Deep Dive into the SharePoint Content Deployment and Migration API – Part 5

[Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - Part 6 - Part 7]

Avoiding common problem

This can be one of the most frequently updated chapters of this article series as "common problems" can change over time. In addition I can only talk about common problems I have seen so far. But let get started.

Problem 1: Mixing deployments with and without retaining object identity

First of all: if possible you should avoid this! Importing with different settings for this property into the same database can lead to serious problems during future deployment and such databases will become hard to maintain.

Be aware that this also means that you should not use STSADM -o import against a database that should be used as the destination of a content deployment job!

STSADM -o import will not retain the object identity while content deployment does.

So why is there a problem when mixing imports with different RetainObjectIdentity settings?

The reason is that with RetainObjectIdentity enabled the imported object will have to be created with the same name and the same guid at the same location in the destination database as it was in the source database. If the item already exists it will be updated. If not it will be created.

Problems occur if there is an item with the same name but a different Guid in the destination database. This can happen if someone has authored on the destination server and created items with the same name but or if he imported content from the source server WITHOUT RetainObjectIdentity setting set to true.

In case that items with the same name but different GUID are allowed for the affected item you will end up with two items with the same name on the destination server. This will be the case (e.g.) for usual ListItems.

In case that items with the same name but different GUID are not allowed for the affected item the import will run into an exception similar to the one below and stop:

Failed to create the 'Pages' library. OriginalException: There can only be one instance of this list type in a web.

=> In order to avoid this problem you have to guarantee that content added to the destination database will not have any name/guid conflicts with the source database - even if new content is added to the source database in the future!

Problem 2: Running multiple imports without retaining object identity for updates of the same content

When doing an export and import without retaining the object identity on the destination server you can end up with duplicate items in lists as each import tries to create the same list item again with a different GUID. The import is not able to decide whether you would like to overwrite an existing item with the same name or if you would like to have multiple list items with the same name. Without retaining the object identity you will end up with multiple list items with potentially the same content. To force overwrite of list items you have to retain the object identity.

That means you cannot use STSADM -o export/import as a replacement for content deployment! If you need to do deploy content to a remote destination server without connectivity you need to write a custom tool that has retain object identity enabled rather than using STSADM -o import based on the code samples provided in Part 3 of this article series.

=> STSADM -o export and import should only be used if the content being imported does not already exist in the destination database and if the database will not be used as the destination database for content deployment (see Problem 1 above).

Problem 3: delete an item from the source site that belonged to the site definition and recreate it

This is a different flavor of the problem discussed as Problem 1

During provisioning of a site items defined in the site definition template are added to the site. Problems can occur when changes are made to the provisioned items. Especially if the provisioned items are deleted and replaced with items with the same name. That approach will work well on a single server installation. But it will cause problems when using content deployment.

The reason is that during content deployment the site will be provisioned on the destination server using the site definition template. And this will also cause all items defined in this template to be created. When content deployment now tries to import the updated or replaced items there will be a conflict. You will end up with an exception similar to the one in Problem 1.

=> You should never modify or delete one of the items created through the site definition in your site. If the site definition does not suite your needs you should create a custom site definition that fits to your needs and use this instead to avoid the need to customize some of the provisioned items.

Problem 4: deploy from destination back to source

This is something that theoretically can be done but only if the source hasn't changed since it was last deployed to the destination. Otherwise the same issues as in Problem 1 can occur.

Also be aware that it will not be an incremental deployment - means you cannot just deploy the changes since you deployed from source to destination. The reason is that the timestamp information about what to deploy is stored with the deployment job. As this information only exists on the source system the first deployment from destination back to source will deploy everything! So the result would be the same as deploying into an empty site collection on the soruce system. And actually deploying into an empty site collection would be better to avoid problems in case that changes have been done on the source system.

Problem 5: deploy partial content without exporting the parent items

When deploying with retaining the object identity (as you can do with content deployment in the central admin) it is not possible to reparent items. Deployment with retaining the object identity requires that the identity of the object is the same on the destination server and the identity is defined by Id, Name and by the Url.

