Creating a SQL Server Clone Environment

You can duplicate the source database by cloning the snapshots that were created during the backup.

The cloning feature uses the storage array hardware capability. For information about which arrays are supported, see Application Clone.

You can use the cloning feature to:

  • Duplicate large databases in a short amount of time

  • Create test environments

  • Retrieve data quickly without intensive resource use on the production environment

  • Alleviate the load on production servers

A clone can be created from an IntelliSnap full backup. During the clone creation, a reservation period can be specified by the user. At the end of the reservation period, the system automatically shut downs the clone database and frees up all resources. The cloning operation can also be scheduled to run periodically to allow the clones to get refreshed from the latest backups on a regular basis.

Cloning is supported from snapshot primary, SnapVault, and SnapMirror copies.

The databases can be cloned to the same instance or to a different instance. Follow the steps given below to create a clone environment from existing snapshots.


  1. From the CommCell Browser, expand Client Computers > client > SQL.

  2. Right-click the instance, point to All Tasks and then click Instant Clone.

  3. On the Clone Options dialog box, select Latest Backup, and then click View Content.

  4. In the CommCell Browser window, select the entire database to clone, and click Instant Clone.

    The SQL Instant Clone Options dialog box appears.

  5. On the General tab, specify the destination details.

    1. From the Destination Server list, select the clone destination server.

      The destination server must have storage array that contains the source database volumes.

    2. In the Snap Mount Point box, enter the path where the software mounts the snapshot. You can use Browse to select the path.

      The database on the mounted path is attached to the SQL server.

    3. To have the software clean up any existing clone on the destination, regardless of the reservation period, select the Unconditionally overwrite existing database or files check box.

  6. On the Instant clone options tab, specify the time to retain the test environment in the Reservation Period box.


    When this time expires, the software dismounts the database and deletes the mount point.

  7. On the Job Initiation tab, have the software automatically refresh the clone with the latest backup:

    1. Select Schedule.

    2. Click Configure Schedule Pattern.

      For information on how to configure a restore schedule, see Schedule Restores.

  8. Optional: Use the following steps if you are using an array that does not have cloning capability:

    1. Click Advanced.

      The Advanced Restore Options dialog box appears.

    2. On the Data Path tab, from the Use Proxy list, select a proxy server that will act as iSCSI server for the clone operation.

      For more information on iSCSI server, see Using Commvault iSCSI Server for Instant Clones .

    3. Click OK.

  9. Click OK to close the SQL Instant Clone Options dialog box