stsadm can inadvertently delete a root site collection if erroneous URL path used

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Source: Microsoft Support
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Symptom


After using stsadm -o restore with the -overwrite parameter and getting an error you notice the top level site collection from the site collection you were trying to restore is deleted.

    ERROR:
    No content databases are available for this operation. Create a content database , and then try the operation again. To create a content database, click "Content databases" on the Application Management page, select the Web application to use, and then click "Add a content database".



Going to the now dead root site you get: 
    404 FILE NOT FOUND
Cause


This can happen if you pass an improper URL path with stsadm -o restore with the -overwrite parameter.



EXAMPLE:
Correct - stsadm

Incorrect - stsadm -o restore -url http://SERVERNAME/site/sitename -filename DRIVE:\file.bak -overwrite

Incorrect - stsadm -o restore -url http://SERVERNAME/sites/sitename/web -filename DRIVE:\file.bak -overwrite

When we pass the -overwrite parameter with stsadm it deletes the destionation site collection and tries to accomplish the restore. If the URL path is incorrect then the deletion and restore is attempted against the only valid path which is the root site collection of the URL.





NOTES:

in example 1 the Missing 's' in the word 'sites' along URL path will cause the root site collection to be deleted.

in example 2 the path is not a site collection and will attempt to restore to the site collection at http://SERVERNAME/sites/sitename
Resolution
More Information
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Article ID: 968474 - Last Review: 01/15/2015 11:01:17 - Revision: 5.0

Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services 3.0

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