NAV 2013 R2 | Companies and Backups

I should have had this one seen coming but forgot all about it. During the development of NAV 2013 R2 the “native” backup feature was removed.

There has been much to do about this the last few days. Some even suggested it was removed because of Multi Tenancy. This is not the case. It was removed from the classic environment into the managed environment.

Unfortunately though it has been implemented in a different way. It is no longer designed primarily as a backup feature, but as a company management feature.

The way to do backups is SQL Server, not NAV. Therefore the new feature does no longer use files to move data around.

Part of what people used backups for was reproducing companies. One could easily create a backup of a company, rename the old company and restore the backup creating a copy of the company for testing purposes.

Another reason why end-users need to create companies is consolidation. This has been implemented kinda awkward in NAV hence it needs a consolidation company.

A scenario that no longer works is taking one company out of a database, take it to another database and then restore it.

Multi-Tenacy does have a feature that is kind of like that, this is where the confusion starts.

Creating and managing companies in NAV 2013 R2

Via Departments -> Administration -> IT Administration -> General you can access the Company menu. Here you can create, rename and delete companies. Just like you could in the classic client.

Company 1

This is also where you can find the new feature Copy that allows you to copy one company to another.


If you investigate the code you’ll see that Microsoft has added a new C/AL command to copy companies. COPYCOMPANY

Company 2

Move data from one database to another database

So the only scenario that we no longer have is moving data around. Fortunately I can help you there with a piece of C/AL Code that generates a SQL script for that.

bear with me here, I never intended to share this, I created this because I was upgrading from one CTP build to another and I could not open my database anymore.

Here is the code :

Company 3

I will see if I can clean this up and put it on Mibuso as download.

The general idea is to create a new database with a company that has the same objects and then generate and run this script. It is very close to making a FBK file and take it with you.

Issues with restoring companies the old way

Everyone that really worked with this feature knows that once you start having more than 40 companies you will have issues with this feature anyway. I had a customer once with 2.500 companies in one database and they could not use this feature anymore.

Moving forward

In general we are moving forward. This change has nothing to do with Multi Tenancy, it’s just a feature moved from classic to managed.

Now, I am not saying the implementation of Multi Tenancy speeded the requirement for this change up. No, I am not saying that.


  1. jijuoommen says:

    Reblogged this on jijuoommen and commented:
    MS Dynamics provide an easier way to copy backup..
    However, it should be done in same database..
    Good article


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