Backing Up Your WordPress Site


Backing up your blog is extremely important and should be done regularly. As the owner of a self-hosted WordPress blog, you are responsible for your own data. If there is a catastrophic failure in your server, or you make a serious mistake, you could lose everything if you don’t keep regular backups. Thankfully, backing up a blog is not very hard, it just takes a few minutes of simple work.

WordPress blogs consist of two parts: files and a database. Both must be backed up to have a complete backup from which to restore if something goes wrong.
To learn about restoring a database backup, see here.

The following support instructions involve the use of an FTP program. If you're not sure what an FTP program is, or how to use it, visit this tutorial before proceeding.

Video Overview of Backing Up Site:

Text Instructions for Backing Up Site:

Step 1a: Make a copy of your blog files:

Use an FTP program to navigate to your blog’s installation folder. If your blog is something like “www.mywebsite.com/blog” then that would be a folder called “blog”. If your blog is your whole website, like “www.myphotoblog.com” then your installation folder would be your web root folder, usually called “public_html”, “httpdocs”, or “www”. Look inside possible folders for a group of files, many of which begin with “wp-“. If you can, do a search.

Once you’ve navigated to your blog’s installation folder, download just the “wp-content” folder to your computer. (All of the other files/folders can be ignored.)  This will take a long time, maybe an hour or more, so get this started and then go get a cup of coffee from Starbucks or do something else :)

Step 1b: Install Database Backup Plugin

After you’ve got your blog files downloaded, the next step is to backup your blog’s database. The easiest way to get a backup of your database is to use a plugin called “WordPress Database Backup“.

To install the “WP-DB-Backup” by Austin Matzko plugin to backup up your database, follow these simple steps:

Install from the Add Plugins area

First, go to “Plugins > Add New” in the left sidebar of your main WordPress admin area. Then, in the search bar, type in “WP-DB-Backup” and press return to search. (if you do not see the plugin by Austin Matzko, follow the steps below)

plugin-search-backup

The correct plugin should be right at the top – make sure it is created by Austin Matzko and click the install now button.

plugin-wp-db-backup

NOTE: If your screen tells you that it is already installed, be sure that the plugin is activated in your “Plugins > Installed Plugins” screen in WordPress.

Confirm the plugin installation when you see a popup, and after installation is complete click the Activate Plugin link.

 

plugin-activate-link

Once the plugin is active, you’ll need to configure the plugin, so click on “Tools > Backup” in WordPress.

tools-backupThere you will find options to create immediate or automated backups. We suggest enabling a Scheduled Backup so that you receive regular emails with your database zip file backup attached for safe keeping.

If you’re trying to follow these directions and it’s not working — maybe it can’t download the zip, or is asking for your host, username, and password — then you can always install it manually. Just download the plugin from the author’s website and then click on the button below for instructions on how to manually install the plugin instead.

 

Step 1c: Backup your Database

Now that you’ve got the database backup plugin installed and activated, to make a backup, go to “Tools” => “Backup” in your WordPress admin area.

tools-backup

and click to exclude spam comments and post revisions (this keeps your backup file size down)

exclude-spam-revisions

Then, a little further down, choose “download to my computer” and then click “backup now!”.

backup-and-download

You will be prompted to download a file with a funny name. Download it and put it in a safe place, hopefully you aren’t going to need it. :) This is your actual backup file. If the backup is complete and you’ve downloaded this file to your computer, then your database is backed up.

save-file

To set up an automated, regular, scheduled backup of your blog’s database, just go to the plugin’s admin page (“Tools” => “Backup”) and enter your Email address and pick a scheduling interval.

schedule-backup


Backing up your blog is extremely important and should be done regularly. As the owner of a self-hosted WordPress blog, you are responsible for your own data. If there is a catastrophic failure in your server, or you make a serious mistake, you could lose everything if you don’t keep regular backups. Thankfully, backing up a blog is not very hard, it just takes a few minutes of simple work.

WordPress blogs consist of two parts: files and a database. BOTH must be backed up and saved to have a complete backup from which to restore if something goes wrong.
To learn about restoring a database backup, see here.

The following support instructions involve the use of an FTP program. If you're not sure what an FTP program is, or how to use it, visit this tutorial before proceeding.

Video Overview of Backing Up Site:

Text Instructions for Backing Up Site:

Step 1a: Make a copy of your blog files:

Use an FTP program to navigate to your blog’s installation folder. If your blog is something like “www.mywebsite.com/blog” then that would be a folder called “blog”. If your blog is your whole website, like “www.myphotoblog.com” then your installation folder would be your web root folder, usually called “public_html”, “httpdocs”, or “www”. Look inside possible folders for a group of files, many of which begin with “wp-“. If you can, do a search.

Once you’ve navigated to your blog’s installation folder, download just the “wp-content” folder to your computer. (All of the other files/folders can be ignored.)  This will take a long time, maybe an hour or more, so get this started and then go get a cup of coffee from Starbucks or do something else :)

Step 1b: Install Database Backup Plugin

After you’ve got your blog files downloaded, the next step is to backup your blog’s database. The easiest way to get a backup of your database is to use a plugin called “WP Database Backup”.

