BACKUP SERVICE MASTER KEY (Transact-SQL)

Exports the service master key.

Applies to: SQL Server (SQL Server 2008 through current version).

Topic link icon Transact-SQL Syntax Conventions

Syntax
BACKUP SERVICE MASTER KEY TO FILE = 'path_to_file' 
    ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = 'password'
Arguments
FILE ='path_to_file'

Specifies the complete path, including file name, to the file to which the service master key will be exported. This may be a local path or a UNC path to a network location.

PASSWORD ='password'

Is the password used to encrypt the service master key in the backup file. This password is subject to complexity checks. For more information, see Password Policy.

Remarks

The service master key should be backed up and stored in a secure, off-site location. Creating this backup should be one of the first administrative actions performed on the server.

Permissions

Requires CONTROL SERVER permission on the server.

Examples

In the following example, the service master key is backed up to a file.

BACKUP SERVICE MASTER KEY TO FILE = 'c:\temp_backups\keys\service_master_key' ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = '3dH85Hhk003GHk2597gheij4';