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Backup, Restore, Clone and Migrate with BackupBuddy – Part 4 – Configure Automatic Backups

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Now that we’ve got destinations done, we need to configure an automatic backup.

Create Set of Schedules

Let’s come back over to our site to backups and come down to scheduling and we’re going to create a set of schedules here.

How Often Should You Backup?

People routinely ask me how often should they back up. My recommendation is for the standard typical website, one that does not have a lot of active blog activity and doesn’t have any ecommerce stuff on it, that you do a full backup once per month and a database backup once per week. And then sort of your routine manual backups before you update something significant. But in terms of automatic backups, a full backup once per month and a database backup once per week.

Now if you’ve got an ecommerce site or a membership site or a site that has high blog activity then I recommend that you do a full backup once per week and you do a database backup once a day. That’s going to mean that you lose, at most, 24 hours worth of data.

If you are in a situation like me and you cannot afford to lose 24 hours of data, in fact, even if you lose an hour of data, it could be a big problem… then you need to do your full backup once a week and a database backup every hour. That’s what I do on BYOB Website. I back my site up every single hour because people are purchasing, posting on the forums and commenting on posts. Staff are posting posts. There are so many changes that happen on my site every day, one way or another that it only makes sense for me to back the database up every single hour.

Difference Between a Full Backup and a Database Backup

Chyna asks, “What’s the difference between a full backup and a database backup?” Well, remember at the very beginning of this presentation, I said that WordPress stores it stuff in 2 places ? In the file system and in the database. A full backup includes a backup of all the files. A database backup includes a backup only of the database.

The database typically changes much more frequently than your files do. Anytime somebody posts a comment, it doesn’t change a file. It changes your database. Anytime you make a post, it doesn’t change the files. It changes your database.

Once you’ve got your file structure set up, it really only changes when you add a plugin or when you upgrade your site or when you add media to your media library, that kind of thing. So because it doesn’t change as often, it doesn’t need to be backed up as often. But you could just do full backups the whole time. That’s just going to take time and storage though that you probably don’t need to.

So for a typical website do a full backup once a month, database backup once a week. For an ecommerce membership site, high blog activity site, full backup once a week, database backup once per day and then for a very active ecommerce site, membership site, full backup once a week, database backup every hour. That’s a schedule I recommend.

Schedule For a Typical Website

We’re going to do the first one, a typical website and the schedule name here is going to be monthly full backup. It’s going to be a full backup, it’s monthly. We’re going to start it tomorrow at 1 am. And then I’m going to pick a remote destination and I’ll just send it to Stash. I’m going to delete the local backup file after the remote file sends a success and this should be checked if you want this to actually work and we’re going to add a new schedule.

We’ve got our monthly full backup. Now we’re going to have our weekly database backup and in that case, we pick the database only. We’ll pick weekly and the time of the next run will be the 17th at 12 am. We’ll pick Stash again. We’ll delete that local backup and enable the schedule the run, add a new schedule.

And now, at the end of 6 months, I’ll have 26 backups which will include 6 full monthly backups and the 20 weekly database backups. And at that point, you will just keep on deleting the older ones and copying the new ones. And I never have to do this again.

Cynthia asks, “Why delete the local backup after the remote send is successful?” Well, I would delete it because I don’t want to store it on my server. I don’t want to load up my server with that information. I don’t want to slow my site down, to take the resources. That’s why I would remove it.

You would choose not to remove it if you didn’t trust the system. But I trust the system so I’m not too worried about it. But it is always theoretically possible that the backup that you hoped worked failed and when you rely on it, it’s not there. And so all of a sudden now, you wish you’d kept a local one. But that’s why.

Okay so that’s how to set up an automatic backup system.

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