So the parent of each deployed object has to exist on the destination server in order to successfully import the package on the destination server. We have seen that customers are trying to export a specific subtree of the site without exporting the parents. E.g. only a specific variation label without the variation root.

If the parent of the exported objects does not exist on the importing site then the item cannot be imported and the deployment will fail.

=> Ensure that all parents of all content being exported exists on the destination server.
=> Or create a custom export tool that does not retain object identity and changes the parent during import as discussed in Part 3 but be aware about the limitations discussed as Problem 2.

Problem 6: deploy partial content with references outside the selected scope

This is similar to Problem 5 except that we assume that the parent objects of the selected object exists in the destination database. In this situation you might assume that no problems should occur. That is not correct. When exporting items in a subtree per default all referenced objects (like images or documents) will be exported as well. Even if these objects are outside the selected scope. In this situation the export package will contain objects which might not have a parent in the destination database. 

If the parent of this image or document does not exist on the importing site then the item cannot be imported and the deployment will fail.

=> Ensure that authors do not use resources from other parts of the site collection which is not being exported.
=> Or create a custom export tool that uses the ExcludeDependencies to exclude objects outside the selected export scope. See Part 2 for more details.


Comments (71)

  1. Johan says:


    I am trying to export a subweb from a subweb(site/subweb1/subweb2).

    I cant make it work the way I want. I have tried 2 ways.

    1. Export all subwebs and set SPIncludeDescendants.None on all webs, except subweb2. Result: the whole site is exported, with all content (even on subweb1)

    2. Only export subweb2. Result: The subweb goes directly in the site when I import the exported file (site/subweb2).

    Does anybody have an idea on how to solv this?

  2. Hi Johan,

    with SPIncludeDescendants.None for subweb1 lists of subweb1 should not be exported.

    Please double check.



  3. NickG says:


    Another great addition to the deployment series. I will alert those inside the MSFT SP PRIME team about this new "common problems" section with a suggestion that they contribute content.

    Thanks again for your sharing this great info.

    NickG (MSFT)

  4. Chris O'Brien says:


    Extremely useful post (and series).

    Maurice Prather’s <a href="">Beware of import/export</a> post also makes for interesting reading. It seems some of the problems Maurice mentions are different to those you’ve detailed here – are the issues in Maurice’s post still known issues? Any other comments on the post?



  5. Hi Chris,

    there are lots of things to take into consideration when using the deployment and migration API. Several things will be addressed in hotfixes and the upcoming service pack.

    I don’t know all the issues in Maurice list – not all have passed my desk as service requests.

    I can only say: if you run into an issue, open a support call to get it addressed if possible.



  6. tony says:

    Hi Stefan,

    This additional section helps me to understand MOSS Content Deployment. Thanks.

    Btw, another content deployment problem causes me a lot of trouble.

    I moved all images from a folder to a new create folder. After that, I deleted the old folder. It works fine on staging, but the content deployment job fails. It said the parent folder cannot be found on destination server.

    Can you help to tell me why ?

    Thanks so much

  7. Hi Tony,

    this sounds like a potential problem in MOSS. Please open a support case to get this analyzed as this should not happen.



  8. Per Hoyer says:

    Hi Stefan.

    the problems about deploying from destination and back to source using normal content deployment is pretty dificult to find any info on – so your addin are greatly appreciated.

    We have a scenario where the majority of info will be edited from the inside – and deployed to the outside, wich all works fine – allthough the part about rolling out solutions sure has some strange problems growing along with it.

    BUT anyway  – our outside users will be writing to specific lists and it would indeed be nice if i cold deploy them back in to the inside once in a while.

    Now my q is – would you consider this setup sane?


    Per Hoyer


  9. Hi Per,

    in this scenario I would write a custom application that explicitly exports the lists that need to be deployed back. It needs to be Then import this into your source server.

    You should not use content deployment for this as it does not have the required granularity to only export/import specific lists.

    This also allows to implement some error handling to avoid problems caused by name/guid conflicts.



