3.0 was updated with SP1. The version number is :
You can check this at “Central Administration, Site Actions, Site Settings”.
The site specifications are at the top of the page. Here you will find the version number.


First the backup of the original site. The easiest way to do this is with stsadm.exe. This command line util will let you schedule your backup of SharePoint Services 3.0.

stsadm -o backup -filename “\\backupserver\share\sitename – %date:~-2%%date:~4,2%%date:~7,2%.dat -url http://sitename

This should give you a full backup of your SharePoint in a single file.
This file will get the name “sitename – YYMMDD.dat” where YY is the year, MM the month and DD the day of the backup.
This is very handy to put in a scheduled task and keep multiple backups of your site.
A disadvantage of this scheduled task is that you need the control the amount of backup files you create.
This can also be done with a simple batch file.

forfiles /d -7 /m *.dat /c “cmd /c del @file”

So with the backup behind us, now the main challenge.


As mentioned before it is VERY important to get the same version number on the target SharePoint Server.
Before you go further, make sure the versions are the same.

First we need to create a new web application. For now just take the servername as the name for the web application. For example http://newserver.

stsadm -o restore -filename “\\backupserver\share\sitename – 100322.dat -url http://newserver

The site is now on the new server, to make it accessible to a url of your choice, lets add the new URL to the SharePoint site.
To do this lets go over to “Central Administration, Operations, Alternative allocations for Access”
Choose at the top right for ( yellow drop-down menu ) SharePoint – 80. This way the Central Administration page will not  be changed so nothing terrible can happen to it. 🙂
Now click on “Add internal URL” and add the URL of your choice.
To make the new URL the standard, click on “Edit public URL”
Switch the standard URL with your chosen URL.

Now the only thing that’s left is the third party software to install.
Personally I use Smiling Goat Feed Reader for RSS feeds on SharePoint Services sites.

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