Best SQL Recovery Tools

Whether it’s a backup failure, ransomware attack, or just a dropped table, SQL recovery can be a stressful and daunting task

In this article, we’ll examine the very best SQL recovery tools sysadmins can use to get their databases back up and running fast.

Here’s our shortlist of the best SQL recovery tools:

  1. Vembu BDR Suite EDITOR’S CHOICE This service offers an application-level backup and recovery service that includes the ability to protect data from SQL Server among other technologies. Installs on Windows Server or Linux and is available as a SaaS platform. Get a 30-day free trial.
  2. Stellar SQL Repair (FREE DOWNLOAD) Uses a tagging system to visibly map out corrupted database objects. Register for a free download.
  3. EaseUS MS SQL Recovery – A comprehensive solution for efficiently recovering lost or corrupted SQL database files with advanced data recovery capabilities and a user-friendly interface.
  4. SysTools SQL Recovery Affordable and easy to use when repairing MDF and NDF files to recover databases or to undelete tables and records.
  5. DataNumen SQL Recovery Can be run on systems as old as Windows 95.
  6. Diskinternals MSSQL Recovery Can recover database files on both Windows and Linux.
  7. Aryson SQL Database Recovery Focuses on streamlining the recovery process.
  8. Kernel SQL Database Recovery Uses a robust previewing feature suited for large database files.
  9. ApexSQL Recover Great for rolling back certain parts of a database and replacing objects in live environments without mounting a new database.

The best SQL recovery tools

Our methodology for selecting an SQL recovery tool

We reviewed the market for relational database backup and recovery systems and analyzed the options based on the following criteria:

  • An efficient strategy for database backup
  • Options for full, incremental, and differential backup
  • Secure password locker
  • Point and click recovery
  • Options for rollback points
  • A free trial or a demo for a risk-free assessment opportunity
  • Value for money, represented by a fair price for a reliable recovery service

Using this set of criteria, we looked for backup and recovery systems for SQL Server and other relational database management systems.

1. Vembu BDR Suite (FREE TRIAL)

Tested on: Windows Server, Linux, and Cloud

vembu dashboard screenshot

Vembu BDR Suite is available in six editions and one of these is BDR Suite for Applications. This plan can implement data backup for specific applications and those include SQL Server. The service will take a dump from the database and copy over the transaction logs as well. The other applications that this edition can protect are MySQL, Exchange Server, Active Directory, and SharePoint. When we tested Vembu BDR Suite we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • Scheduled Backup: Allows users to schedule backups according to their preferred time intervals, ensuring regular data protection.
  • Incremental Backup Plan: Offers incremental backup functionality, enabling efficient use of storage space and faster backup processes by only backing up changes made since the last backup.
  • Store Locally and to Cloud: Provides flexibility in backup storage options, allowing users to store backups both locally and in the cloud for redundancy and disaster recovery purposes.
  • Full Database Recovery: Supports full database recovery, ensuring that entire databases can be restored in the event of data loss or corruption.
  • Table Data Recovery: Enables granular recovery by allowing users to restore specific tables or data sets within databases.

Why do we recommend it?

Many companies settle for a file backup in order to protect SQL Server. This is possible if you create a dump into a file, then the updated file will be picked up by an incremental backup service. However, it is just a lot simpler to get an application-specific tool like BDR Suite.

Vembu BDR Suite for Applications is one of the editions of the Vembu platform. The other five are VM, Server, Endpoints, Cloud VM, and Microsoft 365/Google Workspace. Each edition has a different pricing structure with most of them offering a free tier. There isn’t a free plan for the Applications edition.

The backup system will take an initial full backup of your SQL Server database instances and then take incremental backups on a schedule. The tool extracts data from the database and also stores transaction logs. Periodically, the service will perform another full backup.

You can get the full data extract stored as an MDF file and this can be used to migrate or replicate the database instance. This service lets you coordinate development, sandbox, and live databases.

