Data Loader Approach to Safe and Easy Salesforce Data Backup and Recovery

Salesforce Data Backup

In this series of data backup and recovery tips and tricks, here we will discuss some important steps to follow efficient data recovery on Salesforce. In the pre1vious articles, we discussed Salesforce Weekly Export, APIs, and Full Sandbox data management, etc. Salesforce has its data recovery service as a last resort in case of data loss as a backup option, but it is ideal for Salesforce users to have other better third-party backup and recovery support.

If you are a Salesforce administrator, this is one of the most crucial decisions you make as to how you backup and restore critical organizational data. One should also consider your action plan if Salesforce data is not available anymore. Here, in this article, we will try to look into the Salesforce native option of Data Loader as to how it works in backing up Salesforce data and all tools to be used. 

What is Data Loader?

Data Loader is a native and mighty tool used to export, import, and delete huge data volumes within Salesforce Org. While doing data import using Data Loader can easily read, load, and extract data using CSV files or the Bulk APIs. In the case of data export, it can give output as.CSV files, which is similar to Weekly Export. You may also keep in mind that when the Weekly Export option processes all the files into multiple ZIP files, Data Loader can only process a single .CSV at a time.

The major benefit of Data Loader is that it comes free with the Classic and Lightning versions of Salesforce. You can simply install Data Loader in both Mac and Windows environments with easy installation through the user interface. You can also do the same using the Windows CLI by specifying the data files. As a Salesforce native, Data Loader can easily get integrated with the platform and accessed by multiple members at a time as admins and developers.

Another big advantage of Data Loader is that it can manage sheer data volumes. This tool will let the users load up to 5 million records in a single attempt. On the other hand, the Data Import Wizard of Salesforce will let you load only 50,000 records at a time. This will save a lot of time during import. Data Loader will also enable the users to save field mappings in a better way than choosing field mapping each time.

For all these reasons we discussed above, Data Loader is now highly gaining in popularity as a functional Salesforce tool for data management. For those who often import big data volumes to Salesforce, Data Loader can effectively leverage data backup features. However, while using Data Loader, you need to be very cautious about it being used as a single data backup and recovery service. Data Loader backup process is similar to that of the Weekly Export, which may involve downloading the CSV files manually or export scheduling, which is time-consuming and complicated. However, unlike Weekly Export, you can also use Data Loader for Salesforce data backup recovery.

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Uses of Salesforce Data Loader

  • Creating CSV Files for data backup

In order to back up the Salesforce data, you can create .CSV files for data. This has to be done manually, so you may plan for it at least once weekly or as needed. While doing the backup, you need to consider how it will affect your organization’s data recovery time and goals. This is crucial as you have a chance to lose the data which is generated between two consecutive backups in case of a data failure and need for restoration in between.

If you try to run Data Loader from CLI, then there is a smart workaround as you can allow the data loader export to run automatically based on the scheduled export. You may use the Task Scheduler feature of Windows to do this. We discussed how to do this in another article in this series, which you can refer to for a better understanding.

  • Isolating missing data

If you suspect or identify a data loss, then the first step is to understand the size and depth of the damage by further isolating the missing data. This is called ‘sizing the damage,’ which involves getting two distinct sets of data at two different dates. You can take one before the data loss date and another set after that specific date. You can extract both these data sets by using .CSV files, as we discussed above.

  • Creating .CSV restore files

Once you identify and isolate the size of mixing data, you can further create the records needing restoration. For this, you may create a separate file for each of the lost objects on Salesforce. These objects will include the parent accounts, child contacts, child opportunities, and the orphan custom object lookups. You can connect with the parent records list and review child as well as orphan files for possible deletions. Once done, next, it is just a matter of copy and pasting the records to the new files and save as CSV.

  • External ID
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The existing ID value will be lost if someone deletes Salesforce records. Upon restoration, Salesforce will assign fresh IDs. However, this may cause some problems as you have to maintain relationships based on the old IDs. So, during the recovery phase, the ideal approach is to use the old ID values themselves as external IDs to map the related records. This has to be done manually, and while performing the data import, the external ID will act as a thread between the associated existing objects to connect properly.

  • Restoring files in the correct order

While doing CSV import to Salesforce, the processing order is an important consideration to make. You may first establish the parent object records and then generate the new external ID values. Further, add child object records for rebuilding correct relationships for each parent record and also keep in mind that while restoring the child objects, it should be an UPSERT and not an INSERT.

Data backup and restoration using Data Loader have many steps to accomplish. Once you learn it well and administer the process, you can make use of this mighty tool to the fullest potential ineffective Salesforce data management.

Salesforce declared the finish of its Data Recovery Service. Be that as it may, in March 2021, the organization switched its choice and once again introduced the usefulness. What was the reasoning behind this? What is Salesforce Data Recovery Service? What has changed and what’s the significance here for you? We’ll observe the responses to these inquiries and more in this blog.

Salesforce keeps a reinforcement duplicate of your information to help their catastrophe recuperation plan (i.e., if there should arise an occurrence of disappointment on their part). This information is made accessible to you as a feature of the Salesforce Data Recovery administration, despite the fact that Salesforce expressly cautions against depending on the help in case of information misfortune.

Salesforce likewise gives a couple of local strategies to back up and reestablish your information at no extra expense. These choices include:

Information Export Service: With this assistance, you can perform manual or booked products of your information on a week after week or month to month premise utilizing the Salesforce UI. 


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