We all know that having a backup of our website is important but that doesn’t mean we take the time to do the backup or put things in place to run the backup automatically. For some, daily life is busy and other things take priority. For others, and I suspect most, its intimidation. Common concerns from a beginner web admin might be “What do I use to run a backup?”; “Where does the backup go and how will I find it again?”; “Will I break my site?” Let’s take a look at how easy it really is to do a backup when you use a WordPress CMS.
Method 1- Use A Plugin
Doing a backup doesn’t get any easier than using a plugin and is ideal for the beginner web admin. Plugins are designed especially for everyday users which in turn makes creating and running a website much easier. No need to know any coding language, the plugin is pre-packaged code that magically jumps into place once installed.
There are many great plugins for backing up WordPress but the most versatile and highly rated BackWPUp is the one we will work with today. To begin, install it from your WP control panel in the plugins section or from the WP Plugin Directory. Once it’s installed, activate the plugin to begin scheduling a backup.
To use the plugin, locate it in your left sidebar as BackWPUp. Click it to open your tools, settings, and options along with a log displaying any current jobs.
Add A New Job
Whether you want to backup just your database, just your website files, or both, this plugin has great flexibility. You’ll first need to configure the settings of the WP site that you want to backup. Select Add New from the left sidebar under the BackWPUp tab to open a full page description of everything you currently have installed on WP. Select or deselect anything you want to add to or leave off of the restore.
The first thing you want to do is give the job a name. You’ll usually want to leave all of the default boxes checked and really only need to configure where you want the backup to go. You have a few options where to send your backup such as email, FTP, Dropbox, SugarSync, and Amazon S3 among others. If you don’t have one of those accounts, there are links right in the settings that allow you to quickly set up a free account. I’m going to use Dropbox so I’ll need to authenticate my account by clicking on the link and then allowing the Dropbox app access to my files.
Use the plugin to do automatic backups on your schedule and time intervals when it’s most convenient for you using the scheduling feature. In the right sidebar Job Schedule box, check the Activate Scheduling box. Next, choose if you want the backup to run hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly and what specific date, day, and time you want it to run.
The default settings for the backup file will put everything together for you in a zip file and will show you the file prefix so you know where to find it.
Enter or use the default email address in the send log to be notified of any errors during the backup.
When you’ve finished making your changes, save them in the Job Type box. Now, go to the left sidebar and click on the Job tab under the BackWPUp plugin. Your job should display all of your settings and you’ll want to run it now to make sure all settings are correct and the backup works as expected.
When you run a backup for the first time, you should go to the backup location to make sure the backup worked and all the settings are correct.
Method 2- Export Files To Desktop
Another way to backup your files is to use the built in Export tool in your WordPress Dashboard. This backs up your website files and stores them locally on your PC in a neat little package.
In your WordPress dashboard, click on the Tools tab then select Export. Next, you’ll want to decide if you want to backup just pages, just posts, or all site content. Once you make your selections, click the Download Export File.
When the file window opens, you’ll have the option to open it or save it to your PC.
That’s all there is to backing up your website! Take a few minutes to setup a backup or schedule one regularly so you’re always ready with a fresh copy should your site be hacked or you make some changes to the database that go very wrong! If you’re looking for a great web hosting company for your website, check out Cytanium discount hosting.