The backup package doesn’t include a cloud storage space for repositories. However, you can set up a dual repository strategy with both local and cloud copies. Local repositories can be written to SAN, NAS, or tape and Vembu will interface with AWS S3, Azure Blob Storage, Google Cloud, or Wasabi for the security backup. Transfers and repositories are protected by AES-256 encryption. Vembu BDR Suite SQL Recovery

Who is it recommended for?

This service is priced per application, which in the case of SQL Server, means per instance. This price structure makes the price of Vembu scalable and suitable for businesses of all sizes. Unfortunately, Vembu BDR Suite for Applications is one of the two editions that don’t offer a free plan. During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to Vembu BDR Suite for Applications.


  • Control Over Repository Locations: Offers users control over where their backup repositories are located, allowing for customization based on specific business needs or compliance requirements.
  • Data Export Utility for Migration and Replication: Facilitates data migration and replication through a data export utility, simplifying the process of moving data between different environments or systems.
  • Encryption Protection: Provides encryption protection for both data in transit and data at rest, enhancing security and ensuring data confidentiality.
  • Rapid Data Recovery: Offers fast data recovery capabilities, minimizing downtime and enabling quick restoration of critical data in the event of data loss or disaster.
  • Options to Backup Data in Other Technologies: Supports backup of data from various technologies, allowing users to protect data from different sources within a single backup solution.


  • Cloud Storage Space Not Included: Unlike some competing solutions, Vembu BDR Suite does not include cloud storage space as part of its offering.

All editions of Vembu BDR suite are offered as a software package for Windows Server or Linux on a perpetual license. It is also possible to pay for that package on an annual subscription and there is an alternative deployment strategy of a SaaS platform, which is also a subscription service. You can assess Vembu BDR Suite for Applications with a 30-day free trial.


Vembu BDR Suite is our top pick for an SQL recovery tool because it provides application-specific backup strategies rather than just a file backup service. All data transfers and data storage is protected by encryption and you can restore an entire database or specific objects. This system is priced affordably with a choice of a perpetual license or an annual subscription plan.

Official Site:

OS: Windows Server, Linux, or cloud

2. Stellar SQL Repair (FREE DOWNLOAD)

Tested on: Windows Server & Linux

Stellar Repair for MS SQL screenshot

Stellar SQL Repair supports the recovery of MDF and NDF files in SQL versions 2008-2019 and is a popular tool amongst sysadmins and database administrators. Stellar works as both recovery and investigation tools by allowing you to navigate through the database tables, as well as viewing objects that are marked as “suspect”.

When we tested Stellar SQL Repair we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • Repair MDF and NDF: Capable of repairing both MDF (Master Data File) and NDF (Secondary Data File) files, ensuring comprehensive database recovery.
  • Identifies Potential Faults: Able to identify potential faults within SQL databases, facilitating proactive maintenance and preventing data loss.
  • Visually Explore Files: Provides tools to visually explore database files, allowing users to navigate and understand the structure of their databases effectively.

StellarInfo Sql Repair

Why do we recommend it?

Stellar SQL Repair, aka Stellar Repair for MS SQL, is a straightforward SQL Server system file repairer. It can fix corrupt MDF and NDF files and enable you to restore an entire database. It can regenerate data files to enable you to repopulate your recovered objects. This system doesn’t offer an object picker for selective single-object recovery.

As Stellar SQL Repair identifies potentially corrupt files, it earmarks them for you allowing you to visually see how much of your database may be impacted. Events such as SQL server crashes, limited disk space, inaccessible tables, and abrupt database termination are all reasons for Stellar SQL Repair to label them as suspect.

You’ll have the option to parse through the corrupted database and navigate tables through a tree-like structure. This not only helps to understand the scope of what was corrupted or deleted but also helps you verify that the data after the repair is formatted correctly. In this same view, you can also run searches based on partial and whole-word matches.

If your SQL Server log file is corrupted, Stellar SQL Repair can apply algorithms to both repair the MDF file, and restore access to the log file. Granular recovery of tables, keys, triggers, user-defined functions, views, and indexes are all possible through Stellar.

The recovered data can then be exported in database form, or through a variety of XML data types. This flexibility allows for queries of corrupted objects that are not repairable to be saved in text form for manual re-entry or review.

