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Monday, 8 March 2021

Stellar Toolkit for MS SQL - Software Review

As a SQL database administrator, I am responsible for maintaining our organization's SQL Server and databases. But despite implementing best database maintenance practices, including backups and performing DBCC CHECKDB integrity checks, I still run into database issues. Among these, corruption of SQL Server database is one of the most common issues that I've encountered as a DBA.

My recent experience with database corruption, which nearly made me lose my data due to corrupted database backup, made me think about an alternative approach. This was when I came across Stellar Toolkit for MS SQL, a software package comprising tools to repair corrupt SQL database, extract data from a corrupted backup file, and reset password of the database files.

Today, I'll be sharing my experience with Stellar Toolkit for MS SQL. For this review, follow the step-wise instructions below once you have downloaded and installed the software:

Stellar Repair for MS SQL

  • Launch Stellar Toolkit for MS SQL. This will open the following window:


  • Select 'Repair MS SQL Database.' The SQL repair software main interface opens with an instruction. The instruction suggests stopping the SQL server and creating a copy of the database (.mdf) file to be repaired. After creating the MDF file copy, you can restart the server and repair the db copy. 

  • Clicking OK opens a 'Select Database' window. Click on 'Browse' to select the corrupt MDF database file that you want to repair. If you're not aware of the file's location, click 'Search' to locate and select the file. After selecting the corrupt database file, click 'Repair' to begin repairing it.

  • Once the repair process is complete, a 'Repair complete' message box appears along with a preview of all recoverable database objects and the repair process's log report.


  • After verifying the recoverable data, clicking 'Save' on the File menu opens a Save Database dialog box with options to save the repaired file. The file can be saved in multiple file formats, such as MDF, CSV, HTML, or XLS. To proceed with saving the file, you'll need to connect to an instance of SQL Server to create a new database or overwrite an existing db. Finally, click the 'Save’ button for saving the repaired SQL Server database file to the selected location. 

Stellar Password Recovery for MS SQL

The toolkit's second tool is useful for admins who have lost or forgotten the password of their SQL database files. It helps in resetting the password of a protected database in just a few clicks; here’s how:

  • Select ‘Recover MS SQL Password’ from the main interface. This will open the Stellar Password Recovery for MS SQL interface as shown below:


  • Next, all you need to do is click ‘Browse’ to select your SQL database file (MDF), and then click the ‘Change Password’ button. This will reset the password of the selected database file. 

Note: You may not be able to problem selecting the backup (.bak) file if any MDF file is in use. So, make sure to stop the SQL Server service before resetting the password.

After resetting the password, exit the Password Recovery tool, restart the SQL Server service, and then try connecting to your server instance using the reset password. 

Stellar Backup Extractor for MS SQL

Another tool available in the toolkit is the backup file extractor. It helps recover data from a corrupted SQL database backup (.bak) file. Also, the tool provides different scan modes to perform quick or deep recovery of backup data.

The steps to recover data from corrupted backup file are as follows:

Click ‘Extract from MS SQL Backup’ to open the Stellar Backup Extractor window. The window opens with options to browse or search the corrupt backup (.bak) file. Once the file is selected, click Scan to initiate the scanning process.

  • The tool then asks to select an appropriate scan mode to perform the recovery. It recommends running the ‘Standard Scan’ to analyze a corrupted SQL backup file quickly. If you’re not satisfied with the Standard Scan results, choose ‘Advanced Scan’ for a severely corrupted backup file. After selecting the desired scan mode, click ‘OK’.

  • A window opens asking to select the type of backup you want to recover. 

  • Once you’ve selected the backup type, click Next. A ‘Repair Complete’ dialog box opens on successful completion of the SQL backup process. Click ‘OK’ to preview the recoverable data along with log report of the entire backup recovery process.  

  • After verifying the recoverable backup file data, click ‘Save’ on the ‘File’ menu to save the recovered file.

Conclusion

Stellar Toolkit for MS SQL is an effective utility that you can rely on to resolve major database issues. Having this tool at your disposal can help you reduce downtime associated with troubleshooting SQL database issues, as it provides tools to perform database repair, backup recovery, and reset passwords in a single interface. 

