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Doing a back up of your WordPress website today is a must if you are a website or blog owner. Without a backup, you run the risk of losing a lot in most cases, your lifetime’s hard work and money spent. There are so many reasons why you would want to create a back up of your website on a daily or weekly basis? Since WordPress is the most popular CMS platform on the planet to build websites, it has now become the highest targeted platform for hackers to do malicious harm or serious damage to one’s website.
These are instances when you should always be making a back up of your website on a regular basis, when:
- updating to the latest version of WordPress;
- updating plugins or themes;
- installing new plugins or themes;
- making changes to files in the public folder;
- publishing a new post or page.
Making these important updates or changes to your WordPress website, could have disastrous consequences for one’s website if one had no back up plan in place and something had to go wrong, for example, loss of data, slow website, content, and images are not in their right place, some parts of the front end or back end of your website is not functioning as normal, worst case scenario you get the white page “screen of death” or your website could be lost forever.
When I first started blogging and creating websites, I also risked it too many times, saying nothing will happen to my website or I was just being plain lazy at the time to make a backup. But once you start realizing the importance of backing up your website, you will make it a habit, which is a very good thing, believe me, as I paid the price too many times, for not making a back up of my website.
How Can I Backup my website for free?
If you have access to c-panel or Plesk panel, you can easily do a full or partial back up of your website there. If you have no access to this or you are not comfortable backing up your website there, then you can always make use of WordPress plugins, to back up your entire website on a daily or weekly basis.
Important Note: make sure you have extra copies of your website back up, just in case your computer, laptop or external storage disk is not working for some unknown reason, therefore always make sure you have a minimum of 3 back up copies of your entire website stored, for example, one on your computer, another using cloud storage like google drive and one to your external hard disk that is separate from your main computer.
Bonus Tip: whenever there is a WordPress core, theme or plugin update, its always best to wait a day or two or more, to see in the review comments and feedback sections, how many positive comments or feedback and five star ratings are there, as this will make you feel more confident before you decide to go ahead and finally update to the latest version of WordPress, theme or plugin.
Here are my Top 10 LifeSaver Backup Plugins For WordPress to make you feel confident about your website if something had to go wrong anytime.
1. All-in-One WP Migration
All-In-One WP Migration is a WordPress plugin that will export your whole website including your database, media files, plugins and themes with no technical skills required. To restore your website, all you have to do is import the backup file from your computer or cloud storage using All-in-One WP Migration. It is also now the most downloaded and highest rated plugin in the WordPress repository.
UpdraftPlus is a WordPress plugin that will back up all your WordPress files and database into the cloud (popular free cloud options to use is Google Drive and email) and you can restore it anytime with a single click. Another great feature of Updraft Plus is that you can schedule your backups, which means you will not need to worry if you forgot to make a backup of your WordPress website.
Duplicator is a WordPress Migration plugin that allows you to migrate, copy, move or clone a website from one location to another easily. You can also pull down a live site to localhost for further development, transfer a WordPress site from one host to another, manually back up your WordPress website or parts of your website, duplicate a live website to a staging area or vice versa, and bundle up an entire WordPress website for easy reuse or distribution.
4. Backup Buddy
Backup Buddy is a Premium WordPress plugin that was launched in 2010 and is a solid solution for backing up, cloning, restoring, migrating, staging, changing your domain name or URL and protecting your whole WordPress website including all your WordPress files and database with just a few clicks.
Other great features of Backup Buddy is having the ability to schedule automatic backups of your website, store all your backups off-site securely and safely in a location of your choice, restore your website fast and easily from a backup, receive instant email notifications, and also includes WordPress security and optimization for your site and much more.
5. Backup Guard
Backup Guard is a WordPress plugin that allows you to backup, restore and migrate your whole website easily. You can also choose how you want to backup and restore your website by selecting WordPress files only, database only or both.
Main free Backup Guard features include: download your backups to your computer, upload your backups to restore from your computer, option to upload to Dropbox, the ability to set up or schedule automatic website backups, WordPress Network is supported, and more.
Blogvault is a WordPress plugin that offers free cloud storage and a free staging environment for all your websites. It is, therefore, an excellent solution for developers who need all the tools to maintain and manage multiple websites with a white label solution for branding their businesses.
BlogVaults now powers big brand names like WPEngine, Pantheon, Flywheel, LiquidWeb, Cloudways, and many more. It also lays claim to backing up the largest website of 330GB.
BackWPup is a WordPress plugin that can be used to make a back up of your whole WordPress website and then can be stored to an external back up service like Dropbox, S3, RackSpaceCloud, FTP, and many more. From your single backup .zip file that one had stored away earlier, you can now easily restore that file to that particular date when your website was working best.
BackUpWordPress plugin is easy to use and works out of the box with no extra settings required by you and will back up your entire website including your database and all your WordPress files on a schedule that suits you.
BackUpWordPress main features: works in low memory, “shared host” environments, manage multiple backup schedules, option to have each backup file emailed to you, exclude files and folders from your backups and more.
WPBackItUp is a WordPress Plugin that protects your website against hackers, malware, host outages, and even your own mistakes. With WPBackItUp you can make a backup of every setting, post, comment, revision, plugin, theme, media file and upload with just a single click.
WPBackItUp was first introduced to the WordPress community in 2012 and has been available ever since and is now used to back up more than 30,000 websites every day.
VaultPress is a real-time backup WordPress plugin and a security scanning solution developed by Automattic, the company that now operates millions of websites on WordPress.com.
VaultPress is now powered by Jetpack and effortlessly backs up all your posts, comments, media files, revisions, and dashboard settings on your site to their servers. With VaultPress you’re always protected against hackers, malware, accidental damage, and host outages.
To conclude it is always best to have a look at the comments or feedback section and also the star ratings given by users for that particular plugin before deciding and choosing a backup plugin for your website, as this will always give you more insight and peace of mind when using that plugin for your website.
I personally like using All-in-One WP Migration to back up all my websites, because it is very fast and easy to use, the only downside with this plugin, is that if your website is more than 500mb, you will need to purchase their premium unlimited plugin extension, which then allows you to backup websites of any size. If you cannot afford the unlimited plugin extension, then UpdraftPlus is definitely a great alternative to go with, as they have no limits or restrictions on the size of your website backups.