Protecting and recovering data stored in InfoPath form templates (Office SharePoint Server)

Applies To: Office SharePoint Server 2007

This Office product will reach end of support on October 10, 2017. To stay supported, you will need to upgrade. For more information, see , Resources to help you upgrade your Office 2007 servers and clients.


Topic Last Modified: 2016-11-14

In this article:

  • Versioning

  • Deletion protection

  • Backup and recovery

This topic provides recommendations for protecting and recovering data stored in InfoPath form templates.


  • **Content versioning   **Recommended. Be sure to provide site owners with a clear understanding of the amount of space available relative to the number of versions, and work with site owners to ensure that versioned sites are actively monitored and managed.


    If you upgrade a form template, and then open a previously-created XML file in a library, the previous version can only be opened using Microsoft Office InfoPath 2007, rather than a Web browser.

  • **Database snapshot   **Not recommended. Database snapshots are recommended only for environments in which you want to protect the look and feel of a site as versions change over time.

Deletion protection

  • **Recycle Bin   **Recommended. Users can recover filled-in forms and user-deployed form templates from the recycle bin

  • Site capture   Recommended. Protecting collaboration sites against accidental deletion is strongly recommended.

Backup and recovery

Protecting and recovering data stored in Microsoft Office InfoPath 2007 form templates requires planning protections beyond those provided by the backup and recovery functionality provided by Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007. This is because some Office InfoPath 2007 form template data is stored in the configuration database, and because your form templates can store and retrieve data from external sources.

Protecting information stored in the configuration database

The configuration database and the Central Administration content database contain computer-specific information. Therefore, you can restore them only to an environment that you configure to be precisely the same, including all software updates, server names, and numbers of servers.

In many circumstances, you might be able to restore the configuration database and the Central Administration content database. However, we recommend that you always assume that you will not be able to restore the configuration database and the Central Administration content database. For more information about protecting the configuration database, see Choose what to protect (Office SharePoint Server).

Office InfoPath Forms Services stores the following information in the configuration database:

  • Administrator-approved form templates, such as workflow templates.

  • Administrator-approved data connections.


    Form templates and data connections deployed by end-users are stored in the content database, and are backed up and recovered by using the built-in backup and recovery tools.

  • Farm-level settings for Office InfoPath Forms Services, such as exempt user agents.

We recommend that administrators save a copy of every administrator-deployed form template and data connection file for backup and recovery purposes. We also recommend that you document the settings for Office InfoPath Forms Services.

Use the following Stsadm command-line operations to determine which Office InfoPath Forms Services content is stored in the configuration database.

Object Stsadm operation

Form templates

stsadm -o enumformtemplates. For more information, see Enumformtemplates: Stsadm operation (Office SharePoint Server).

Data connections

stsadm -o enumdataconnectionfiles. For more information, see Enumdataconnectionfiles: Stsadm operation (Office SharePoint Server).

Exempt user agents

stsadm -o enumexemptuseragents. For more information, see Enumexemptuseragents: Stsadm operation (Office SharePoint Server).

Protecting external data

Any time you retrieve data that is stored externally to Office SharePoint Server 2007, or save InfoPath forms data to an external database, be sure to include that data in your backup and recovery planning. The built-in backup and recovery tools provided with Office SharePoint Server 2007 will not protect the data.

If you have created form templates that store data in a database, include the database in your backup and recovery strategy.

Recovering Office InfoPath Forms Services

To recover a server running Office InfoPath Forms Services, plan to perform the following process:

  1. Reinstall Office SharePoint Server 2007 on the front-end Web server.

  2. Restore the content database backups.


    If you need to restore your data to another URL, you must run the downloadable Server Upgrade and Migration Tool for Microsoft Office InfoPath. For more information, see InfoPath 2007 Tool: Server Upgrade and Migration Tool for Microsoft Office InfoPath (

  3. Re-apply the farm-level settings for Office InfoPath Forms Services. For more information, see Configure InfoPath Forms Services for Office SharePoint Server.

  4. Re-deploy your data connection files and your administrator-deployed form templates. For more information, see Deploy administrator-approved form templates (Office SharePoint Server).

Download this book

This topic is included in the following downloadable book for easier reading and printing:

See the full list of available books at Downloadable content for Office SharePoint Server 2007.

See Also


Plan for versioning (Office SharePoint Server)
Plan for capturing and storing deleted objects (Office SharePoint Server)
Choose backup and recovery tools (Office SharePoint Server)