February 21, 2012

Creating web application from existing content database

There are situations where you want to propagate one SharePoint web application
to some other farm/machine. I feel the fastest way is to take content database backup
and restore it in your destination farm. I have done so in last couple of weeks
and I have leaned how to quickly do that.
Here are quick notes from my experience:

I was provided with content database backup and source code. That makes be able
to restore site and generate wsps from source code.
Creating content database from backup:

Go to your database server and do following:
  • Create a blank database that will be used as content database Restore a database
  • using content database back up from source farm.
Creating a web application:
  • Go to sharepoint central administration and create a new web application
  • While creating a new web application, use existing content database in database
  • Sometimes if your database is too large, web application creation takes too long
    and times out. Don't worry at all. web application is still created successfully.
    It happened to me 4 times out of 5.
Validating the web application:
  • Go to sharepoint central administration, click on application management. In "Databases"
    section you will find "Manage content databases"
  • Choose your application and it will show database status and number of site collections.
    If you are not sure how many site collections are there in backup, anything greater
    than 0 is good news.
Configure web application to work properly:
we are almost done now. Do following:
  • Go to sharepoint central administration
  • Click on "Application Management"
  • In "Site Collections" section click on "Change site collection administrators"
  • choose your web application set proper data in site admins.
Additional optional steps:
After performing all the above steps, it is still possible that you are not able
to access your web application.
  • Last thing to do is to install and deploy wsp by using stsadm or your favorite method.
If you have any questions you can reach out our SharePoint Consulting team here.