Ways to improve native SQL database backup and restore times:

  • Backup your databases with compression: I/O is typically the bottleneck, this shifts some of the work to CPU.
  • Change your storage configuration: Store backups locally or on higher-performance SAN
  • Backup your databases to multiple files (stripes): This might depends on your specific storage and network configuration, but I’ve found 4- and 8-stripe backups and restores in our environment complete 2x-10x faster than single-stripe backups. Certainly worth some testing.
  • Make sure instant file initialization is enabled: Helps you carve out the space for restoring files very quickly
  • Reduce the size of the database: Drop old tables, etc. When possible, of course.
  • Shrink away empty space: All the appropriate warnings and caveats about shrinking apply, of course.
  • Enable page or row compression: Makes the database files smaller, so less to write upon restore.
Last modified: May 31, 2019



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