Who is it recommended for?

An advantage that this tool has over the others on this list is that it will run on Linux. Although SQL Server is closely associated with Windows, many software providers of SQL Server utilities seem to forget that the DBMS is also available for Ubuntu, SLES, and RHEL.

During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to Stellar SQL Repair.


  • Easy to Use: Stellar SQL Repair offers a user-friendly interface, requiring minimal time to learn and enabling quick proficiency in using the platform.
  • Can Monitor and Alert on SQL Events: Capable of monitoring SQL events such as limited disk space and crashes, providing proactive alerts to help prevent potential issues.
  • Offers Flexible Licensing: Provides flexible licensing options suitable for organizations of any size, accommodating varying needs and budgets.


  • Could Use More Database Visualization: Like other tools, Stellar SQL Repair could benefit from enhanced database visualization features to provide deeper insights into database structures and contents.

Stellar SQL Repair offers three types of lifetime licenses starting at $349.00. It’s important to note that if you want to be able to restore all types of SQL database objects you will need the Platinum version which is $449.00. A free download is available that allows you to scan and preview recoverable data.

Stellar SQL Repair Get a FREE Download

3. EaseUS MS SQL Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

EaseUS MS SQL Recovery

EaseUS MS SQL Recovery is highly effective in retrieving lost or corrupted SQL database files, ensuring minimal disruption to business operations. Its advanced algorithms and selective recovery options allow users to target specific database items or recover entire databases efficiently.

Key Features:

  • Advanced Data Recovery: Recovers lost or corrupted SQL database files efficiently.
  • Wide Compatibility: Supports various SQL Server versions, ensuring broad usability.
  • Selective Recovery: Allows users to recover specific database items or entire databases.
  • User-Friendly Interface: Features a simple interface for easy navigation and operation.
  • Data Preview: Offers a preview of recoverable data before the actual recovery process.

The tool supports a wide range of SQL Server versions, making it versatile and reliable for various environments. The data preview feature provides users with a clear view of recoverable data before initiating the recovery process, ensuring accuracy and allowing you to clearly see exactly what data you’re going to recover. This is a great feature, especially for larger SQL databases that may take time to fully restore.

EaseUS MS SQL Recovery Data Export

Why do we recommend it?

EaseUS MS SQL Recovery is recommended for its robust ability to recover lost or corrupted SQL database files with ease. Its user-friendly interface and data preview feature make it accessible and efficient for database administrators.

Who is it recommended for?

This tool is ideal for SQL database administrators who need a reliable solution for recovering lost or corrupted databases. It is also suitable for businesses of all sizes looking to safeguard their SQL data and ensure quick recovery in case of data loss.


  • Effective Data Recovery: Successfully retrieves lost or damaged SQL database files, minimizing downtime.
  • Compatibility: Supports multiple versions of SQL Server, enhancing its versatility.
  • Selective Recovery Option: Enables targeted recovery of specific database items, saving time and resources.
  • Ease of Use: The user-friendly interface ensures easy operation, even for non-experts.
  • Preview Feature: Allows users to preview recoverable data, ensuring accurate recovery.


  • Cost: The tool can be expensive for small businesses or individual users.
  • Resource Intensive: Recovery processes may require substantial system resources, impacting performance.

The free version has limited capabilities, requiring an upgrade for full functionality. You can start by registering for a free trial.

4. SysTools SQL Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

systools sql recovery tool

If you’re in a pinch and need your SQL server up and running fast, SysTools SQL Database Recovery takes a simple no-nonsense approach to database restoration. Through a simple yet powerful interface, SysTools can repair corrupted MDF files and recover deleted database objects that were once lost.

Key Features:

  • Backup and Recover: Provides functionality for both backing up and recovering databases, as well as migrating data between different database systems.
  • Database Viewer: Includes a database viewer tool that allows users to visualize the contents and structure of their databases.
  • Repair Corrupted MDFs: Capable of repairing corrupted MDF (Master Data File) files, helping to restore data integrity in case of corruption.
  • Extracts from Database: Enables extraction of specific data or objects from databases, allowing users to retrieve only the necessary information.
  • Object-only Option Without Data: Offers an option to extract database objects without including the associated data, providing flexibility in data recovery and migration processes.

