Derrick Qin
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How to restore a deleted BigQuery Dataset

How to restore a deleted BigQuery Dataset

Derrick Qin's photo
Derrick Qin
·Nov 24, 2022·

3 min read

Table of contents

  • Set up the test BigQuery Dataset
  • Delete the Dataset
  • How to restore a BigQuery Dataset
  • Summary

"Oops, I accidentally deleted my BigQuery Dataset! What should I do!?" If this is you at the moment, don't panic. You are in good hands now!

In this tutorial, I'll work through a lab, in which I deleted a BigQuery Dataset and then recovered it with all the tables and views. If you are in a rush, feel free to scroll down to the recovery steps.

Set up the test BigQuery Dataset

This is my setup in BigQuery, I have two tables and a view. image.png

Dataset: image.png

Two tables: image.png


View: image.png

Delete the Dataset

From the BigQuery UI, I deleted the Dataset: image.png

Verify if it was deleted: image.png

How to restore a BigQuery Dataset

Time to restore it!

Find out the tables in the Dataset

First thing first, let's find out what tables were in my Dataset. Can't remember them? Don't worry.

I understand that you may inherit this from someone or you just don't remember the names of your tables and views. That's fine. Here is a query that you can use:

  TABLE_SCHEMA = "dataset_17102022";

After running it in my BigQuery project, I found the table names: image.png

How does it work? The above query uses TABLE_STORAGE_TIMELINE view in BigQuery INFORMATION SCHEMA to find out the tables that contain data.

Recreate the BigQuery Dataset

Recreate the BigQuery Dataset with the same name:

 bq --location=US mk -d dataset_17102022


Now I recreated the Dataset, but it is empty. Let's recreate the tables and recover the data.

Restore the tables and data

To restore the table, we will use time travel feature from BigQuery.

Run the bq command below. Note that I used -3600000, which is specified in milliseconds using a relative offset. It can also be specified as milliseconds since the Unix epoch.

bq cp airflow-talk:dataset_17102022.table-no-partition@-3600000 airflow-talk:dataset_17102022.table-no-partition

Verified that table-no-partition was recreated with data:



Same process to restore table-partition table:

bq cp airflow-talk:dataset_17102022.table-partition@-3600000 airflow-talk:dataset_17102022.table-partition


Recreate the view

There is no straightforward way to recreate the views. It is always a good idea to store the DDL in the source repository. But if you don't have it now, you can try finding the view creation logs in Cloud Logging using the name of the view. In my case, the log is here:


To recreate this view, I ran the below SQL statement:

  dataset_17102022.test_view1 AS (
    ID = 1 )

And my view was recreated:



In this tutorial, I set up a lab to delete and restore a BigQuery Dataset.

Everybody has oops moments, deleting a BigQuery Dataset may be one of them. I hope following the above instruction helps you. Let me know if you have any questions.

Good luck!

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