About SQL 2005/SQL 2008 database snapshots

SQL 2005/SQL 2008 database snapshots enable you to quickly revert a database back to the state it was in when the database snapshot was created. When you use a database snapshot, a full restore of the host database is not required to revert the database. However, that changes made to the host between the time a database snapshot is created and the point at which it is reverted, are lost.

The Backup Exec SQL Agent works with the SQL 2005 database to create database snapshots, which are read-only, point-in-time copies of an existing host database. When Backup Exec runs a SQL 2005 backup job using the Database Snapshot (SQL 2005 or later) backup method, a request is sent to the host database instructing it to create a database snapshot.

Database snapshots cannot be backed up to storage media. Rather, they are written to a SQL 2005 snapshot file on disk. After running the database snapshot job, Backup Exec creates history and job log information to indicate the job's status.

Because database snapshots cannot be backed up, all database snapshots will be lost if the disk where the host database is installed fails. Therefore database snapshots should not be used as your sole database protection strategy. They should be used in conjunction with an overall Backup Exec database protection strategy that includes full, differential, and transaction log backups of the SQL 2005 database.

For more information, see your Microsoft SQL 2005 documentation.


SQL 2005 database snapshots are not the same as Microsoft Virtual Shadow Copy Service (VSS) snapshots. Whereas VSS snapshots enable you to create point-in-time snapshots of disk volumes and shares, database snapshots enable you to create point-in-time copies of SQL 2005 databases. You cannot use the VSS option in Backup Exec's Advanced Open File Option to create SQL 2005 database snapshots.


SQL database snapshot catalog information that refers to deleted database snapshots is periodically removed from the catalogs. If backup media is re-cataloged, the database snapshot catalog information will be periodically removed again.

More Information

Using the database snapshot (SQL 2005 or later) backup method