Yesterday I was sending some links to websites I have designed to a potential client and found out that one of my website databases was corrupt. It was so bad that the site wouldn’t even load. I started to panic when I realized I didn’t have a recent backup of this site. In fact, this site hasn’t been backed up since last April and I have a ton of new information posted on it that I didn’t want to have to recreate. There are multiple MySql databases on this site and I didn’t want to overwrite every one when there is only a problem with one of them. In the end I was able to enlist the help of my web hosting company and they fixed the one database with my old backup which didn’t affect the rest of the site.
Having gone through all of this it reminded me that it is just as important to backup your websites as it is to backup your computer. If my website hosting company had a disaster there is a possibility that I wouldn’t be able to recover my site. I am now adding monthly backup routine for all of my websites so I don’t have to worry about data loss.
If you have cpanel access to your website, backups are a breeze. Just go into your cpanel and look for either Backup or Backup Wizard and follow the instructions. You can do two different types of backups. One is just the databases and the other is your entire site. There is a great article with instructions and pictures that explains the backups in greater detail at themelab.com
After my little event yesterday I decided that it is important to do both the full site backup as well as backing up each individual database into it’s own file. I don’t mind asking my web host to reload my backup but if I had backed up my databases individually it would have made my downtime much less.
Your Daily 15 - Go to your cpanel and make a backup of your website. Download the backup to your computer then burn it onto a disk and file it somewhere safe so that no matter what happens you will be prepared. Add this task to your calendar and backup your sites monthly so that there is no chance to loose all of your hard work.