Looking to customize your company in a staging environment to test the changes without interrupting your production organization or its user? Or do you want an organization where users can log in and test the new features before production-ready? Or just want to log into a Salesforce organization to get training or development that looks like your production organization.
Well, if your answer to all these questions is “Yes,” you are in the right spot.
This post will provide knowledge about Salesforce Sandbox, various types of Sandbox, steps to create one, and a lot more.
What Is a Salesforce Sandbox?
A Salesforce Sandbox environment facilitates you to test new code, configuration, and automation without affecting your production instance.
It’s like a copy of your production instance with a few or all your metadata and data per your sandbox type.
Simply put, a Salesforce Sandbox is a test environment where you can create and copy metadata from your production instance. It’s a separate section where you can test with data, like Accounts, Leads, and Contacts.
Sandbox creates your Salesforce org copies in a different environment and uses them for training, development, and testing without interrupting your apps and data in your production org.
When to Use a Salesforce Sandbox?
As we have discussed, Sandboxes creates your Salesforce org’s copy in a different environment. You can use them for development, training, and testing without affecting applications and data in your production org.
Salesforce provides sandboxes and a pack of deployment tools to allow you to perform various functions.
- You can separate development and customization jobs from your production environment until you are all set to deploy changes.
- You can offer a training environment.
- The test changes against replicas of your production’s users and data.
- Sync separate changes into one deployment to production.
Whether you are an admin adding features to an organization, an only developer writing code, or a team of expert developers performing to improve your organization, you should choose the right tool to work in the right environment to develop and deploy modifications successfully to your production organization.
What Are the Different Types of Sandboxes in Salesforce?
There Are Four Types of Salesforce Sandbox Environments:
1. Developer Sandbox
This sandbox is aimed at development and testing in a detached environment. A Developer Sandbox holds a replica of your production org’s configuration (metadata), which includes custom object definitions, custom settings, Visualforce pages, Apex classes and triggers, price books, dashboards, reports, and more.
Various users can log in and share one Developer sandbox. Still, this sandbox aims to offer an environment where changes under the active development can be separated until those changes are all set to share.
Developer sandboxes offer limited data storage and files for various development and testing jobs.
2. Developer Pro Sandbox
Developer Pro Sandbox is also aimed for development and testing in a separate and detached environment and can host more data sets than a Developer sandbox.
A Developer Pro sandbox also includes a replica of your production org’s configuration (metadata). You can use this sandbox to manage more development and QA jobs and for user training or integration testing.
3. Partial Copy Sandbox
This sandbox is used as a testing environment, which includes a replica of your production org’s configuration (metadata) and your production org’s data sample by a sandbox template.
You can use this sandbox for QA tasks, like integration testing, user acceptance testing, and training.
A Partial Copy of the sandbox is your production organization’s metadata copy, like Developer and Developer Pro sandboxes.
Additionally, the sandbox copy engine samples data from your production org based on what a sandbox template has defined.
The sandbox copy engine holds a special copy strategy to manage Partial Copy sandbox development. The copy strategy learns about the data relationships defined in your production organization’s standard and customized object schema and ensures that sample records maintain valid bonds among these.
When you create valid subsets of your organization’s data using sandbox templates, you can use Partial Copy sandboxes for development, training, and testing purposes. They are best suited for lead testing and complete performance.
4. Full Sandbox
This sandbox is intended for a testing environment. Just Full sandboxes support load testing, performance testing, and staging.
Full sandboxes are a copy of your production org, embracing all data, like metadata and object records and attachments. The span of refresh interval makes it challenging to use these sandboxes for development.
Applying a sandbox template is usually recommended, so your sandbox includes just the records you want for testing and other jobs.
When you craft a Full sandbox, you must also decide how much Chatter activity and field tracking history to include.
Omit field tracking is the default, but you can consider up to 180 days of field tracking. If you track the field history in your production org for various objects, you should specify fewer days that may avoid excess data generation.
Chatter activity can append a good amount of time to your Full sandbox copy.
You can limit the field history range you copy and copy your Chatter data if you need to test your use cases.
Full sandboxes meet various other purposes also, but the sandbox size and refresh interval length don’t create an environment that stays updated with your production organization.
It’s suggested to use Full sandboxes for integration testing, data load testing, performance, load testing, user acceptance testing, and staging purposes. This environment is specifically for supporting full performance and load testing.
Salesforce Developer Sandbox Considerations
In the new Salesforce Sandbox environment, before you create, develop, and test, you should ensure the below aspects:
1. Customer Data
In Full or Partial, you must not forget that the sandbox includes full or partial customer data details. It may contain bank-relevant information, like credit card details and account details. You should consider them specifically while updating anything.
The Sandbox’s org ID and production org’s IDs are different. Because of this, when a sandbox is built, the data fails to get synced or updated automatically and simultaneously in the organization.
3. Estimate of Completion Time
Various factors affect the project’s expected completion time. It can take months, days, or hours to accomplish, relying on the data sets’ size in the sandboxes.
When you refresh, you need to ensure that the current production environment’s copy is created, which indicates that you can lose the configuration and data if the existing production org doesn’t have it.
5. Email Deliverability
By default, sandbox email delivery is set to “System Email-only.” You can easily change the setting to “All Mail” if you need to test particular email features in Sandbox.
6. Adding Email Addresses
In every user email, a “.invalid path” is automatically added at the end. You can update your email addresses if you want every user to receive system-generated emails from the sandbox. This way, you can remove the “.invalid” tag at the email’s end.
7. App Licensing
You must test somewhat extra during the testing phase when user licensing is needed. For the same, you need to plan for adding extra time to your schedule.
8. Schedules and Batches Jobs
Before moving on to the next, you should check if you have any scheduled jobs running while testing. Moreover, identify what’s irrelevant for the sandbox environment but has been copied from the production org.
9. Payment Gateways
You shouldn’t forget that every payment gateway record is sent to “test payment gateways.” The “Test Endpoint” checkbox is always disabled for the same.
10. Real Data for Testing
You should always use real sample data during testing in the sandbox, ensuring that the sandbox systems perform as they would in a live situation.
How To Create a Salesforce Sandbox?
1. Required Interface
Salesforce Classic (not there in all organizations) and Lightning Experience
2. Required Editions
Professional, Unlimited, Database.com, Performance, and Enterprise.
Required User Permissions:
- To View a Sandbox: View Setup and Configuration
- To Create, Delete, Activate, and Refresh a Sandbox: Manage Sandbox
Salesforce copies your production organization’s metadata to a sandbox org when you create a sandbox.
- From setup, in the Quick Find box, enter Sandboxes.
- Then, choose Sandboxes to see and manage your current sandboxes or create a new one.
Salesforce Sandbox is like an asset to various businesses. The developers use Sandboxes to create and test changes for performance testing, staging, SIT, training, UAT, etc. Using Salesforce Sandbox, you can craft multiple copies of your production organization in different environments.
You can also reap the benefits of Salesforce Sandbox besides performing your other jobs. You can connect with Salesforce consultants to understand it better.