When a SQL database is marked as suspected and is unaccessible it usually has been damaged by a server crash, an unplanned database termination, or a lack of server disk space.

Fixing the primary cause often is not enough to bring it back to normal. The primary filegroup of the database might be damaged and the transaction log file missing or turned corrupt.

Stellar Repair for MS SQL promises to fix such issues and restore the database in its original form using advanced recovery algorithms automatically. Admins can speed up the manual recovery process a lot especially on slower servers.

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Like other Stellar products you can use the software for free to find out if it might be of help in your particular case and purchase the paid version to save recovered SQL Tables and database files.

The software supports MS SQL Server 2019, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2008 R2, 2008, and earlier versions.

We have put Stellar Repair for MS SQL to the test with a corrupt MDF file to find out what this recovery tool is capable of.

Free version: Installation, scan, and preview

Installation of Stellar Repair for MS SQL takes just a few minutes and then you are ready to go for your first scan. You will have to stop your MS SQL server and copy the database to a different location accessible by the software. After a hopefully successful fix, you then can move the restored copy of your database back to your SQL server.

Stellar Repair for MS SQL - First start

Stellar Repair for MS SQL uses a two steps approach consisting of scanning and recovering into a database preview and an export feature that requires the paid version. To start the scan you simply need to select the database file in MDF or NDF format and hit the repair button.

If you have several database files you might use the search feature to auto-scan a specific directory for supported database filetypes.

All supported database files will be shown in a table with their sizes and datestamps which helps if you are unsure about which version you want to restore. Once selected, you can start the repair procedure by hitting the button on the lower right.

Before the actual scan starts you can choose between a standard or the advanced scan method which takes substantially more time but gives better results. For huge databases, you might want to try your luck with standard mode. If time is no factor, jumping directly into advanced mode might be the better choice. Stellar Repair for MS SQL, unfortunately, does not provide technical details about the differences between both methods.

During the scan, you can follow the progress in the status bar at the lower end which might give you some idea about how long the whole scan might take. Stellar Repair for MS SQL won´t provide a time estimate, but if you know the total number of all database records the number shown in the lower right corner might allow for an educated guess.

After the scan is finished you can browse and search the existing tables. If you are happy with the found and recovered data. To save the repaired database you will have to purchase the paid version.

Saving a restored database 

Stellar Repair for MS SQL allows you to save the repaired SQL database file in four different formats — MDF, CSV, XLS, and HTML. For MDF you can choose between saving into a new database file or uploading the recovered file into a live database directly after providing the required server credentials.

CSV, HTML, and XLS files you can write directly to your hard disk after setting a destination folder.

With our corrupted sample file in MDF format, Stellar Repair for MS SQL had no problem recovering the existing tables which we were able to review easily with Microsoft Excel. If you are not 100% sure if the recovery has been successful, this might be the best way to proceed instead of directly restoring the live database online as the preview-feature of Stellar Repair for MS SQL is quite limited and less convenient than Microsoft Excel with its advanced search and filter capabilities.

Conclusion

Stellar Repair for MS SQL is a convenient and functional alternative to manual and server-based recovery procedures such as the DBCC CHECKDB command in emergency mode. The software is particularly helpful with huge database files whose recovery would take ages on slower servers that already run at their limit. If recovery is possible depends on the particular case.

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