A website is one of those things you can’t imagine a business without.
Whether it’s expanding your business or your blog’s influence, taking cre of your websites should be a priority.
If your website were to ever crash, you should quickly recover.
And only your backups will help.
In this article, we will talk about backups, why you should keep one and how to create daily backups for your websites.
What is a backup?
A backup is a copy of your website. If your website is hacked (or crashes) you can restore it immediately with a copy.
It is like keeping your important documents in google drive or dropbox and restoring them when you need them.
Why is a backup important?
Keeping a backup is like wearing a parachute while skydiving. It’s fun when you start.
Until you crash.
Similarly, if you are making a website then you may enjoy the whole process of building a WordPress site and engaging an audience. But if it crashes there is no way to revive your website without a backup.
So it can be fun when you have a website that engages users. But if it crashes and you don’t have a backup, you’ll be losing users quickly.
What does a backup consist of?
A backup consists of the copies of everything that you have ever included on your website. This includes WordPress themes that you have used, the data you have on your websites, and also the plugins that you are using.
But creating a backup does that you can ignore other aspects of website security. Check out our other article that consists of Top WordPress vulnerabilities and their solutions.
How to create a backup for a WordPress website?
There are many ways to backup your sites. They can be classified into two topics. One is “Back-up with Plugins” and another is “Back-up without plugins”.
There are two main ways to backup your sites. One is to install a plugin on your website. The second way is without plugins: an automated or manual backup.
Backup with Plugins
In WordPress, there are many plugins available to choose from. And these plugins are available for almost anything. Of course, plugins are available for backups too. There are around 900 plugins available for backup services on wordpress.org right now. So to select an appropriate plugin you have to keep a few things in mind.
- The method of backup that is being used
- The location of the backup
- Is scheduled backup possible or not?
- Is the plugin doing a complete backup or is it doing a database backup only?
The plugin must be selected carefully because, in case of any problem with your WordPress website, you are going to rely on the backup only. Also among these backup plugins, some are free and some cost money.
Drawbacks of using plugins for backup
Although using plugins can help you to automate the process of backing-up regularly using features like scheduled backups but they also have some drawbacks that cannot be ignored.
Plugins are great and can help alleviate your website but if you use too many they can have an impact on your website. They can drag your website down by putting too much wait on it. So you should be mindful when considering the plugins that you are using and avoid them if you can.
Now regarding plugins for backups, well for a fact a back up must be maintained at the server level, not at the site level. The majority of the plugins that you use for backup do it at a site level. But what does this mean? Basically, at a site level, only the files of your WordPress sites are backed up while at a server level you back up the entire system with all specifications. Also, server-level backups are faster when restoring.
Backups without plugins
We have seen the pros and cons of backing up with plugins so now let us move on to the other method of having a backup. First, you must know that backups of two types and you have to do them both. Backup of database and site files.
Your WordPress site files include many different types of files and while doing a manual update you must not forget about any of these files. Because if you do then your website may look and function the same after the restoration from a backup but there will be something missing and finding that part will be a headache.
So these files include:
- WordPress Plugins
- WordPress Themes
- Images and files
- WordPress Core Installations
- PHP and other code files
- Any other files that you might have added
Buy your website is not build with just the above-listed files. There is also a database that has basically all the data on your website. This data consists of blog posts, comments, user information, tags, etc.
So let us dive into methods that can be used to back up your websites.
WordPress backup through your hosting
This is one simple approach to have a backup. Choose a web hosting service that can provide you regularly back up. There are many website hosting services out there that can offer you this. They backup your site files as well as your site’s database. Some of them even provided add-ons that can be purchased for a few more bucks. These add-ons can provide you with more options.
One thing that you must consider is that if your backup is being done on the same server or not. Because if the server is getting hacked then along with your main website you will lose your back up too.
Manual backup through your hosting
The automatic updates that your hosting service provider can be good if you have chosen a good service provider. But to be more sure you can have an offline backup too. to do this you just have to download the WordPress Directory on your hard disk.
This can be done in two different ways. Either via cPanel or using SFTP/FTP.
Using cPanel is so easy to backup your site. You just have to follow the steps below and voila! you are good to go.
- Login to the web host and go to cPanel.
- go to file manager and there you can find your home directory i.e. public_html.
- now find your WordPress directory and compress it.
- Then just click on the archive and download this compressed folder.
Do this regularly and you can even have a track of your updates and backups. You can keep this file in your PC’s hard disk and external hard disk. Also, you can upload it on cloud services like google drive and dropbox to make sure you have your website safe.
Using Tools like FileZilla you can download your files and keep a backup with you all the time. First, install the FileZilla application on your PC and link it with your website using SFTP credentials. You can get these credentials from your web hosting account. Log in using your site’s info and choose 2222 as your port number.
If you have logged in successfully then you will be able to see all your WordPress files. Select all and download them. With this, you have done a backup for your site files but what about the database?
It is simple too, just log in to your phpMyAdmin. Select the Database tab from the administration panel. Here you will be able to see all your tables. Select all the tables and click on export. Set the format as SQL and click on go. Keep in mind to save both your site files and database at the same location.
That’s it you have done a complete backup of your website manually.
Manual backups take time. A lot of time.
As you grow your website and increase traffic, you’ll be working with more databses and site files. You’ll also be making real-time changes to your websites.
Not only do you have to keep track of databases and real-time changes, you’ll have to automate the entire process to save time.
WP Uber backups all your sites for you. It creates copies of your site on three different servers. Your backups are always accessible and can be restored in a click.