Interacting with Deleted SharePoint Artefacts using PowerShell

Background Information:

Since the introduction of Service Pack 1 for SharePoint 2010, Microsoft has made it possible for users to retrieve a deleted SharePoint Web or a Site Collection from the recycle bin. If a user goes and deletes a Web or a Site Collection from the SharePoint Interface, the web will be sent to the recycle bin for a period of 30 days, after which it will be disposed of automatically.  With this first Service Pack, Microsoft introduced a new Object to the SharePoint model called SPDeletedWeb or SPWebDeletedSite. This new object represents a deleted Web, and has a limited set of methods and properties available for it. As part of this Service Pack were also a few new PowerShell cmdlets that allow us to interact with these “half-alive” artefacts, allowing us to restore them to their former glory, or to send them out into the abyss forever.

20140425-2.png

The following list of PowerShell cmdlets were introduced as part of Service Pack 1 for SharePoint 2010:

  • Remove-SPDeletedWeb
  • Remove-SPDeletedSite
  • Get-SPDeletedWeb
  • Get-SPDeletedSite
  • Restore-SPDeletedWeb
  • Restore-SPDeletedSite

Now, something very important to take a good note of: You can only ever restore a Web or a Site Collection that was deleted through the web interface. If you used PowerShell (Remove-SPWeb or Remove-SPSite) to delete them, they are G-O-N-E, and there is no way for you to restore them but to use your backups.

Getting a Reference to a Deleted Web or Site Collection:

Using the Get-SPDeletedWeb or the Get-SPDeletedSite Powershell cmdlets, you can get a reference to a deleted web or site collection in your environment. Remember, this only works if you have SharePoint 2010 Service Pack 1 or higher (any flavour of SharePoint 2013 works). The way you’d normally go about restoring a deleted artefact is by specifying its URL. For example, if in my environment I have all my “secondary” Site Collections created under the “/sites/[…]” managed path, then I could retrieve a list of all my deleted Site Collections by calling the following PowerShell command:

Get-SPDeletedSite “/sites/*”

This command will return a collection of SPDeletedSite objects.

20140425.png

Restoring a Deleted Web or Site Collection:

Assuming you have a web or a site collection that has been deleted through the web interface, meaning that is it now a SPDeletedWeb or a SPDeletedSite object. To restore it using PowerShell you need to use the Restore-SPDeletedSite or the Restore-SPDeletedWeb cmdlet and pass it the URL of the object to restore, or a reference to it obtained by the Get-SPDeletedSite or Get-SPDeletedWeb cmdlet. The following Powershell command will restore the HR Site Collection

Restore-SPDeletedSite /sites/HR

20140425-3.png

Removing a Deleted Web or Site Collection:

Removing a deleted Site Collection or Web from the Recycle bin will delete it permanently from the SharePoint environment. This can be achieved by using the Remove-SPDeletedSite or the Remove-SPDeletedWeb PowerShell cmdlets. Just like for the restore operation, you can either pass it the URL of the deleted artefact or a reference to it. The following example will permanently delete the HR site collecton, which had been deleted through the Central Administration web interface.

Remove-SPDeletedSite /sites/hr

20140425-4.png

Microsoft Premier Field Engineer - SharePoint

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*
*