Plan for capturing and storing deleted objects (Office SharePoint Server)

SharePoint 2007

Updated: April 23, 2009

Applies To: Office SharePoint Server 2007

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Topic Last Modified: 2016-11-14

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A common error in any system occurs when a user accidentally deletes a needed object. Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 provides a Recycle Bin that enables users to recover items they have deleted. To capture sites when they are deleted, you can detect the Web Delete event generated when a site is deleted and then act on the event to archive the site.

Office SharePoint Server 2007 includes a two-stage Recycle Bin. The first-stage Recycle Bin enables end users with appropriate permissions to recover accidentally deleted files, documents, list items, lists, and document libraries from a site. The second-stage Recycle Bin enables site collection administrators to recover items that have been deleted from Recycle Bins.

By default, items in both Recycle Bins are automatically deleted after a specified time period (the default setting is 30 days). If the second-stage Recycle Bin reaches its size limit, the oldest items are also automatically deleted.

Items move from the first stage Recycle Bin to the second-stage Recycle Bin only when the first-stage Recycle Bin is emptied. The time limit for the Recycle Bins applies to the total time after initial deletion—not the time spent in either Recycle Bin stage.

At any time, if the second-stage Recycle Bin reaches its size limit, the oldest items are also automatically deleted.

Recycle Bins are enabled and configured for all sites in a Web application by farm administrators. You can configure Recycle Bins in terms of the length of time that objects are retained, and the percentage of the live site quota that can be used for the second-stage Recycle Bin.

We recommend that you enable Recycle Bins for Web applications that contain any of the following sites:

  • Collaboration sites

  • Enterprise sites such as Document Centers or Record Centers

  • Publishing sites

Capturing and recovering deleted sites requires that you detect and act on the Web Delete event that the system generates when a site is deleted. Acting on the event often involves using the Stsadm export option to back up the site. Microsoft IT (MSIT) has created Microsoft IT Site Delete Capture Feature 1.0 to detect and act on the Web Delete event. When a Web Delete event is detected, the feature archives the site to a file share before it is removed from the configuration database and the content database.

The Microsoft IT Site Delete Capture Feature 1.0 must be installed by a farm administrator and run by an account that is a member of the Administrators group on the local computer. Application configuration for the feature is hosted as a list in a site collection so that site collection administrators can easily manage common feature parameters.

The Microsoft IT Site Delete Capture Feature 1.0 is available from CodePlex governance (

This tool is not part of Office SharePoint Server 2007, and might not be updated. The tool is built on supported Microsoft technologies, but it is not supported by Microsoft.

We recommend that you use the Microsoft IT Site Delete Capture Feature 1.0 to protect sites that are smaller than 12 gigabytes (GB), with the exception of closely-managed sites, such as Record Centers.

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