Imagine one day you wake up to find your WordPress site broken! It’s a horrifying situation that we wish no one ever has to go through.
Unfortunately, more often than not, website owners are faced with broken and defaced websites. In situations like this, a backup is extremely handy to restore your site to normal.
The best way to take a backup is by using a WordPress Backup Plugin. For example, our BlogVault backup plugin automates the process for you. Plus restoring your backup is easy and takes just a few minutes.
The alternative to a plugin is to manually backup your site using cPanel. However, manual backups are time-consuming and many times, the backup copy fails to restore. For these reasons, we don’t recommend backing up your site using cPanel.
That said, it’s good to learn how to take a backup on your own. It’s worth trying it out and learning how the process works. This will make you more familiar with the WordPress platform.
Having worked with WordPress backups for over a decade to perfect a trusted and reliable backup plugin, our team knows the subject inside and out. Here, we’ve detailed the instructions to back up your WordPress site using cPanel. We also show you how to restore your site using the same backup option.
If you’re looking for a reliable backup solution for your WordPress site, install our BlogVault Backup Plugin. It will automatically take a backup of your website and store it safely. To restore your WordPress backup, the process entails a few clicks and your site will be back to normal in a few minutes.
How to Backup Your WordPress Site Using cPanel
A WordPress site is made of files and a database. If you are carrying out a manual backup, make sure you backup both elements. We’ll show you how to backup your WordPress files first and then the database using cPanels backup tools.
I. How To Backup Your Files Using cPanel
This backup option allows you to take a backup on your own but it isn’t recommended. Some hosting plans include backups, but some charge a fee for this service.
The method to backing up your cPanel files will differ between hosting providers. However, the process is generally the same.
Step 1: Log in to your hosting account. Go to your Web Hosting and select cPanel. For example, in NameCheap, go to Account and then select the server icon under your domain name. This will open up a dropdown menu. Here, you can select Go to cPanel.
Step 2: Inside cPanel, find Backup Wizard.
Step 3: Select Backup, and follow the directions. You will need to select whether you want a full backup or partial backups.
Next, you have to enter your email address and click on Generate Backup. Your backup will begin and once complete, you will receive an email. This usually takes quite a while. Backups in cPanel can take a few hours depending on the size of your website and whether you’re using a shared server or a dedicated server.
II. How To Backup Your Database Using cPanel
If you want to download your WordPress database, you can follow these steps:
Step 1: Log in to your hosting account > cPanel > Backup Wizard.
Step 2: Select Backup and here, you need to choose My SQL Databases.
Step 3: Select which database you want to backup. By clicking on the backup name, a download will automatically begin.
Pro Tip: In case you aren’t sure which is your website’s database, you can check this in your wp-config file. Go to cPanel File Manager, and open the folder called public_html. Find your wp-config file and download it. You can open the file in any text editor like Notepad. Here, you can see your database details including the name.
How To Download Your Backup From cPanel
Once your WordPress backup is complete, you will receive an email from your hosting provider. You can then visit the WordPress Backup Wizard. Go to Backup and you will see that a backup is available.
By clicking on the backup link, a download will automatically begin. Once you’ve downloaded the backup, you can save this file safely in a designated folder.
Pro Tip: This backup folder contains sensitive data pertaining to your WordPress websites such as site configurations and login credentials. We strongly recommend encrypting this folder. This is because if a hacker manages to break into your computer, they can steal this file and misuse it. However, if the folder is encrypted, they won’t be able to decipher it. You can follow this article to encrypt and password-protect your folder.
How To Restore Your cPanel Backup
The purpose of a backup is to restore your website when things go wrong. If a backup doesn’t work or cannot be used to restore a WordPress website, then the entire process goes in vain. A restore basically allows you to use your WordPress backup to get your site back to its functioning state without having to recreate it from scratch.
The cPanel restoration process is quite easy and can be used in restoring the backups – files and databases. You can carry out a full site restore or partial restore of your WordPress site. However, it takes excruciatingly long.
Step 1: Log in to your WordPress hosting account > cPanel > Backup Wizard.
Step 2: Select Restore.
Step 3: To restore backups, select your restore type. This allows you to restore only your files or only your database.
- If you wish to restore your entire website, select Home Directory. You can also choose to restore the home directory backup or partial home directory backup.
- If you wish to restore only your database, select MySQL Databases.
Step 4: Choose your backup files from your computer or local machine and click Upload.
Once you’ve uploaded the backup, the process can take a few minutes to a few hours. This process overwrites the existing data with the data from your backup. In our experience, we’ve seen WordPress site owners facing problems with the MySQL database backup restoration process getting stuck or failing to upload.
Bonus Read: Restore WordPress Database Using phpMyAdmin
An alternate way of restoring the MySQL database in cPanel is through phpMyAdmin.
Step 1: Log into your WordPress hosting account. Go to cPanel home > Databases. Here you will see phpMyAdmin.
Step 2: Inside phpMyAdmin, a list of tables will populate.
Step 3: Choose the database you want to restore. You will see an import tab in the buttons on the top of the window. When you click on import, a new window will open.
Select Choose File and browse your computer for the file from which you want to import the database tables. Check all the other settings to ensure they are correct. You can then start importing by clicking Go.
This manual import is a time-consuming process. It can take a while before your WordPress MySQL database is restored.
You can avoid this hassle by using a much faster, easier, and more reliable way to take a backup – by using a WordPress Backup Plugin. Most plugins give you the option to selectively backup and restore your files and database separately. Plus, you get access to easy backup configuration and backup archives.
If you’re on an eCommerce hosting plan, cPanel backups are simply insufficient. You need real-time backups to copy every change made to your website including orders and customer details.
There are many plugins available in the market which makes it hard to choose the right one. Here’s our top pick of the best WordPress backup plugins to make it easier.
Learning how to backup your WordPress site on your own is an accomplishment that’s commendable. It’s good to understand the inner workings of how WordPress backups are taken. However, we don’t recommend relying on a cPanel backup and restore.
Most of the time, these backups take a long time to run. The backup process also puts a heavy load on your website’s resources. This will slow down your WordPress website and bring down its performance when the backup process is running.
When it comes to website backups, it’s best to opt for a professional backup solution like BlogVault. The plugin will take backups of your WordPress site regularly without putting any load on your site. The copies will be encrypted and stored safely, ready to be restored at any time.
The most important thing to consider when taking backups is to ensure the backup copy works. With BlogVault, you can test restore your backup to check if it works fine. The backups are guaranteed to work so you can run your WordPress site knowing you have a reliable safety net to fall back on.
Backup Your WordPress Website WIth BlogVault!