Restore a farm after a configuration database problem (Windows SharePoint Services)
Updated: July 21, 2008
Applies To: Windows SharePoint Services 3.0
This article provides information and procedural steps for restoring your Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 environment when the information in the configuration database is not synchronized with the actual configuration of the farm. This can happen if configuration changes are made and these changes are not recorded in the configuration database — for example, if you move a content database from one Web application to another without detaching and re-attaching the database by using the Central Administration Web site. Similarly, this can happen if you use the Stsadm command-line tool to move the content database, but you do not use the preparetomove operation before you move the content database.
Actions that might lead to a configuration database that is not synchronized with the farm include:
Improperly moving a content database.
Deleting a Web site by using Internet Information Services Manager instead of removing it by using Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 tools.
Making configuration changes to your farm by some means other than Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 tools.
The symptoms of a configuration database that is not synchronized with the farm include:
Sites that should be available are not available (user sees a 404 error in the browser), but a site with that URL cannot be created.
Sites that should not be available — that is, they were removed — are available.
Configurations in Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 are set in Central Administration and stored in the configuration database and the Central Administration content database. Although the configuration database and the Central Administration content database can be backed up, restoring backups of the configuration database and the Central Administration content database taken from a running farm is not supported.
If the configuration database or the Central Administration content database of a farm is not synchronized, you must re-create both databases by using the Psconfig command-line tool.
We strongly recommend that you document all configuration settings and all your customizations so that you can correctly re-create the databases. If you have not documented these settings, you must re-create them to the best of your ability when you re-create the configuration database and the Central Administration content database.
Configuration settings in Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 that you should document include:
Application pool settings.
External service connection settings.
Alternate access mapping settings.
Recycle Bin settings and other Web application general settings.
Usage analysis processing settings.
Diagnostic logging settings.
Content deployment settings.
Timer job settings.
HTML viewer settings.
Database names and locations.
Web application names and databases. Be sure to document the content database names associated with each Web application.
Default quota templates.
Blocked file types.
Membership in the Administrators group on the local computer is the minimum required to complete these procedures.
Farm recovery overview
The following list provides the basic steps to recover your farm after a configuration database problem.
On the destination server:
Run Setup and select the Complete server installation type.
Run the SharePoint Products and Technologies Configuration Wizard to:
Create a new farm.
Create a new configuration database.
Configure the farm services.
Create Web applications.
Follow the procedure for moving databases to a different database server in Move all databases (Windows SharePoint Services 3.0).