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Restore from a backup

Tableau Server on Windows now includes Tableau Services Manager (TSM), which replaces the Configuration Utility and the command line tool. If you need help for an earlier version of Tableau Server, see the Tableau Help page.

Use the tsm maintenance restore command to restore your Tableau Server data. You might do this if you had a system failure and need to restore your data, if you need to switch back to a previous version of Tableau Server (for example, if there is a problem with an upgrade), or if you are moving Tableau Server to new hardware. You can use the tsm maintenance restore command to restore Tableau Server backups created using tabadmin backup and tsm maintenance backup. Database backups made in other ways, and virtual machine snapshots are not valid sources for restoring Tableau Server.

When you use tsm maintenance restore to restore your Tableau data, data extract files and the contents of the PostgreSQL database are overwritten with the content in the backup file (.tsbak). If you are running a distributed installation of Tableau Server, perform the restore on the initial node or where ever the TSM Controller is running.

You can only restore from a backup that has the same type of identity store as the running server. For example, a backup from a server using local authentication can be restored to a Tableau Server initialized with local authentication, but a backup from a server using Active Directory authentication cannot be restored to a server initialized with local authentication.

Restore Tableau Server from a backup file

Note: This operation includes steps that you may need to perform using the TSM command line. To use the TSM CLI you need administrator access to the command line on one of the nodes in your installation and TSM administrator credentials to run TSM commands.

  1. (Optional) Copy the .tsbak file to the default file location.

    The restore command expects a backup file in the directory defined in the TSM basefilepath.backuprestore variable. By default:

    C:\ProgramData\Tableau\Tableau Server\data\tabsvc\files\backups\

    For more information about file paths and how to change them, see tsm File Paths.

    Note: If you are restoring a backup that was copied into the backups folder, ensure that the Run As service account, which can be found in TSM Web UI under Security, has at least Read access to the backup file. Otherwise, the restore process may not be able to unzip the backup file and the restore will fail.

  2. Stop the server. At a command prompt, type:

    tsm stop

  3. Restore from a backup file. At a command prompt, type:

    tsm maintenance restore --file <file_name>

    In the above line, replace <file_name> with the name of the backup file you want to restore from.

  4. Restart the server:

    tsm start

When you restore a .tsbak file, Tableau Server automatically creates a copy of its current data folder, names it tabsvc.bak-*, and places it in C:\ProgramData\Tableau\Tableau Server\data. This folder is an emergency backup of Tableau Server that Tableau Support may be able to use in case something goes wrong during backup restoration.

When the restore is complete and you have verified that Tableau Server is running correctly with all the expected data, it's safe to remove any tabsvc.bak-* folders from C:\ProgramData\Tableau\Tableau Server\data to free additional disk space. In Tableau Server clusters, tabsvc.bak-* folders are created on each machine running Tableau Server.

Important: Only remove the tabsvc.bak-* folders. Do not remove the tabsvc folder, which is also located under C:\ProgramData\Tableau\Tableau Server\data. It contains necessary Tableau Server data.