Tip #985: Use Azure for permanent instance backups

In the tip 759 we suggested keeping a sandbox instance as your persistent backup because Dynamics 365 Management Center provides no control over the backup lifetime. Later, we were excited about introduction of the Online Management API and, as it turned out, all for the right reasons.

Using the API, administrators can now backup a Dynamics 365 instance into Azure blob storage using Backup Instance request. The expected request data are json, you will need an Azure account and typical request would look like:

POST /api/v1/InstanceBackups HTTP/1.1
Host: admin.services.crm.dynamics.com
Authorization: Bearer token-here
Content-Type: application/json
Cache-Control: no-cache
 "Label" : "Blob it is!",
 "IsAzureBackup" : true,
 "AzureStorageInformation" : {
   "ContainerName": "foo",
   "StorageAccountName": "bar",
   "StorageAccountKey": "baz"

After backup completes, it is properly recognized by the admin center:

Azure backup

Blob storage in Azure also gives us an insight how backups are organized:

Backup blob

As you can see, full backup of an [almost] empty instance takes just over 850Mb, followed by transaction log backups every 15 minutes. And no, I wouldn’t waste time trying to restore that on premises.

2 thoughts on “Tip #985: Use Azure for permanent instance backups

  1. Rich says:

    Hi George

    Great post thanks.

    I have tried with with a D365 trial to a paid Azure account. However the backup created is created within the D365 Admin Center (Status = Available).

    Do you know if this is a D365 trial limitation?


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