Why do we recommend it?

SysTools SQL Recovery provides both a system repair and a data recovery service. It can rebuild your instance if your database files become corrupted. It also provides a backup system that enables you to recover individual objects, such as tables, triggers, and indexes. The table recovery system also provides the option to recover data.

SysTools works in a multitude of environments and can run on 2000/2003/XP/Vista/7/8/8.1 and Windows 10, making it a great option if you’re looking to run a SQL repair on an older server. While some recovery tools only allow the recovery of tables, SysTools can retrieve and export indexes, keys, triggers, and rules, saving countless hours of rebuilding.

SysToolGroup Sql Backup Recovery

The built-in database viewer allows you to quickly preview your tables, and other database objects to understand the scope of what is recoverable and aid in the troubleshooting process. Exports can be done with or without schema data and auto fetching helps pull information like SQL server name when exporting databases. All these features combined help streamline the migration and recovery process of your SQL data.

When first launched, SysTools SQL Database Recovery scans the entire database for corrupted MDF files and then lists pertinent information at the end of the scan. This initial scan gives you a solid idea of just how much of your data you’ll be able to recover in your SQL recovery process. After the scan, you’ll have the option to either recover the damaged data and export it or run a repair on the faulty database.

Who is it recommended for?

This package is a good service for any business that relies on SQL Server databases. The package installs on Windows Server and it needs to be running on the same host as your databases. It doesn’t operate across a network. The tool can work out pricey if you have your databases on many servers.


  • Database Structure Visualization: The database viewer tool simplifies the process of understanding and visualizing the structure of SQL databases, aiding in database management tasks.
  • Affordable for Most Businesses: SysTools SQL Recovery is priced affordably, making it accessible to small and medium-sized businesses with budget constraints.


  • Not the Best Option for Enterprises: While suitable for SMBs, SysTools SQL Recovery lacks the scalability, advanced features, and support required by larger enterprises with complex database environments.

If you’re looking to migrate the entire database a built-in migration wizard uses SQL script to copy and move entire database files from one server to another in just a few clicks. SysTools SQL Database Recovery is currently $249.00 for a personal license and offers a site license for $1499.00. You can read more about its pricing tiers on its product page.

5. DataNumen SQL Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

datanumen sql recovery tool

DataNumen SQL Recovery has seen major success over the years with over 10 million users over its lifetime. A major role in this tool’s success is its ability to simplify the SQL recovery process.

Key Features:

  • Easy to Use: DataNumen offers a user-friendly interface, making it accessible to users with varying levels of technical expertise.
  • MDF File Analysis: Provides tools for analyzing MDF (Master Data File) files, allowing users to understand the structure and content of their databases.
  • Damaged MDF Repair: Capable of repairing damaged MDF files, helping users recover data from corrupt or inaccessible databases.
  • Repair NDF Files: Supports repair of NDF (Secondary Data File) files, extending its capabilities beyond just MDF file repair.

Why do we recommend it?

DataNumen SQL Recovery is a very similar package to the SysTools SQL Database Recovery utility. It can repair damaged MDF files, and it will provide new MDF, which you should then access through Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio to restore individual objects.

The interface is extremely simple and the entire recovery process feels intuitive enough where even a junior technician would be comfortable using this tool. All you have to do is select the damaged MDF file, and specify the SQL server it originated from. If you’re unsure of what server the file came from, DataNumen will analyze the file and select the correct format automatically.

DataNumen SQL Recovery

DataNumen runs dozens of fixes on the file and automatically saves the new file marked as “fixed.mdf”. In the same windows, you’ll have the ability to connect to your SQL environment and mount the newly created (and hopefully repaired) MDF file. After authentication, you’ll be able to see the SQL recovery process in action, and eventually, get a message notifying you that it has completed.

While this entire process is streamlined, DataNumen does not skip out on any details or features. The tool fully supports the latest Windows Server environments and can be run on systems as old as Windows 95. DataNumen goes beyond just data in tables and can recover views, rules, sparse columns, indexes, and triggers.

