- Suite Enterprise includes one standard sandbox and one partial premium sandbox instance.
- Suite Enterprise Plus includes one standard sandbox and one full production premium sandbox instance.
- Support Enterprise comes with a standard sandbox.
With these plans, you can also contact your sales representative or Zendesk Customer Support to purchase additional premium sandbox instances as an add-on.
Premium Sandbox provides a test environment that mirrors your production instance of Zendesk Support or the help desk functionality in Zendesk Suite in configuration and, potentially, data. This allows you to accurately test updates to workflows, experiment with integrations, and provide training for new agents in an environment that closely mirrors the production environment.
This article contains the following topics:
Premium Sandbox setup choices
Premium sandboxes allow you to copy the configuration and tickets from your production environment.
Before creating a new sandbox, you must configure a default group for your account.
When creating a premium sandbox, you’ll be able to create set-up options according to your plan. For example, Suite Enterprise customers will be able to create a partial premium sandbox, and Suite Enterprise Plus customers will be able to create a full production sandbox. The content copied for all levels includes the following:
- Dynamic content
- Ticket fields
- Ticket forms
- User fields
- Organization field
- Custom roles
- Shared views
- Shared macros
- Trigger categories
- Agent level users
- Group memberships
When you create a metadata premium sandbox, no non-closed tickets or associated end users will be copied.
When you create a partial premium sandbox, up to 10,000 non-closed tickets and associated end users will be copied.
When you create a full production premium sandbox, up to 100,000 non-closed tickets and the related end users will be copied.
Regardless of the status of the Agent Workspace in your production environment, it is disabled by default on new sandboxes. If you want use the Agent Workspace in your sandbox, you must activate it manually.
Sell isn't supported in sandbox environments.
For more information about creating and managing premium sandboxes, see Managing Premium Sandboxes.
Replication occurs automatically when you create a sandbox through Admin Center. The replication retrieves data from the production instance and creates the configuration and content in the sandbox, creating a new subdomain. The process will not affect the performance of your production instance. Data is only retrieved from the production instance, so nothing will be added, updated, or deleted there. The configuration of your sandbox instance will change rapidly while the replication is occurring, so it's best to avoid using it during the process.
The time to complete a replication varies depending on the amount of content involved. A simple metadata copy with a small amount of fields and business rules can take less time, ranging from a few minutes to a few days. A full copy with 100,000 tickets and the related users and organizations can take a week or more to complete. When the replication is complete, the status of the sandbox changes to Active.
To complete the replication, Zendesk creates an internal copy of the data to be migrated. Once this migration is complete, this copy is deleted. A deleted Premium Sandbox is not recoverable.
Your choice of sandbox determines the maximum number of replications you can perform per month, as well as how long your sandbox and its data are persisted in the event you do not use your sandbox for a significant period of time. When you do not use your sandbox, the sandbox, and its data are deleted after a 30-day or a 90-day period of disuse.
This table describes the maximum number of replications you can perform per month for a sandbox, and how long sandboxes are retained:
|Premium - metadata copy||Premium - partial copy||Premium - production copy|
|Maximum number of replications per month||5||10||15|
|Sandbox data retention||30 days||90 days||90 days|
Limitations on replicated data
The replication will be as close of an exact copy of the production instance as possible. However, there are several situations where the copy cannot be exact:
- Sandbox test environments apply to Zendesk Support functionality in Zendesk Suite only and do not include, for example, Talk or Guide.
- Brands are replicated, but since brand names need to be unique across all Zendesk instances, they cannot be an exact match. The brand names will be modified to contain a unique string.
- User emails will be invalidated before being added to the sandbox instance by the use of the @example.com domain. This is to prevent emails from being inadvertently sent to your users. This includes both agents and end-users. An administrator can reverse the invalid emails for testing by editing the users' email addresses.
- APIs are enabled, but API tokens must be recreated.
- Apps and EAP functionality are disabled within the sandbox.
- Open tickets are migrated, but archived closed tickets, linked incident tickets, and ticket sharing agreements are not.
- Targets requiring a password will be replicated, but they will have invalid credentials and be in a disabled state.
- Any objects that are broken in production will not be replicated. For example, a trigger with a condition that refers to an organization that no longer exists will not be replicated to the sandbox.
- External email addresses are not copied to the sandbox.
- Changes made within a premium sandbox are not copied automatically into the production account and must be manually reproduced within the production account.
- Only the items identified in this article are replicated.
- Legacy agents can't be replicated. If you want them to be replicated, you must assign new roles to them.
- Views, triggers, and automations may appear in a different order in the sandbox.
- Inactive configurations are replicated, but business rules (for example, triggers and automations) that have conditions or actions which reference an inactive ticket field are not replicated.
re: Apps and EAP functionality are disabled within the sandbox.
I have a question about it. is there any way to create the sandbox account with all the Apps I have in production? (besides doing it manually)
For context, I'm trying to replicate the same UI & functionality from production in order to test it as a whole while adding new internal developed apps. For now I have been adding the apps one by one which takes time if you have quite a few.
Since the App functionality is disabled in the Sandbox instance, I'm afraid that the |apps installed will also not be replicated from the production to your Sandbox. You may need to re-install them manually for UI purposes but functionality will not be guaranteed to work.
I could not find an answer for this.
When you create a partial premium sandbox, up to 10,000 non-closed tickets and associated end users will be copied. how does it handle PII and sensitive information in those tickets? Notes?
What is the "standard" sandbox in the Note at the top of this article? Is it the "metadata premium" sandbox described in the article? If so, you should change the terminology to make it consistent.
Also, if sandboxes do not replicate Guide, is there a way to keep drafts of existing articles to be published at a later date?
I just created a Sandbox to be used as a testing tool for some new customer care agents. I have Zendesk Enterprise Suite so essentially it allows me to generate a full production replica in the sandbox. One thing I noticed it doesn't fully replicate is that only 4 of the 8 ticket forms that we use were replicated. Unfortunately, those 4 were not any of the ticket forms I really needed to be replicated. Does anyone know why this may be happening or how I can ensure that all (or at least the forms I want) are replicated? I have stared at this for a while now and cannot figure out the logic as to why it is pulling the forms that it is and not the others.
Anyone else experience this?
Hi Chuck Hemesath
Not sure this helps any but I recently had a similar issue. The premium sandbox replicated our production instance but not all of the business rules (triggers) were replicated. I have no idea why this didn't replicate correctly and TBH haven't followed it up with Zendesk.
Just thought I'd add it here as well.
Chad Susa, sounds like the same problem, different symptom. I have not been able to figure out any sort of logic as to why some things are being copied while other/similar things are not. It's been a real show stopper for us as we really need for these particular ticket forms to be replicated in the sandbox and for some reason they are not being replicated. Very frustrating.
Hi Chuck Hemesath
Investigating this kind of issue requires reviewing our logs. So, in order for us to assist you further - I have created a ticket on your behalf. One of our advocates will reach out to you to further assist you on this.
Have a great day!
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