How to Restore Backup on Existing Database in SQL Server

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Summary: SQL Server databases get corrupted or damaged for many reasons, like power failure, hardware crashes, buggy code, etc. Thus, it has always been suggested to back up an SQL database. However, users use SQL to manage and organize data because it is the most common relational database management system. It contains data that is of critical importance for every organization. You can easily make queries, manipulate and define data, and provide access control to others. Apart from this, it also facilitates a retrieving option of specific information from databases that are further used for analysis. But sometimes, when your SQL Server database does not work again due to the above-mentioned reasons, then we have to restore backup on existing database in SQL Server.

In this article, we will guide you on how to perform SQL Server restore backup to a new database process and discuss the different reasons behind the SQL Server not working. Otherwise, you can also use the DRS SQL Database Recovery Tool, which helps users to recover data from corrupted SQL database files.

What causes SQL Server database corruption?

Below are the points that will give you an overview of SQL Database Corruption Causes:

  • Hardware Failure
  • Sudden or Accidentally shutdown of your system
  • Bugs or errors in your SQL Server database files.
  • Few changes in the SQL Server account.
  • Updation of SQL Server versions
  • Due to attacks of malware or viruses
  • MDF and NDF file header corruption

Methods to Restore Backup on Existing Database in SQL Server

The manual methods to restore SQL databases on existing databases are described below. But before going to that, let’s check out the prerequisites you need to fulfill.

Prerequisites Before Overwriting Backup file over Existing SQL Database

  • Before restoring the .bak File in SQL Server, you must stop all the active connections.
  • Ensure your SQL server versions are similar during the backup file restoration.
  • You must have an SQL server database backup file and transaction log file to proceed with the process.
  • You need admin rights in SQL Server.

Method 1: Restore database from backup Using SSMS

SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) is a built-in environment of SQL infrastructure to access, configure, manage, administer, and develop all components of SQL Server. In addition, you can also use this to restore the SQL Server database from the backup file on the existing database. Follow the steps below:

  • Open SQL Server Management Studio(SSMS) on your computer.
  • Go to the Object Explorer.
  • Here, select and click on the server name to expand it.
  • Please select the desired database name and right-click it to choose the Restore database option.
  • In the Restore database wizard, go to the General page>>Source section and select the Device option. Click on the three dots in the browser to add the SQL server database backup file(.bak). Choose File as Backup media type on the Select backup devices wizard by clicking on the Add option.
  • After that, click Ok.
  • Once you do, the Restore Database wizard again opens on your screen.
  • In the Device and Destination sections, you will find the database name that is restored.
  • Now, go to Options.
  • In the Restore options section, check the ‘Overwrite the existing database option to Replace the existing one with a backup.
  • After that, in the Recovery database section, check the Leave the database ready to use by rolling back uncommitted transactions. Additional transaction logs cannot be restored. (RESTORE WITH RECOVERY)” and press the Ok button.
  • Here, you will find that the SQL server database restoration process has started.
  • Once a message pop-up: The restore of the database completed successfully. Click Ok.

Method 2: Overwrite existing SQL database Using T-SQL Command

  1. Start the Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio on your system.
  2. Then connect to the SQL Server instance and click on the New Query option.
  3. Here, enter the given command to restore backup on an existing database in SQL Server.

SQL Server Management Studio query

These two methods help you effectively restore database backup files on the existing database. However, at a certain point, they are not favorable for you like:

  • If you do not have SQL Server admin privileges.
  • If your SQL Server database files are corrupted or damaged.
  • For performing these procedures, users require too much technical expertise.
  • The process is too lengthy and time-consuming.

Method 3: Professional Solutions to Restore backup on Existing Database

If you have corrupt or damaged SQL backup database files, then these manual methods do not work for you, and you need to use some expert-suggested solution like DRS SQL Backup Recovery Tool. The software allows you to repair your corrupt or damaged SQL backup Database files(.bak) and extracts .mdf and .ldf files from it. However, if you want to restore these extracts .mdf and .ldf files into the SQL Server again, you can go for the SQL database Recovery Software.

Software Working to Repair Corrupt .bak files

  1. Install & Run DRS SQL Backup Recovery.
  2. Choose the scanning mode as per the corruption level.
  3. Select your .bak file to repair and extract files.
  4. Here, you can also select the split or compressed .bak files.
  5. Once you select the files, choose the saving location.
  6. Click on the Extract files button to proceed further.
  7. The software shows you the selected file information.
  8. Click the Save button to extract .mdf & .ldf files from .bak file.


Restoring the backup file on the existing database in SQL Server is simpler if you perform the steps of the above-mentioned methods correctly. But What if you have corrupt SQL backup data files(.bak)? Then you need to go for a professional solution, which will help you to extract .mdf and .ldf files from corrupted .bak files.

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