Along with your standard MDF files, DataNumen can also recover and repair associated NDF files as large as 16TB and integrate its recovery tools with Windows shell.

Who is it recommended for?

This tool is purely a repair tool for MDF files. It doesn’t provide its own interface for data recovery. As such, it provides less functionality than the SysTools SQL Database Recovery, even though it is more expensive. This software needs to be installed on each database host computer because it doesn’t operate across a network. During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to DataNumen SQL Recovery.


  • Interface Simplicity: Its straightforward interface streamlines the data recovery process, making it intuitive for users to navigate and utilize its features effectively.
  • Can Run on Older Windows OS: Compatible with older Windows operating systems, making it suitable for use with legacy databases that may still be running on older infrastructure.


  • Not Suitable for Larger databases: While DataNumen is effective at repairing and managing databases, it may not be as well-suited for handling larger databases with complex structures or extensive data volumes.

DataNumen starts at $499.95 for one license and offers deep discounts for larger volumes. You can view the volume discounts in more detail on its pricing page.

6. DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

Diskinternals SQL Recovery Tool

DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery is a flexible SQL repair tool that can recover database files that were created on either Windows or Linux servers. This means DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery can be used for recovery in NTFS and ReFS as well as Ext2/3/4 in Linux.

When we tested DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • Repair or Recover: Provides functionality for both repairing and recovering data from various storage media.
  • Recover Files from Windows or Linux: Supports data recovery from both Windows and Linux operating systems, offering versatility in data retrieval.
  • Runs on Windows: DiskInternals operates on the Windows platform, allowing for compatibility with Windows-based systems.

Why do we recommend it?

DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery competes well with our top pick because it can repair damaged system files for SQL Server and it also offers a view of database objects that can be restored. You have the option to store a copy of your database to a disk to protect against damage.

The platform has two types of MSSQL recovery modes for repairing database files.

  • “Repair existing database” mode: when database files cannot be opened, MSSQL Recovery works around inaccessible or damaged files and boosts your chances for recovering the rest of the tables.
  • “Recover database from disk” mode: deleted databases can be restored with MSSQL Recovery

Both of these modes allow you to navigate and view the files before the export and support all national and Unicode characters. Data recovery can be performed on servers as old as MS SQL Server 2000 and is compatible with the latest versions of Windows Server.

DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery

Who is it recommended for?

Although this is a nice little tool, it doesn’t exceed the functionality of SysTools SQL Recovery even though it is more expensive. Both of these recommended SQL Server recovery tools have free trials, so you should try them both before buying. However, the lower price of the SysTools SQL Recovery utility makes it more attractive.

During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery.


  • Uses a Simple Interface: Employs a straightforward interface suitable for users of varying technical abilities while still being able to handle larger databases effectively.
  • Great Option for Smaller Databases: Well-suited for small and medium-sized databases, providing reliable data recovery solutions tailored to the needs of smaller-scale operations.
  • Offers a Free Trial: Provides a free trial version, allowing users to evaluate its features and performance before making a purchase decision.


  • Could Use More Database Visualization: Lacks advanced database visualization features, which may limit the ability to understand and analyze database structures in depth.

DiskInternals MSSQL needs a minimum of 2GB of RAM, 60MB of disk space and can run on operating systems using Windows 7 or greater. Currently, DiskInternals MSSQL Recovery is available for $399.95 per license and comes with a free trial that includes all features enabled except for data export.

7. Aryson SQL Database Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

Aryson SQL Database Recovery

Aryson SQL Database Recovery is another top tool admins can use to recover their corrupted or missing SQL data files. Aryson can repair both MDF and NDF for MS SQL Server 2000 to 2016 and is compatible with Windows 10 and all earlier versions of Windows. Like many of our top choices, Aryson focuses on pairing its advanced repair methods with an easy-to-use and simple interface.

