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I have a server running SQL Server 2005. I have nightly full backups, with transaction log backups every 15 minutes. This is a relatively small server so I am not doing any differential backups.

If one of the nightly full backups fails, is the database recoverable using the previous night's backup and all of the transaction logs for both days, or would there be a problem with the missing full backup?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

Full backups, successful or failed, do not truncate the log. Only log backups do. So a failed full backup has no impact on the log backup chain, is like no operation was done at all. If that would not be true, you could not possibly create a safe maintenance plan: any failed full backup would put your database at danger if it would interrupt the log backup chain.

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Great answer- support.microsoft.com/kb/873235 gives some additional detail, especially under the para heading "Truncate the inactive transactions in your transaction log" –  Clint Miller Sep 2 '10 at 18:29
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