Tuesday, 5 January 2021

Stellar Repair for MS SQL - Product Review

Stellar Data Recovery has an amazing product designed for the Microsoft SQL Server platform to provide data recovery solutions where databases or backups get corrupted, login passwords are unknown, and other all is lost scenarios like deletions. It’s inevitable and undeniable that most SQL Database administrators and developers would one day face one or more of these questions:

  • Do you have a corrupt database file and need to recover the data?
  • Do you have a corrupt backup file that you are unable to restore?
  • Are you missing records from a deletion of table, entries, and other database objects?
  • Did you forget or do not know the password to connect to your SQL Server instance?

If you need a resilient solution for any of these mentioned issues above or just one or two, then look no further than the Stellar Repair for MS SQL.

The software is available in three editions:

  1. Technician Edition: Database Repair
  2. Platinum Edition: Database and Backup Repair
  3. Toolkit Edition: Database and Backup Repair with Password Recovery

The Stellar Repair for MSSQL provides an a la carte way of shopping for your needed features. Instead of Stellar billing you for a one suite, the software has been priced based of the features. You could purchase a technician when looking into repairing a corrupt .MDF or Platinum to get the ability to repair backups or go for the Toolkit to have full access to all the above-mentioned features as well as reset SQL Server administrator and user passwords.

Some features you will notice with the SQL Repair software:

  • New and enhanced GUI.
  • Multiple DPI Supported (100%, 125%, 150%, 175%).
  • Saves the Scan Information.
  • Option to save repaired database to SQL Server Authentication.
  • Support for MS SQL Server 2019, MS SQL Server 2017, MS SQL Server 2016, MS SQL Server 2014, MS SQL Server 2012 R2, 2012, MS SQL Server 2008 R2, 2008, 2008 (64 bit), 2008 Express, MS SQL Server 2005, 2005 (64 bit), 2005 Express, MS SQL Server 2000, 2000 (64 bit), 7.0 and mixed formats.

The installation piece of the software is very easy and user friendly. The below steps would help you to successfully install the software.

  • Run the downloaded Stellar Repair for MSSQL.exe to open the setup dialog box.
  • Click next and accept the License Agreement to continue.
  • Browse and specify the location and folder for the binary installation file and click next to continue.
  • Select checkbox per installation requirements for the additional task screen.
  • Review your installation configurations and select back to modify any settings. Click start to install if ready.
  • Click Finish after a successful completion of the install.

 Launch the Stellar Repair for MS SQL from your start menu under programs or double click the desktop icon.

Quick Overview of Stellar Repair for MS SQL:

SQL Database Repair Software can help you fix the corruption and restore the data back in some cases even when the data is deleted. The easy to navigate GUI takes all the existing stress of dealing with a corrupt database.


The included deleted records functionality can assist in restoring deleted records in the MS SQL database (MDF) repaired file. By check-boxing the above highlighted [Include Deleted Records], the repair process will try to recover any deleted records (if found).


A left pane object explorer shows a tree map of all the database objects in the repaired database. You also have the functionality of being selective in your export/save of objects by check boxing the needed table(s). You can also directly view records in the tables to verify the consistency and data quality.

 


Below at the footer of the application is the Log report which provides a verbose log of the transactions that occur during the repair process. This is essential for troubleshooting and understanding the different processes that occurred during the repair.

REVIEW:  

Stellar Repair for MS SQL provides that enterprise-level SQL Server database repair solution that saves tremendous hours of administrative work of recovering a corrupt database. The entire suite called the Toolkit opens up all the amazing features of SQL Server password reset and SQL database backup recovery. The super-fast recovery algorithm can retrieve data from a corrupted database or backup file and create a new database or export data into other formats. The SQL user password reset tool allows the average user to change passwords without in-depth technical knowledge. I was not expecting such additional out-of-box functionalities such as multiple backup supports (full, differential, or transaction log). This is an all-in-one solution tool that I would recommend to anyone (technical and non-technical) that works with SQL Server databases.