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How to Backup a Website and Make Your Life Easier

by | January 30, 2018

Backups are like napkins – you never think of them until you need them.

That’s why it’s useful to remind ourselves every now and then to back up our websites. If something happened right now, could you restore your website to a relatively recent backup? If not, this article is for you.

Why do I need to backup my website?

If you can’t think of anything that can go wrong with your website, it only means you lack imagination. While I generally support your optimism, as they say, better safe than sorry.

One of the most common reasons to restore a website is making a mistake. You distract for a second, click the wrong button and delete an integral file. Where to now?

While most of the hosting providers do offer backups, they’re usually not regular unless you pay for the service. That’s why it’s best to bet on yourself and make sure you’ve taken care of it.

We at AwardSpace, however, offer free regular backups that allow you to restore your website to a reasonably recent backup in case of an accident. Our backup service runs each week and we keep backups from the last three weeks.

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How to backup a website?

Once you’ve figured out the importance of backups, there are a couple of ways to perform them successfully. Remember, regular backups ensure a safer environment while working on your website.

Backup Plugins

The easiest option for a backup of a WordPress website is automating it with a plugin. There are plenty of backup plugins and whichever you choose, you’ll still need to apply some manual work downloading the copy of the backup for extra security.

One of the plugins you can use for that is WP-DBManager. The script will automatically create a folder called backup-db in the wp-content folder if that folder is writable. You can set to backup as often as you want but I suggest it be at least once a week.

Manual Backups

Even though backing up your website manually might be time- consuming, its efficiency is guaranteed as you go through all of the steps yourself. So how to backup a website manually?

1. Download your web files. 

You can do this by using a free FTP application such as Filezilla. Once you’ve downloaded it, enter your control panel, go to FTP manager and check your FTP username and hostname (the password is the same as your account’s unless you’ve changed it).

Once you’ve connected to your host on Filezilla, choose the location of your WordPress files on your host and the local directory where you want to store your backup. Drag or copy the files to transfer them to your computer. That’s it!

2. Download your database file. 

The next step in the process is exporting your MySQL database. To backup your website’s database you need to enter the phpMyAdmin.

Go to MySQL Databases and create a new base. You’ll use these credentials to access your data from the phpMyAdmin.

Login to phpMyAdmin and choose the database you want to backup. Click Go and the database will download on your local computer.

3. Export your WordPress XML file.

Finally, the last backup you can make is the XML file from your WordPress Dashboard. Go to Tools and click Export. Download the full file which contains all of your pages and posts.

Oops! The Unthinkable!

Let’s assume the worst possible scenario happens and you break your website.Now that you have a backup, however, you can restore it to its most recent version and not lose anything.

Your files are completely protected and secure just by practicing the three steps above on a regular basis.

We at AwardSpace offer WordPress hosting including free regular backups that allow you to restore your website to a recent backup in case of an accident. Our service runs each week and we keep backups from the past three weeks.

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