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Use this command to import backups of the database and recover the database status that they contain.

To recover the database completely, first import the most up-to-date complete data backup. If you have carried out one or more incremental data backups after the complete data backup, import them as well. To find out which data backup is the most up-to-date and which incremental data backups were made after it, look into the backup history (see backup_history_open).

After the data backup(s) have been imported, the system will display which log page to start importing the log backups with. You can also find this information in the backup history. On the basis of this information, select the first log backup to be imported. Then import the subsequent log backups in chronological order.

Look into the restart information to determine up to which log page you need to import the log backups. The system displays which log pages are still in the log area (that is beginning with which number). The log pages, which are still in the log area can be restored by the system from that location (see db_restartinfo). You need not import them using a log backup.

The backups to be imported must, in their entirety, comprise all the contents of the database without any gaps. The automatic recovery of the log entries in the log area is only possible if the log volumes are still intact.

If the log volumes contain all the log entries that were written after the last imported data backup was carried out, it is sufficient to import the data backups and then restart the database (see db_restart). The system then imports the content of the log area.

If you need to import more log backups after the data backup(s), the database system recognizes the page starting from which the missing content can be imported from the log area. The log backup import terminates at this point, the system recovers the remaining log pages from the log area and automatically transfers the database to the ONLINE operational state.

You can import data backups that were created sequentially as well as data backups that were created on more than one data carrier in parallel into the database system.

Execute the recover_start command to import data backups and the first log backup. Then import all succeeding log backups with the continuation command recover_replace (after return value -8020.

If you set up a standby database, import all succeeding log backups with recover_start (after return value -7075.

It is possible to recover the database only as far as a certain consistent state before a database or hard disk error occurred. When importing log backups, you can use an option to specify the point in time up to which the system should import the entries from the log backups or from the log area (as the case may be).

If you used a third-party backup tool to make the backups, use that tool to import the backups. To do so, determine the backup ID of the required backup first (see backup_ext_ids_get and backup_ext_ids_list). Database Manager uses this ID to identify the backup that is to be imported.

The reply to the recover_start DBM command displays information about the import of the backup. However, this information is only displayed when the backup has been imported completely, or if the backup was interrupted. This command may therefore take a long time to execute.

You can display the current status of the restore operation with the DBM command recover_state.

Note Note

Pay special attention to the Returncode reply field, which contains a numeric value for a message.

End of the note.

If it is clear from the message number that the restore was interrupted and not finished, continue the session with the continuation command (recover_replace) or terminate it with (recover_cancel).

If the automatic log backup was on before the recovery was started, it is not reactivated automatically after the recovery. To reactivate the automatic log backup function, execute DBM command autolog_on.

If you updated the software after the database state that the recovery takes you back to, you need to reload the system tables to adjust them to the new software version (see load_systab).


  • You have the server permission Recovery.

  • The database is in the ADMIN operational state.

  • You have opened a database session (see db_connect).

  • You have the necessary data backups and log backups to recover the database.

  • If you want to restore the database using a third-party backup tool, your SAP MaxDB software installation must have been configured for the backup tool you want to use (see: Installation Manual, Connecting Third-Party Backup Tools).


Importing a Data Backup

recover_start <medium_name> <backup_type> [LABEL <label>] [EBID <ebid_list>] [AUTOIGNORE]

<ebid_list> :: = <external_backup_ID> | <external_backup_ID>,<external_backup_ID>,...

Importing a Log Backup

recover_start <medium_name> <backup_type> [LABEL <label>] [<nnn> | EBID <ebid_list>] [UNTIL <date> <time>] [AUTOIGNORE]

<ebid_list> :: = <external_backup_ID> | <external_backup_ID>,<external_backup_ID>,...





Backup template from which the backup is to be imported

If importing a backup created on a group of parallel data carriers, specify the name of the group here. (See medium_put, Database Administration, Backup Templates and Data Carriers)


Type of backup to be imported. Possible values are: DATA | PAGES | LOG

DATA: complete data backup

PAGES: incremental data backup

LOG: log backup

LABEL <label>

Backup ID of the data carrier to be imported


List of external backup IDs

If the list contains several backup IDs, separate them by commas.

If backup IDs contain spaces, enclose the list in double quotation marks.


Only for importing a backup that was created with a backup tool:

Name under which the backup is known to the backup tool.


Only for log backup to be imported and only for data carriers of the FILE type:

version number of the log backup on the data carrier to be imported

UNTIL <date> <time> <date> ::= <yyyymmdd> <time> ::= <hhmmss>

Exact time (year, month, day, hour, minutes, seconds) up to which you want to recover


This option is only relevant when restoring from a group of parallel data carriers in the background.

Use it to define that the system should continue restoring automatically from the remaining data carriers as soon as one of the data carriers has been imported completely. This prevents you from having to react interactively (see: recover_config).

Note Note

Use this option only if you have the technical prerequisites for importing all data carriers of a backup simultaneously.

End of the note.



Returncode <value>


Values for the Reply Fields






Start time of the backup


Name of the database computer


Name of the database

Kernel Version

Version of the database kernel

Pages Transferred

Number of pages transferred

Pages Left

Number of pages still to be transferred


Number of data carriers used


Name of the backup template


File or device name


Error message text

See also:

Messages documentation


Backup ID

Is Consistent

Only for data backup: Backup is internally consistent

First LOG Page

For data backup: First page of the log backup to be read

For log backup: First page saved in the log area

Last LOG Page

For log backup only: Last page saved in the log area

DB Stamp 1 Date DB Stamp 1 Time

Time stamp for the first page of the log backup

DB Stamp 2 Date DB Stamp 2 Time

Time stamp for the last page of the log backup

Page Count

Total number of pages backed up

Devices Used

Number of backup devices used

Database ID

Database ID used to identify data and log backups that belong together

If an error occurs, you receive a reply with the following information:

Reply in the Event of an Error




Error Message Number

See: Messages documentation


Description of the error


Cause of error

The following errors (among others) may occur:


Error Message Number

Error message text



ERR_TOOLCHK: the external backup tool was not found

The backup tool could not be found or has been installed incorrectly.


ERR_MEDIUMCHK: the medium cannot be used with this external backup tool

The backup template specified cannot be used with this backup tool.


ERR_PREPARE: prepare of the backup operation failed

The preparations required to use the backup tool could not be completed correctly.


ERR_DBREQ: cannot start database kernel request

The database was unable to start the backup.


ERR_TOOLREQ: cannot start external backup tool correctly

The backup tool could not be started correctly.


ERR_OPCHK: cannot check state of backup operation

Unable to check the status of the database or the backup tool.


ERR_POSTOP: cannot finish backup operation correctly

Although the backup was successful, the required post-processing steps could not be performed.


ERR_BACKUPOP: backup operation was unsuccessful

The backup failed due to a problem with the database or with the backup tool.


ERR_CLEANUP: cannot clean up correctly after backup operation

Although the backup was successful, the system resources used during the check could not be released.

More Information

Database Administration, Restoring Databases