Backup Your WordPress site (required)
For as long as computers have existed, taking backups has been the obvious but often rather neglected discipline of users. And your WordPress church site is no different. You have spent hours setting up your site and even more hours posting regular content, so what would happen if tomorrow your site’s database evaporated?
You really must backup your WordPress site on a regular basis. Site’s can get hacked, you can make a mistake and delete stuff you shouldn’t or your host can make mistakes too! If you have a backup, you can be back on-line in minutes. But you knew all that, didn’t you?
It is easy enough to take backups manually, but backups only happen if they are automatic. Here are one or two plugins for WordPress that can do this for you.
What should you back up?
Whatever you use to backup, in order to restore your site you need:
- a backup of your MySql database
- a copy of your site’s files (everything in the wp-content folder, which includes all your themes, plugins and uploaded media).
- your wp-config.php file
Personally, I prefer to backup the entire site’s files including all WordPress core files (even though you could restore them from a fresh WordPress download).
Three Plugins to Try
There are quite a few plugins around that are for backing up WordPress. Please be aware that not all of them backup both files and database. Some we tried didn’t work at all on our server.
The following plugins we have tested on our setup, but you should test them on your site before relying on them.
Creates a backup of your database, current WP Core, all your Themes, Plugins and Uploads. The resulting single archive file is then uploaded to an FTP server that you configure. It can also be used to store the archive locally, but this is stored in wp-content, which is the worst place to keep a backup.
Keeping your backup on a different server adds an additional level of confidence in your backup. This plugin automatically backs up your sites files and database to a DropBox account.
This one is a lot more complicated to set-up but does a good job with more control and flexibility than the other two. XCloner is a Backup and Restore component designed for PHP/Mysql websites, and this plugin brings it to the WordPress world.
Whatever you use make sure you TEST, TEST, TEST.