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Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

  • 1.  Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    Posted 15 days ago
    Hi All:

    Do members of the group have thoughts on the backup and restore abilities in Dynamics 365 F&O?
    Is the native offering sufficient for scenarios beyond the typical disaster loss & full-restore?

    What if we want to restore just customer transactions to a certain point in the past (due to a poorly applied change or process)? Is the restore possible at Data Entity level?

    We are reviewing the AvePoint offerings. Any experiences specifically with AvePoint offerings?

    Thank you


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    Rohit Sharma
    Cincinnati
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    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 2.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    MICROSOFT MVP
    Posted 14 days ago
    Hi Rohit,

    Is your question about Dynamics 365 in the cloud or on-premise? In the cloud, you don't have access yourself and a restore will be point in time. If there are any specific issues, you might be able to work together with Microsoft Support to get specific jobs done, but that might be an exception.

    In my opinion, just restoring customer transactions is not a valid case. Related to these customer transactions, there might be also accounting entries and tax transactions.

    If you have e.g. deleted some sales orders by accident, you might be able to restore a backup in a non-production environment and use data management to get it exported and imported in the production environment. There is no support for importing directly into transaction tables using data management.

    If you have an on-premise environment, you have control yourself. However, manipulating data like your example above is quite dangerous and can cause data inconsistencies.
    To be honest, I never heard of AvePoint, but it will probably not be working on a Microsoft managed cloud environment.

    ------------------------------
    kind regards,

    André Arnaud de Calavon
    Product manager, Microsoft MVP - Microsoft Dynamics Business Solutions
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    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 3.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    Posted 12 days ago
    André
    Thanks for the response. My question is about Dynamics 365 in the cloud.

    I appreciate your comment that "restoring customer transactions is not a valid case".
    Lacking any personal experience working with Microsoft Support to restore data on Cloud deployments, am an trying to draw from scenarios other D365 Cloud customers have experienced, and how they solved for it (without the on-premise control).

    Regards


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    Rohit Sharma
    The Kroger Co.
    Cincinnati
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    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 4.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    MICROSOFT MVP
    Posted 12 days ago
    Hi Rohit,

    I can share one experience with you. Due to a bug, a customer was able to post the retail statements twice. Orders were duplicated which reserved items as well. We were not able to fix all the data ourselves. In this case, Microsoft did create (SQL) scripts to fix the data (delete and update actions). It was then first applied on a staging environment to see if the outcome was correct. Then it was applied on the production environment.
    Other data issues like conversion of master data with a wrong date, was not fixed by Microsoft. This was the consultant to blame. Here, we were able to use data entities to correct the data.

    ------------------------------
    kind regards,

    André Arnaud de Calavon
    Product manager, Microsoft MVP - Microsoft Dynamics Business Solutions
    ------------------------------

    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 5.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted 14 days ago
    NO.  The backup and restore capabilities that D365 (Cloud) offers are not sufficient to protect you.  We discovered this the hard way in the fall.

    An ISV introduced a defect in the attachment functionality that when a user deleted an attachment to a general journal, ALL of the attachments to our journals were deleted.  We lost a massive amount of data.  The deletion event happened in May, but we did not discover the issue until August when our auditors began asking for backup to the journals and the attachments weren't there.  The ISV acknowledged the defect and provided a fix, however the deletion transaction actually timed out and Microsoft's code should have rolled back and our data should have been saved.  Microsoft acknowledge this defect, but has not provided a fix.

    Because we did not discover this issue until well after the 32 days of backups that Microsoft makes available, our data was lost forever.  This revealed to us that 32 days is not sufficient protection and we have begun taking manual backups each month and storing them in the LSC asset library.  This comes with many issues.  Firstly, it is completely manual.  You have to refresh your test system from production, make a backup and give it an appropriate name.  You cannot use any of the automated backup tools available in Azure because Azure does not have any visibility to the production database.  Also, this only protects the Sql Server Database.  The attachment data is stored in an Azure blob.  Microsoft backs up the Azure blob on the same 32 day schedule, but provides no way for you to take your own backups beyond 32 days.  Even it they made the blob accessible for backup, it would always need to be restored with the corresponding Sql Server database.  Even with the monthly backups we are taking, they may be of marginal value.  To access the backup from an Azure instance of D365, the instance would have to be the same version as the database.  It is unclear how long older versions of D365 will be available as a deployment option.   The monthly database backup could be restored to a sql server and queried and perhaps data import jobs could be created to recover your production data that was lost, but it would be a lot of tedious work.

    From this event, Microsoft added the Sql Server Backup automation and backup of the Azure blob to the roadmap, but I doubt it will get a priority.

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    Mark Schurmann
    Accounting Systems Manager
    Automobile Protection Corp
    Norcross GA
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    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 6.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    Posted 12 days ago
    Mark:
    Thanks for the details you have provided.
    Here are my takeaways from your narrative:
    1) Microsoft offer restores for upto 32 days in the past (for D365 F&O)
    2) You are handling your need for backups beyond what Microsoft offers by performing monthly manual backups to LCS asset library to TEST environment (distinct for Sql Server Database & attachment data).
    3) Restore is complex and will need verification
    4) We need to keep a lookout for "Sql Server Backup automation and backup of the Azure blob" on Microsoft's roadmap.

    QUESTION: Did you review any tools (like Avepoint) to help you with your backup & restore needs?

    Thanks


    ------------------------------
    Rohit Sharma
    The Kroger Co.
    Cincinnati
    ------------------------------

    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 7.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    TOP CONTRIBUTOR
    Posted 10 days ago
    One little tweak to your takeaways.  Your attachments are completely unprotected beyond 32 days.  There is no way for you to manually backup the azure blob.

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    Mark Schurmann
    Accounting Systems Manager
    Automobile Protection Corp
    Norcross GA
    ------------------------------

    Conference-AXUG_200x200


  • 8.  RE: Beyond native Dynamics 365 F&O native backup and restore

    Posted 8 days ago
    I suspect that AvePoint cannot cope with F&O and is targeted at 365 i.e. CRM.

    I think the only application consistent strategy is to have additional cloud hosted environment(s), T2 or higher, that you can refresh from PROD via LCS on a schedule of your choosing, say once every 2-3 months and keep those envs up to date with application and platform updates. Not particularly cheap option but potentially useful.

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    Jonathan Howe
    IT Manager
    Cross Manufacturing
    Bath, UK
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    Conference-AXUG_200x200


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