Steering Away from Disaster
On my very first SharePoint job back in 2001, I spent hours backing up, copying, and restoring the SharePoint installation from an internal domain to the one accessible to users from the Internet. This was not a backup strategy; it was a crude way to get content to the Internet while keeping the intranet secure. But it made the system very vulnerable to failure. Every time content was updated, I had to manually overwrite the production SPS 2001 with the updated staging SPS 2001 out of hours so users could see the changes the next day. This started to become a nightly occurrence. I still remember the feeling of fear every time I had to run the commands to overwrite the production farm and bring it up to date. I would stare at that cursor while it made up its mind (far too casually, I thought) to bring everything in line. I would sigh with relief when it worked and I was able to see the changes there. I still feel the sense of mild panic when it didn’t work and I had to troubleshoot what went wrong. It was usually an easy fix—some step I missed—but sometimes it was a change to the network or the Exchange server where the data was stored or a Windows security issue.