Restore Database (General Page)

Use the General page to specify information about the target and source databases for a database-restore operation.

To use SQL Server Management Studio to restore a database backup


When you specify a restore task by using SQL Server Management Studio, you can generate the corresponding Transact-SQL RESTORE script by clicking Script and then selecting a destination for the script.


If the database being restored does not exist, the user must have CREATE DATABASE permissions to be able to execute RESTORE. If the database exists, RESTORE permissions default to members of the sysadmin and dbcreator fixed server roles and the owner (dbo) of the database.

RESTORE permissions are given to roles in which membership information is always readily available to the server. Because fixed database role membership can be checked only when the database is accessible and undamaged, which is not always the case when RESTORE is executed, members of the db_owner fixed database role do not have RESTORE permissions.



The options of the Restore from panel identify the location of the backup sets for the database and which backup sets you want to restore.




Select the database to restore from the drop-down list. The list contains only databases that have been backed up according to the msdb backup history.


Select the logical or physical backup devices (tapes or files) that contain the backup or backups you want to restore. This is required if the database backup was taken on a different instance of SQL Server.

To select one or more logical or physical backup devices, click the browse button which opens the Select backup devices dialog box. There, you can select up to 64 devices that belong to a single media set. Tape devices must be physically connected to the computer that is running the instance of SQL Server. A backup file can be on a local or remove disk device. For more information, see Backup Devices (SQL Server).

When you exit the Select backup devices dialog box, the selected device will appear as read-only values in the Device list.


Select the database name from which the backups should be restored from the dropdown list.


This list is only available when Device is selected. Only databases that have backups on the selected devices will be available.


The options of the Restore to panel identify the database and restore point.




Enter the database to restore in the list. You can enter a new database or choose an existing database from the drop-down list. The list includes all databases on the server, excluding the system databases master and tempdb.


To restore a password-protected backup, you must use the RESTORE statement.

Restore to

The Restore to box will be set "To the last backup taken" by default. You can also click Timeline to show the Backup Timeline dialog box, which displays the database backup history in the form of a timeline. Click Timeline to designate a specific datetime to which you want to restore the database. The database will then be restored to the state it was in at this specified point in time. See Backup Timeline.

Restore Plan



Backup sets to restore

Displays the backup sets available for the specified location. Each backup set, the result of a single backup operation, is distributed across all of the devices in the media set. By default, a recovery plan is suggested to achieve the goal of the restore operation that is based on the selection of the required backup sets. SQL Server Management Studio uses the backup history in msdb to identify which backups are required to restore a database, and creates a restore plan. For example, for a database restore, the restore plan selects the most recent full database backup followed by the most recent subsequent differential database backup, if any. Under the full recovery model, the restore plan then selects all subsequent log backups.

To override the suggested recovery plan, you can change the selections in the grid. Any backups that depend on a deselected backup are deselected automatically.




The selected check boxes indicate the backup sets to be restored.


The name of the backup set.


The backed-up component: Database, File, or <blank> (for transaction logs).


The type of backup performed: Full, Differential, or Transaction Log.


The name of the Database Engine instance that performed the backup operation.


The name of the database involved in the backup operation.


The position of the backup set in the volume.

First LSN

The log sequence number of the first transaction in the backup set. Blank for file backups.

Last LSN

The log sequence number of the last transaction in the backup set. Blank for file backups.

Checkpoint LSN

The log sequence number (LSN) of the most recent checkpoint at the time the backup was created.

Full LSN

The log sequence number of the most recent full database backup.

Start Date

The date and time when the backup operation began, presented in the regional setting of the client.

Finish Date

The date and time when the backup operation finished, presented in the regional setting of the client.


The size of the backup set in bytes.

User Name

The name of the user who performed the backup operation.


The date and time the backup set expires.

The checkboxes are only enabled when the Manual Selection box is checked. This allows you to select which backup-sets are to be restored.

When the Manual Selection box is checked, the accuracy of the Restore Plan is checked each time it is modified. If the sequence of backups is incorrect, an error message will appear.

Verify Backup Media

Calls a RESTORE VERIFY_ONLY statement on the selected backup-sets.


This is a long-running operation, and its progress can be tracked and cancelled by using the Progress Monitor on the Dialog Framework.

This button allows you to check the integrity of the selected backup files prior to restoring them.

When checking the integrity of backup sets, the progress status at the bottom left of the dialog box will read "Verifying" rather than "Executing."

Compatibility Support

In SQL Server 2012, you can restore a user database from a database backup that was created by using SQL Server 2005 or a later version. However, backups of master, model and msdb that were created by using SQL Server 2005 or SQL Server 2008 cannot be restored by SQL Server 2012. Also, backups created in SQL Server 2012 cannot be restored by any earlier version of SQL Server.


No SQL Server backup be restored to an earlier version of SQL Server than the version on which the backup was created.

SQL Server 2012 uses a different default path than earlier versions. Therefore, to restore a database that was created in the default location for SQL Server 2005 or SQL Server 2008 backups, you must use the MOVE option.

After you restore a SQL Server 2005 or SQL Server 2008 database to SQL Server 2012, the database is automatically upgraded. Typically, the database becomes available immediately. However, if a SQL Server 2005 database has full-text indexes, the upgrade process either imports, resets, or rebuilds them, depending on the setting of the Full-Text Upgrade Option server property. If the upgrade option is set to Import or Rebuild, the full-text indexes will be unavailable during the upgrade. Depending upon the amount of data being indexed, importing can take several hours, and rebuilding can take up to ten times longer. Note also that when the upgrade option is set to Import, if a full-text catalog is not available, the associated full-text indexes are rebuilt.

See Also


Restore a Database to a Marked Transaction (SQL Server Management Studio)


RESTORE Arguments (Transact-SQL)


Backup Devices (SQL Server)

Restore a Backup from a Device (SQL Server)

Restore a Transaction Log Backup (SQL Server)

View the Contents of a Backup Tape or File (SQL Server)

View the Properties and Contents of a Logical Backup Device (SQL Server)

Media Sets, Media Families, and Backup Sets (SQL Server)

Apply Transaction Log Backups (SQL Server)