This document provides basic instructions on how to use the Search and Restore functionality within the Backup for Microsoft 365 Customer Self-Service Portal.

Note: The functionality documented below requires a user to have access to Search and Restore access rights.

Search

To search and restore lost data in SharePoint, select the SharePoint tab.

Search

Folder-View

In the folder-view of the site collection, you can either enter text in the search field or browse through the folders.

FolderView

Search to Find

General Search

You can type directly into the search box to initiate a search. To ensure privacy, Backup for Microsoft 365 does not index the content of files or lists. In Backup for Microsoft 365 for SharePoint, you can search for files by file name and can sort the results by:

  • File type
  • File name
  • Location
  • Modified date
  • Modified by

In Backup for Microsoft 365 for SharePoint, you can search for subsites and lists as follows:

  • Site Collections by name
  • Subsites by name
  • The following lists by name or location, and items within each of list by Name, Location, Created by, and Last modified by:
    • Document Library
    • Picture Library
    • Tasks
    • Announcements
    • Contacts
    • Links
  • The following list types have exceptions.
    • Events (Calendar List) can only be restored as a full calendar. Individual items cannot be searched or restored.
    • Generic List items can be searched by the Title field and location.

Note: Currently, the Backup for Microsoft 365  UI has a search result limit of 500 items. Workarounds for this include the use of browsing to narrow the search within a specific folder or Smart Search.

Smart Search

Backup for Microsoft 365 supports a variety of Smart Search queries. To narrow your search to subsites or a specific list type, you can enter the following Smart Search terms.

  • subsite:[subsite name] (e.g. subsite:marketing)
  • folder:[folder name]
  • file:[file name]
  • announcement:[announcement name]
  • contact:[contact last name]

Advanced Search

Backup for Microsoft 365 also supports a variety of Advanced Search capabilities, including Elasticsearch, Wildcards, and RegEx.

Note: For a RegEx search, enter "RegEx:" before the query.

Browse to Find

You can click any data type to browse its contents. Within each, you can sort the items by date modified, file type, and size. To sort, click the column heading.

As you drill into each, your path is tracked at the top of the screen. If you want to navigate back, simply click on the path to open a menu, and select the folder you want to return to.

BrowseToFind

Restore

Individual Item Restore

To restore individual items, select them, and click Restore.

You can restore multiple items, including different item types (e.g. subsites, lists, folders, and files) with a single click.

IndividualRestore

Every SharePoint restoration is a “new item” restore because Backup for Microsoft 365 does not overwrite existing items. This means that if the item being restored already exists, Backup for Microsoft 365 will add the restored item back to the site collection with its name appended with a number in parentheses. On the other hand, if the item does no longer exists, Backup for Microsoft 365 will add the item without appending the name of the file.

Note: When needing to restore more than 200 individual items, it is best practice to perform a bulk restore (e.g. full mailbox, folder, list, etc.) or perform multiple batches of under 200 individual restores. Currently, extremely large batches of individual restores (e.g. over 200) may not complete.

Bulk Restore

Backup for Microsoft 365 also supports the restoration of an entire SharePoint Site Collection, Subsite, folder, or List.

To restore a SharePoint Site Collection:

  1. Click the ellipsis (…) in the Actions column of the site collection you want to restore
  2. Click Restore full Site Collection
    Sharepoint1
  3. Click Confirm to proceed. A full restore of a SharePoint site collection can take a significant amount of time. Once the Site Collection has been restored, a notification will appear in the Alerts tab of the subscription.
    Sharepoint2

To restore an entire SharePoint Subsite, folder, or List, select the item and click Restore.

SharePoint3

When a bulk restore is done with Backup for Microsoft 365, it is merged with existing content. In other words, the data is de-duplicated before it is inserted into the account. Backup for Microsoft 365 does not overwrite or delete data at any time.

Restoring a Site Collection or subsite will restore all the missing items below the Site Collection or subsite. A merge restore will restore the items with the latest version of each file. To restore previous versions, follow the steps below.

Note: SharePoint only supports a single instance of a Site Collection URL. If Backup for Microsoft 365 detects that a Site Collection exists in the SharePoint Recycle Bin, an Error message will appear indicating that the Site Collection needs to be deleted from SharePoint before the restore can begin.

If deleting the Site Collection from the Recycle Bin is not an option, there are two additional ways to resolve this error.

  • Restore the Site Collection from the SharePoint Recycle Bin, then perform a merge restore with Backup for Microsoft 365
  • Wait until the SharePoint Recycle Bin retention period has expired (30 days)

Previous Version Restore

If versioning is enabled and you want to restore previous versions, simply click the file name in the list for the choice to restore previous versions.

Version

Restore Process

Every SharePoint restoration is a “new item” restore because Backup for Microsoft 365 does not overwrite existing items. This means that if the item being restored already exists, Backup for Microsoft 365 will add the restored item back to the site collection with its name appended with a number in parentheses. On the other hand, if the item does no longer exists, Backup for Microsoft 365 will add the item without appending the name of the file.

While the restore is initiated with a single click and Backup for Microsoft 365 makes every effort to restore the content as quickly as possible, the time required to complete the restoration is based on a variety of external factors, including:

  • The overall size of the data set being restored.
  • Microsoft Office 365 throttling.
  • Microsoft Azure throttling.
  • The overall availability of Office 365.

During this time, you can view the status of the restore by hovering over the progress indicator next to the mailbox being restored.

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