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Disaster Recovery and Solution deployment

I'm looking for feedback on how others run their deployments from their Sandbox Environments to Production.

At the moment we have a Dynamics 365 with a Production and Sandbox environments. Our developers have finished their work in Sandbox and we're looking to deploy to production. As a part of this we are looking to protect what's already in production and roll back if possible.

I am aware of the backup option for each environment located here ( however since I can't take these backups offline and examine I'd like to know what's being backed up. Is it all the data in Dynamics 365, all Customizations, Solutions and CDS Entities? Or are there things left out. Is it possible to take this data out of the cloud to keep it in case of an emergency? Are there any DR steps that someone should be taking beyond this?

Secondly, how do you manage your deployment? I can export the solution from our Sandbox but it is greyed out on our production instance, so I can't back up the older version before deploying the newer one. Would this make sense to do? 

Do you have a process for deploying updates to solutions that you'd be able to share?


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