  10. greggu says:

    HI Stefan,

    I have a question about the migration.

    I want to migrate a listitem such as portal page from one site to another site, and I also want to keep the listitem’s parent. e.g. suppose we have a item called "myDocFolder/test.aspx", I want to migrate this item to another site, and keep the item’s parent, e.g "myDocFolder", which doesn’t exist on the destination site, when I do this, I got the following error:

    The list item /sites/team/myDocFolder/test.aspx.aspx cannot be imported because its parent web  does not exist.

    If I create the docuemnt folder "myDocFolder", on the destination server, the migartion works properly. So How can I keep the parent folder , which doesn’t exist on destination server? do SharePoint support this?



  11. Hi Greg,

    you need to export the parent folder as well.

    Just add this folder to the list of objects to export and mark it to not include descendents to ensure that not all list items are exported.



  12. Shamus says:

    Hi Stefan, thanks for this great series it has been most helpful.

    So here’s the $20 question: How can items be moved from one site to a different location in another site?

    I need to move some content and simultaneuosly restructure the site so that the destination site has the same content, but a different structure. I certainly want to avoid the issues you’ve ooutlined, so it seems that the export/import that allows reparenting is not an option.

    I’ve experimented with code to move all items (and version histories) individually from the source to the destination. The basic idea is to grab each item in the source, check if it exists on the destination (delete the destination version if it exists), then add each version with properties to the destination.

    Is this a sound approach? It seems like I’m just manually doing what the reparent options would be doing, except for the fact I’m doing a check/delete before adding the file to the destination. Should my check/delete protect me from having multiple items with the same name and different GUIDs?

  13. Hi Shamus,

    actually it sounds more like a copy operation than a move as you are not talking about removing the item on the source location.

    In such a situation you might end up with duplicate content when repeating the action and doing reparetenting.

    As you need to restructure the site you cannot retain the object identity – so you have to reparent.

    So your approach of checking if an item with the same name already exists and deletion looks like the best way to avoid the duplication.



  14. Oddbjørn says:

    Thanks for many good tips with Content Deployment.

    We are setting up a content deployment work on a large site (12GB) and the largest subsites is too large to use Content Deployment for the initial run, causing memory exception when decompression the files. Tried to avoid it by using stsadm -o export/import, but got same problem as you mention here.

    How can we do an initial export with retaining the object identity? Is there no way doing this without coding the deployment ourself?



  15. Hi Oddborn,

    you should open a support case for this.



  16. Sergey says:

    Hi, Stefan.

    In my sharepoint solution there are master page, layouts, content types and fields. Some fields are lookup fields. I create them in the feature activation event handler after creating their lists. Generally, the process works on deployment to blank site collection, but it creates my layouts/master pages in content DB, meaning with status "customized". To avoid this, i activate my feature on destination site before deployment, which creates lists and lookup fields in destination site collection. After this the deployment fails with error "The specified name is already in use".

    What is the best solution for my scenario?


  17. babeach says:

    DO you know if it is possible to import a site that uses Team site in MOSS 2007 into a Team site on WSS 3.0?

    We had a test MOSS 2007 setup and our budget does not allow us to use this server. So I was tasked with setting up WSS 3.0 and migrating certain sites from test MOSS into the WSS 3.0 architecture.

    I ran export from stsadm.exe command line and it creates 9 files regardless of what file extension I use. Import into WSS 3.0 does not work.

    I also tried backup/restore from STSADM, import/export from SharePoint designer.

    This last venture I tried I got a SharePoint Services Version error.

    Everything I have tried has failed.

    Do you know of any resources I could check to help if it is possible?

  18. Hi Babeach,

    this should work if your site only uses features which are also available on your WSS site. It will fail as soon as you have used any non WSS features.



  19. babeach says:

    Thanks, Stefan.

    I wasn’t the owner of the site so I don’t know the internal webparts used. I was told it was strictly Team Site.

    I’ll keep plugging along & see what I can come up with.

    As a last resort, I was thinking of trying to re-create the site heirarchy in WSS 3.0 and possibly importing/exporting the content only.

