With on premise environment, we have the luxury of taking a backup of CRM instance database. We always used to miss this option in CRM online, especially when we wanted to deploy any major change and want to keep backup (Customization and data) of CRM instance so that we can go back to previous state incase things go wrong.

Dynamics CRM 2016 update 1 provides a feature which enables CRM online tenants to take backup of CRM instances online.

backup and restore dynamics crm online


Types of Backup

Backup and restore feature in CRM online provides two types of backups.

System Backup

  • System backups are automatic and taken by CRM online on daily basis.
  • System backups happens for all CRM online instances.
  • System backups are retained for three days.
  • Exactly what time of the day system backups occurs may vary.
  • This type of backup is not counted against your storage limits.

On-Demand Backup (User Backup)

  • On-demand backup allows CRM online tenants to make their own backups, before making any significant customization changes or before applying any online update.
  • Only CRM online 2016 Update 1 or later version are supported for backup.
  • You can backup sandbox or production instances.
  • These types of backup are retained for 3 days.
  • These types of backups are counted against your storage limit.

Steps for Database Backup

Please follow these steps for taking on demand backup:

  • You need to be office 365 administrator for taking backup and restoring CRM online backup.
  • Open Dynamics 365 Administrator Center.
  • Click Backup & Restore.
  • Select instance from dropdown for backup.


  • Click New Backup button.


  • Enter required information on next screen (Label, Notes etc.)
  • Click Create button.


  • New backup will start showing up under backup list.


Restore Backup

Backups can only be restored on Sandbox instance. For production instance, restore button will be disabled. If you want to restore production instance, convert production instance to Sandbox instance and then perform the restore.

 Delete Backup

Both types of backups get automatically deleted after 3 days. You can check expiration date for each backup. For on-demand backups, you have the option to delete them manually prior to expiration date.



  • Backup and restore option is only available for CRM online 2016 Update 1 and I assume for later versions. 🙂
  • Currently, there is no API support for backup and restore feature.
  • On-demand backups cannot be scheduled. As mentioned earlier, system backups are taken automatically and you will not have any control over it.