To install the “WP-DB-Backup” by Austin Matzko plugin to backup up your database, follow these simple steps:

Install from the Add Plugins area

First, go to “Plugins > Add New” in the left sidebar of your main WordPress admin area. Then, in the search bar, type in “WP-DB-Backup” and press return to search. (if you do not see the plugin by Austin Matzko, follow the steps below)

plugin-search-backup

The correct plugin should be right at the top – make sure it is created by Austin Matzko and click the install now button.

plugin-wp-db-backup

NOTE: If your screen tells you that it is already installed, be sure that the plugin is activated in your “Plugins > Installed Plugins” screen in WordPress.

Confirm the plugin installation when you see a popup, and after installation is complete click the Activate Plugin link.

 

plugin-activate-link

Once the plugin is active, you’ll need to configure the plugin, so click on “Tools > Backup” in WordPress.

tools-backupThere you will find options to create immediate or automated backups. We suggest enabling a Scheduled Backup so that you receive regular emails with your database zip file backup attached for safe keeping.

If you’re trying to follow these directions and it’s not working — maybe it can’t download the zip, or is asking for your host, username, and password — then you can always install it manually. Just download the plugin from the author’s website and then click on the button below for instructions on how to manually install the plugin instead.

 

Step 1c: Backup your Database

Now that you’ve got the database backup plugin installed and activated, to make a backup, go to “Tools” => “Backup” in your WordPress admin area.

tools-backup

and click to exclude spam comments and post revisions (this keeps your backup file size down)

exclude-spam-revisions

Then, a little further down, choose “download to my computer” and then click “backup now!”.

backup-and-download

You will be prompted to download a file with a funny name. Download it and put it in a safe place, hopefully you aren’t going to need it. :) This is your actual backup file. If the backup is complete and you’ve downloaded this file to your computer, then your database is backed up.

save-file

To set up an automated, regular, scheduled backup of your blog’s database, just go to the plugin’s admin page (“Tools” => “Backup”) and enter your Email address and pick a scheduling interval.

schedule-backup

Backing up your blog is extremely important and should be done regularly. As the owner of a self-hosted WordPress blog, you are responsible for your own data. If there is a catastrophic failure in your server, or you make a serious mistake, you could lose everything if you don’t keep regular backups. Thankfully, backing up a blog is not very hard, it just takes a few minutes of simple work. Here’s what to do:

WordPress blogs consist of two parts: files and a database. BOTH must be backed up and saved to have a complete backup from which to restore if something goes wrong.
To learn about restoring a database backup, see here.

The following support instructions involve the use of an FTP program. If you're not sure what an FTP program is, or how to use it, visit this tutorial before proceeding.

Step 1a: Make a copy of your blog files:

Use an FTP program to navigate to your blog’s installation folder. If your blog is something like “www.mywebsite.com/blog” then that would be a folder called “blog”. If your blog is your whole website, like “www.myphotoblog.com” then your installation folder would be your web root folder, usually called “public_html”, “httpdocs”, or “www”. Look inside possible folders for a group of files, many of which begin with “wp-“. If you can, do a search.

Once you’ve navigated to your blog’s installation folder, download just the “wp-content” folder to your computer. (All of the other files/folders can be ignored.)  This will take a long time, maybe an hour or more, so get this started and then go get a cup of coffee from Starbucks or do something else :)

Step 1b: Install Database Backup Plugin

After you’ve got your blog files downloaded, the next step is to backup your blog’s database. The easiest way to get a backup of your database is to use a plugin called “WP Database Backup”.

To install the “WP-DB-Backup” by Austin Matzko plugin to backup up your database, follow these simple steps:

Install from the Add Plugins area

First, go to “Plugins > Add New” in the left sidebar of your main WordPress admin area. Then, in the search bar, type in “WP-DB-Backup” and press return to search. (if you do not see the plugin by Austin Matzko, follow the steps below)

plugin-search-backup

The correct plugin should be right at the top – make sure it is created by Austin Matzko and click the install now button.

plugin-wp-db-backup

NOTE: If your screen tells you that it is already installed, be sure that the plugin is activated in your “Plugins > Installed Plugins” screen in WordPress.

Confirm the plugin installation when you see a popup, and after installation is complete click the Activate Plugin link.

 

plugin-activate-link

Once the plugin is active, you’ll need to configure the plugin, so click on “Tools > Backup” in WordPress.

tools-backupThere you will find options to create immediate or automated backups. We suggest enabling a Scheduled Backup so that you receive regular emails with your database zip file backup attached for safe keeping.

If you’re trying to follow these directions and it’s not working — maybe it can’t download the zip, or is asking for your host, username, and password — then you can always install it manually. Just download the plugin from the author’s website and then click on the button below for instructions on how to manually install the plugin instead.

 

Step 1c: Backup your Database

Now that you’ve got the database backup plugin installed and activated, to make a backup, go to “Tools” => “Backup” in your WordPress admin area.

tools-backup

and click to exclude spam comments and post revisions (this keeps your backup file size down)

exclude-spam-revisions

Then, a little further down, choose “download to my computer” and then click “backup now!”.

backup-and-download

You will be prompted to download a file with a funny name. Download it and put it in a safe place, hopefully you aren’t going to need it. :) This is your actual backup file. If the backup is complete and you’ve downloaded this file to your computer, then your database is backed up.

save-file

To set up an automated, regular, scheduled backup of your blog’s database, just go to the plugin’s admin page (“Tools” => “Backup”) and enter your Email address and pick a scheduling interval.

schedule-backup

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