    Time cosuming, but may work for my needs.

  20. Hi Sergey,

    you are not allowed to activate your features before as this will create items with identical names but different guids.

    Unfortunatelly the deployment API unghosts items as you mentioned it. There is no good solution for this beside to manually re-ghost the items after deployment.



  21. Anonymous says:

    I&#39;m happy to announce that development/testing of the next version of the SharePoint Content Deployment

  22. William says:


    Unfortunately I did not read your article before I fully exported and imported my site using the stsadm -o export/import command.  I understand now that his may have caused issues retaining object identity.  Now, when I use the content deployment feature to deploy full and incremental updates, I get the following failure message:

    Content deployment job ‘Full Content Deployment’ failed.The exception thrown was ‘System.ArgumentException’ : ‘This constraint cannot be enabled as not all values have corresponding parent values.’

    If I delete the site collection from the destination server and run a full content deployment, will I still experience issues with conflicting parent values?


  23. Hi Bill,

    you cannot use this database as destination as this will cause lots of problems. This specific one sounds like one of the problems you can experience. But you will understand that only testing will show if the problem is gone as I don’t know your database content.



  24. bala says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Are there any releases exlusively in the content deployment API area recently?



  25. Hi Bala,

    the answer is yes. The latest WSS and MOSS hotfixes contain some Post-SP1 content deployment fixes. You can request the latest hotfixes through Microsoft Support Services.



  26. Anonymous says:

    Moving a page interactively is easy using Copy, but in code… …you have to figure out and match the

  27. Anonymous says:

    So my tool, the SharePoint Content Deployment Wizard has been available for some time now and I&#39;ve

  28. markus says:

    Hi Stefan,

    we would like to move a sitecollection without the content but we always the entire site with all content. Is this a known behaviour?

    Does the API (SPDeploymentObjectType.Site) support moving the root web of a sitecollection without any Descendants?



  29. Hi Markus,

    you would need to use SPDeploymentObjectType.Web for this.



  30. markus says:

    Hi Stefan,

    thanks for the hint. We followed your suggestion.

    Our First try was to add the site object as export object to the export object collection but with the type SPDeploymentObjectType.Web instead of the type SPDeploymentObjectType.Site. That caused the following error during export: “The object with Id xxxxxx that was configured as part of the Export Settings no longer exists.”

    So our next try was to add the root web object to the export object collection instead of the site object. This brought the result we were looking for: moving the root web and its lists/libraries without items but we have seen an issue with a library called “Forms”.

    Steps we did:

    – Create an "empty" destination sitecollection with stsadm

    – Export the root web using Objecttype Web (Exclude dependecies=True, Retain GUIDs, IncludeDescendants=None)

    – Import the cmp of the root web (successfull)

    – Export all list and libraries without descendants

    – Import the cmp with all lists/libraries (not successfull). Result was an Error Message: "The specified name is already in use.”

    We figured out that after the first import the Forms Library was created at the destination site collection. We assume that this is related to the MS Enterprise Feature which has been activated during the first import (as expected because the source site collection has it activated too). The  second import contains the Forms Template library of the source site collection which has a different GUID than the one created at the destination site collection. We guess that causes the error.

    Are we right with our assumption? If yes what would be the best way to address this?

    Some other questions related to this:

    – Which content related directly to the site collection won’t be replicated when using the root web object instead of the site object as export object? And if there is a difference, is there a way to replicate this delta without descendants of the site collection by using the PRIME API?

    – We have an issue when adding several lists/libraries with different IncludeDescendants settings to the export object collection. By only adding one list with IncludeDescendants=All the PRIME API also deployed the items of added lists with IncludeDescendants=None. When we only add lists with IncludeDescendants=None it works and no list items are deployed. Is this a known behaviour? Is there a way to get mixed collections work?



  31. Hi Markus,

    I haven’t tried everything in your list but for the problem I would try to export the rootweb together with the forms library and all it’s content on the initial deployment. This should avoid the conflicts.



  32. markus says:

    Hi Stefan,

    this is what we tried last night and yes this seems to avoid the issue.