When we tested Aryson SQL Database Recovery we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • MDF and NDF Repair: Capable of repairing both MDF and NDF files, ensuring comprehensive database recovery.
  • MDF File Viewer: Includes a viewer for MDF files, allowing users to inspect the contents and structure of their databases.
  • Extract Data to XML: Provides functionality to extract data from databases and save it in XML format, facilitating data analysis and manipulation.

Why do we recommend it?

Aryson SQL Database Recovery can repair MDFs and NDFs and it also includes a data viewer so you can view and select objects to restore individually. The tool also enables you to extract database data to an XML file. This software will run on Windows Server and Windows but not Linux.

ArysonTechnologies Aryson SQL Database Recovery

After browsing to your MDF file Aryson SQL Database Recovery works to scan and fix corrupted database objects, recover deleted entities, and repair header file corruption. Once completed you’ll be able to manually navigate through the database and preview the recovered files, and even select them individually to be saved in their original format.

Files or databases can be saved in several different formats including XML, server compatible script, or as a database snapshot. A single license of Aryson SQL Database Recovery starts at $129.00 and is valid for five machines and an unlimited amount of recovered files.

Who is it recommended for?

This tool is a lot cheaper than the others on this list and that factor will appeal to many small businesses. It provides just about all the functionality of SysTools SQL Recovery. Like most other tools in this review, it needs to be installed on the same host as the database that it is recovering.

During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to Aryson SQL Database Recovery.


  • Licensing for an Unlimited Number of Files: Offers licensing options that allow users to recover an unlimited number of files, providing flexibility and scalability.
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee: A 30-day money-back guarantee gives users confidence in the product’s performance and reliability.
  • Simple Interface: Features a user-friendly interface that is both simple to use and provides informative feedback, enhancing user experience and efficiency.
  • Windows Server Support: Compatible with both modern and older versions of Windows Server, ensuring compatibility with various server environments.


  • Overwhelming Features: Some features may not be fully utilized by smaller businesses with simpler database environments, potentially leading to underutilization of the software’s capabilities.

Aryson SQL Database Recovery offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and includes a free demo you can try first to view what data you’ll be able to recover.

8. Kernel SQL Database Recovery

Tested on: Windows Server

Kernel SQL Database Recovery

Kernel SQL Database Recovery is a well-designed SQL repair tool that has a sleek and updated feel to its interface, making it stand out from its counterparts. Currently Kernel supports MS SQL Server 2019, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012, 2008 R2, 2008, 2005 and 2000.

When we tested Kernel SQL Database Recovery we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • Scans for Corrupt Files: Capable of scanning for corrupt SQL database files, identifying issues that may hinder database functionality.
  • Repairs MDF and NDF Files: Provides functionality to repair both MDF and NDF files, ensuring comprehensive database recovery.
  • Inserts Data into Databases: Offers the ability to insert data into databases, facilitating data recovery and restoration processes.

Why do we recommend it?

Kernel SQL Database Recovery is almost identical to the Aryson utility. It can fix MDFs and NDFs and it lets you pick objects to restore. The software is available in two editions and the top one allows recovery to a live database. This software runs on Windows and Windows Server.

The tool starts by running a basic scan that looks to repair or recover MDF/NDF files. Automatic detection scans the file and can identify the SQL environment the file originated from. The advanced scan looks through your tables, triggers, primary keys, and functions for impacted areas that may need repair.

Kernel SQL Database Recovery fully supports an in-depth preview feature that allows you to view tables in hierarchical order and verify the results of the repair process. While most preview features are limited to how much you can view at once, Kernel SQL Database Recovery can load up to 1000 records per page, making it a good option for massive databases where an extensive review is required.

Once those areas are identified the system automatically makes those changes and saves its work as a separate file. Restored files can be saved in a number of formats, or applied directly to a live SQL server.

NucleusTechnologies Kernel SQL Database Recovery

Who is it recommended for?

Kernel SQL Database Recovery has a different pricing structure to Aryson, which means either one can work out cheaper depending on your circumstances. The base Aryson price includes licenses for five hosts, which the Kernel SQL Database Recovery price is higher but covers a whole site. There is also a version for use by data recovery services.

During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to Kernel SQL Database Recovery.