    Another potential solution would be that we delete all lists and libraries on the target site after the first import of the root web without descendands.

    But we assume that there was a reason for MS to have two different object types (site vs.web)

    Which content related directly to the site collection won’t be replicated when using the root web object instead of the site object as export object? And if there is a difference, is there a way to replicate this delta without descendants of the site collection by using the PRIME API?

    Are there any plans from MS to adjust the API that you could use the site object without descendants?



  33. Hi Markus,

    if you have a look in the manifest file of the export you will see that there are no specific things exported with the SPSite object.

    This object is a container for all the included hierarchically organized SPWeb objects inside the site collection.

    There are currently no plans to adjust the API.



  34. Daniel says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Markus wrote: "By only adding one list with IncludeDescendants=All the PRIME API also deployed the items of added lists with IncludeDescendants=None."

    At the moment we handle this by doing one export/import with lists where we don’t want to have the descendants included and one export with lists where we want to have the descendants included.

    Are there any plans from MS to adjust the API so that you could mix up lists with different IncludeDescendants settings in one export/import?



  35. Hi Daniel,

    if it is indeed as Markus wrote, then it sounds like a potential problem in the API. You should open a support case to get this analyzed. Without a support case it will not be investigated and/or fixed.



  36. Anonymous says:

    There is more info on Content Deployment issues in earlier blog entries here. But the best information

  37. Hamzeh Ayesh says:


    I have successfuly backed up and restored a SharePoint web site from one server to another, but when  try to access the new site it gives me: Error – File Not Found.  After doing invistigation to find the cause, i found out that it is the custom master page i am using in the site so if i change the sote master page to any existing one, the site will work.  What could be the reason behind this??? i have made sure that the custom master page exists in the new site with the same size as the original one, also iam using the publishing feature…. Any clue regarding this issue????

  38. Hi Hamzeh,

    backup/restore is not supported between different farms as it will not adjust the absolute URLs inside the database.

    You have to use export/import.



  39. Defledermaus says:


    Interesting series of articles.  I only wish the MSDN was as documented on "real world scenarios" to help the rest of us.

    Have you read the post over on about moving documents with version history (

    It seems that there may be several approaches to migrating content depending on whether you have MOSS or just WSS…it was an interesting read.

    – Def

  40. Hi Def,

    I had a look at the article it is a nice approach to do things manually – and maybe have more control if required (e.g. if specific versions should be skipped or not).



  41. Hamzeh Ayesh says:

    HI Stefan,

    Regarding my point of using backup/restore to deply a site from one server to another, i have followed when you told me to use export/import instead.  Export was done successfully, then i created empty template web site and a new site collection then when i try to import, i get this error:

    FatalError: Could not find Feature NewSearchBox.

    at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ImportRequirementsManager.VerifyFeatureDefinition(SPRequirementObject reqObj)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ImportRequirementsManager.Validate(SPRequirementObject reqObj)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ImportRequirementsManager.DeserializeAndValidate()

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPImport.VerifyRequirements()

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPImport.Run()

    Do you have any clue what could be the reason behind this error??

  42. Hamzeh Ayesh says:

    Hi Stefan, plz ignore my last query.


    Hamzeh Ayesh

  43. Hamzeh Ayesh says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Related to my previous post, while running the import operation, i get this error:

    FatalError: User or group 23 cannot be resolved.

    Any idea why this error is happening??


    Hamzeh Ayesh

  44. Hamzeh Ayesh says:

    Hi Stefan:

    In order to bypass the last error i got, i tried to do import without inheriting the security from the orginal site, then import worked fine, but when i try to run the site it’s again giving me the same error i used to have when using the backup/restore option which is: File Not Found.

    So at the end, whether i used backup/restore or export/import, at the end its giving the same error.

    Any advice you can give me hear, i have invested long time just to import/export a sharepoint site from one server to another server but nooooooo hope.

    I don’t know why the process looks that complicated, for sure i am not the first one to do such thing!!  I appreciate your help.