  • Simple Lightweight SQL Recovery Tool: Kernel SQL Database Recovery is designed to be a simple and lightweight tool, offering ease of use and efficient performance.
  • Supports Database Visualization and Data Entry: Provides features for database visualization and data entry, enabling users to interact with and manage their databases effectively.
  • Records per Page: Offers support for displaying up to 1000 records per page, enhancing usability and data management capabilities.


  • Priced Higher Than Similar Tools: Kernel SQL Database Recovery may have a higher price point compared to similar tools, potentially impacting its affordability for some users.

The evaluation version allows you to view some of your data in a recovered state and can be upgraded directly from the free trial. Licensing for Kernel SQL Database Recovery starts at $299.00 for a single organization and unlimited files. If you’re looking to recover data from .bak files, restore to SQL script, or restore to a live SQL Server, you’ll need the more expensive $499.00 license.

9. ApexSQL Recover

Tested on: Windows Server


ApexSQL Recover aids in recovering damaged, lost or dropped data from your SQL environment through a sleek interface with several unique features not listed in our previously listed tools. When we tested ApexSQL Recover we found the following key features.

Key Features:

  • Data Repair: Capable of repairing corrupted or damaged SQL database files, ensuring data integrity and reliability.
  • Backup and Recovery: Provides functionality for both backing up and recovering SQL databases, offering comprehensive data protection.
  • Rollback System: Incorporates a rollback system, allowing users to revert database changes to previous states if necessary.

Why do we recommend it?

ApexSQL Recover is a much more sophisticated tool than the others on this list. While the other recovery tools here rely on being able to repair SQL Server system files and pick objects from that, this system creates its own backup files periodically, offering rollback options.

While most tools on this list focus on fixing corrupted files, ApexSQL Recover positions itself as a part of the backup, recovery, and testing process. Apex positions itself between the backup process allowing it to capture transactions made during the backup process and replay them.

If you’ve ever accidentally dropped a table or overwritten entire datasets, you’ll know the fear of wondering if your backups really work. ApexSQL Recover features backup options for such occasions that can replace specific data, without rolling back the entire database.

Row-level recovery is achieved by comparing the different transaction log data files and giving you the option to recover the difference. This helps fix smaller mistakes in live environments quickly without causing database downtime. This same methodology can be applied to entire datasets through their rollback function.

Recovery options in ApexSQL Recover are extremely flexible and allow you to roll back to specific points in time, and replay DDL syntax from previous events. Finally, data can be pulled from backups and extracted into a live environment without having to restore to it.

ApexSQL Recover does an excellent job of guiding you through the recovery process. For example, when recovering a dropped table ApexSQL guides you through the process step-by-step and gives you a range of technical options without feeling overbearing.

ApexSql SQL Recover

Who is it recommended for?

As you would expect, the greater capabilities of ApexSQL Recover comes at a higher price. It is sold as a subscription per year rather than a perpetual license. The tool is only available as part of a package of six SQL Server management utilities, called ApexSQL Operations Plus Toolkit for SQL Server.

During our testing, we identified the following pros and cons related to ApexSQL Recover.


  • Ideal for large Enterprises: ApexSQL Recover is well-suited for large enterprise organizations with complex database environments, offering robust features and scalability.
  • Sleek and Scalable Interface: Features a modern and scalable interface, enhancing usability and adaptability to different user needs and preferences.


  • Priced Higher Than Similar Tools: ApexSQL Recover has a higher price point compared to similar tools, potentially making it less accessible to users with budget constraints.

Currently, ApexSQL Recover is priced at $1199.00 per instance for 12-months. A free trial is also available with limited restore functions.

SQL Recovery Tool FAQs

How do I repair a corrupt SQL database?

The easiest way to repair a damaged SQL database is to restore the instance from a backup. If you don’t have a backup system in place, your next best option is to use native recovery tools in the DBMS or a third-party tool. You also have a chance of reassembling a database by working through the database system’s log files. 

How do I restore a deleted SQL database?

In order to restore a deleted database, operate the restore processes built into your DBMS or restore from a backup copy.