    Hamzeh Ayesh

  45. Hi Hamez,

    in chronological sequence: The custom feature NewSearchBox is not installed on the destination farm. You need to install all features on the destination farm before doing an import. See Part 6 for more details.



  46. Hi Hamez,

    please open a support case. It is not possible to determine the reason with just looking at logs.



  47. Anonymous says:

    Sur le papier, le déploiement de contenu de SharePoint a de quoi séduire. Malheuresement, nombreux sont

  48. David Wu says:

    Hi Stefan,

    I really admire the info you have posted. It is really well written and has plenty of content.

    Can you tell me the process for a development team to properly package a Publishing site, sending it to the client, having them re-create the site , then do a content deployment? From what I gather, there are many options fo going off the rails…. I have already (GUID, versions, duplicate items, path errors, Export settings no longer exist)

    thanks a bunch………… in advance

  49. Elhadi says:

    I have a doubt about what are you saying in "Problem 2" I do a Xth deploy of the same library on the same destination without retain identity and the items with the same name are per default replaced !

    Stefan said : "Without retaining the object identity you will end up with multiple list items…"

    Anyway, thank you for this article…

  50. Hi Elhadi,

    did you try it with a document library or with a list?



  51. Elhadi says:

    That was with a document (images) library

    Have a good week-end !

  52. Hi Elhadi,

    then test it with a custom list and you should see the duplicates.



  53. Steve says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Great series of posts, thanks.

    I was wondering, will content deployment cause problems is external users can register and contribute content to my website?

    Obviously they will be adding content to the publication server and not the authoring (behind the firewall) server.

    So that will cause discrepencies with the authoring server farm right?



  54. Hi Steve,

    yes it can. First of all it is required to ensure that on the authoring server no items with the same URL are created. Otherwise content deployment will fail on import as it runs into conflicts during import.

    In addition you will have different content on source and target which means you will not be able to "recover" the target database by doing a full deployment into a new empty database.



  55. Anonymous says:

    I was working on some Content Deployment stuff and ran into a few problems, but I really wanted to describe

  56. Rovax says:

    When we export pages using the deployment api (SPExport) it leaves out custome field values and it only does this for particular libraries.

    Any ideas why??

  57. Hi Rovax,

    sounds like an issue that has been fixed in our of the latest rollups.

    Which build number does your Microsoft.SharePoint.dll have?



  58. Anonymous says:

    In the past I have released several blogs about the various problems that can occur with Content Deployment.

  59. babu says:

    Hello Stefan,

    We are using the default content deployment feature provided by MOSS to deploy content from one server environment to another.

    The production environment contains 2 sub environments: One for content authoring and another to serve for public users (extended web applicaiton). The content from authoring server is deployment to production daily (midnight) via incremental content deployment.

    We also have a Disaster Recovery environment similar to production environment. Content from authoring is deployed to DR authoring daily which in turn deployed to DR production from DR authoring.

    The problem we are facing is when we delete a sub-site in Authoring; the incremental deployment is not deleting that sub-site in production!

    At the same time when deployed from authoring to DR authoring, the sub-site is deleted successfully in DR authoring. Similarly when deployed from DR authoring to DR production, the sub-site is deleted successfully in DR production.

    This problem occurs only when content is deployment from authoring to production and that too only related to site deletion. At the same time except site deletion, all others modifications such as page / document creation/deletion, etc are properly deployed to production server.

    Any idea why this issue occurs? Your help is greatly appreciated.



  60. Hi Babu,

    I haven’t seen this. Please open a support case with Microsoft Support to get this analyzed.



  61. Jack Tan says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Any idea how do i export/migrate user information list from 1 site collection then import to another site collection? Thanks

  62. Hi Jack,

    usually this list is filled from user profile import. If you have multiple site collections all of them should be synced with AD using this method.

    Does that not fulfill your requirement?



  63. Lili Wei says:

    Hi Stefan,

    We encounter such problem that someone deleted a welcome page on source site, when the incremental content deployment imported the content to target site, error happend as below:


    Microsoft.SharePoint.SPException: The item that you are trying to delete is the current welcome page and cannot be deleted. —> System.Runtime.InteropServices.COMException (0x81020089): The item that you are trying to delete is the current welcome page and cannot be deleted. at Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequestInternalClass.DeleteItem(String bstrUrl, String bstrListName, Int32 lID, UInt32 dwDeleteOp, Guid& pgDeleteTransactionId) at Microsoft.SharePoint.Library.SPRequest.DeleteItem(String bstrUrl, String bstrListName, Int32 lID, UInt32 dwDeleteOp, Guid& pgDeleteTransactionId)


    Would like to ask if we have to delete the destination site and recreate it, then do the full content deployment job again? Thank you very much.


    Lili Wei

  64. Hi Lili,

    it would be sufficient to change the welcome page to a different page in the pages lib. Then the next incremental can delete the previous welcome page.



  65. CMD says:

    Hi Stefan,

    After I change the group owner of a group (A) to a sharepoint group (B) and I then run an export and import the group (A) has not been copied. Note: group B has an id higher then group A. Is that the problem?

    Any thoughts on a resolution?


  66. Hi CMD,

    I haven’t seen this. Are you talking about an export of the whole site collection or only partial content? Is this incremental or full export?



  67. indrashekhar says:

    Hi Stefan,

    I have run into an issue trying to copy a web (SPWeb) from one server farm to another – different structure. I am using the stsadm command export/import to achieve this. The issue is that the source subsite seems to have created more than one sitecolumns with the same name. During import, it complains about the duplicate site columns. Kind of similar to problem 1 above but only that the duplicates are from the source itself!

    Is there a way around this?



  68. Hi Indra,

    you need to rename the columns before exporting so that they are unique in the target site.



  69. Indra says:

    Hi Stefan,

    Thanks for the reply but I really cannot change the name of the source field as the issue is with the internal name of the field.

    I have an open case with microsoft – case no. 110062857708423

    We are getting the following error message in the import log:

    [7/22/2010 5:07:55 PM]: Progress: Importing File Shared Documents/Forms/WebFldr.aspx.

    [7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM]: FatalError: A duplicate name "Practice_x0020_Area" was found.

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.SPFieldCollection.AddFieldToWeb(String strXml, Boolean checkDisplayName)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.SPFieldCollection.AddFieldAsXmlInternal(String schemaXml, Boolean addToDefaultView, SPAddFieldOptions op)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.FieldTemplateSerializer.CreateField(SPWeb web, SerializationInfoHelper infoHelper)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.FieldTemplateSerializer.SetObjectData(Object obj, SerializationInfo info, StreamingContext context, ISurrogateSelector selector)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.XmlFormatter.ParseObject(Type objectType, Boolean isChildObject)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.XmlFormatter.DeserializeObject(Type objectType, Boolean isChildObject, DeploymentObject envelope)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.XmlFormatter.Deserialize(Stream serializationStream)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ObjectSerializer.Deserialize(Stream serializationStream)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.ImportObjectManager.ProcessObject(XmlReader xmlReader)

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPImport.DeserializeObjects()

      at Microsoft.SharePoint.Deployment.SPImport.Run()

    [7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM]: Progress: Import Completed.

    [7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM]: Finish Time: 7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM.

    [7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM]: Completed with 9 warnings.

    [7/22/2010 5:07:57 PM]: Completed with 1 errors.

    Can you please comment this.



  70. Hi Indra,

    it looks as if there is already a field named Practice_x0020_Area in the target site. This can happen (e.g.) if the field was first created in the subsite and later in a parent site if the subsite.

    Such duplicate fields cannot be deployed. You need to resolve the name conflict before exporting the content.



  71. Santhosh says:


    I am trying to copy a publishing page from one site collection to another site collection from a webpart. I am unable to achieve this as it throws the following error.

    Updates are currently disallowed on GET requests. To allow updates on a GET, set the 'AllowUnsafeUpdates' property on SPWeb"

    Although I am trying to set allowunsafeupdates before import.Run statement, it doesnt seem to have any effect. Any pointers please?

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