What would happen if all of the hard work you put into your website was all wiped away by a hacker or malicious virus of some kind? It would be difficult to find the motivation to start all over unless you have a backup of some kind. Using your already established Dropbox account, several options are available to Backup WordPress Sites to Dropbox.
To take out some of the work out of backing up your site, below we will show some ways to automate the process and save the backup to Dropbox. The easier and more hands off the process is, the better, right? Below are some WordPress plugins and other options to help you easily backup your WordPress site.
Note: Depending on the size of your site and how much you use your Dropbox account, opening a dedicated Dropbox account for these backups might be a good idea.
1. WordPress Backup to Dropbox
WordPress Backup to Dropbox saves you the hassle of using your FTP client and making a total backup of your WordPress site. The first backup will take some time to complete because everything is being backed up: files, media, and database are all included. WordPress Backup to Dropbox creates a folder in Dropbox. This folder is the only folder this plugin can access.
After the initial full backup, each backup from then on will be an incremental backup. The incremental backups can be scheduled as frequently as daily. The scheduled backups can exclude different file types if desired.
BackWPup offers a few features beyond backing up WordPress files. Being a Dropbox user is not required to use BackWPup, other services such as Amazon S3, SugarSync and RackSpaceCloud are also supported.
Exporting the WordPress XML file, Checking, repairing and optimizing the Database are not common features among WordPress backup plugins. Choosing the backup file type (zip, tar, tar.gz, tar.bz2 format) is a nice touch too.
Cloudsafe365 is more than just a WordPress backup solution. The backup portion allows for backing up to local servers and Dropbox. The backups will consist of your WordPress Database, Plugins, Current Theme and your Files and Images.
Additionally, Cloudsafe365 offers protection against hacking and Malware. The ability for automated mining and info scraping is removed and your content and images are protected (in plus version). People won’t even be able to right-click on your images to download them. They will need to share your whole post or page, not just the image. The plus version is $15 a month.
4. WordPress SQL Backup
WordPress SQL Backup is not an automated backup. However, the backup is easily created right from your WordPress Dashboard. The backup file is the files in your /wp-content/ folder. The .tar or .gzip files can be downloaded or saved right to your Dropbox account.
ManageWP is a full-fledged tool for managing one or multiple WordPress sites. The cost of the service (starting at $6.30 per month) is minimal for the amount of awesome you get. The Standard Package offers security, on click updates of WordPress, Themes and Plugins. Managing all of your sites from one dashboard makes backing them up super easy. Create a backup task, choose the sites to back up and the output destination such as Dropbox. Restoring from a backup is also just as easy.
6. XM Backup
XM Backup is a simple choice to back up and save the files in the /wp-content/uploads folder and the WordPress Database. These are the bulk of the files, including your images and theme .zip, you’ll need if something catastrophic happens. When a backup is created using XM Backup, you can choose the destination of a Dropbox account, Email (of smaller files) or FTP.
Creating a WordPress Backup
To eliminate any doubt as to the difficulty of creating a backup, below is walk-through of the WordPress Backup to Dropbox plugin. Only a few steps are needed to create an initial backup and to schedule future backups. I’ll assume you already have a Dropbox account and the WordPress Backup to Dropbox plugin installed to your WordPress site.
In the left sidebar in your WordPress Dashboard, mouse over or click on the WPB2D tab to show the 3 options. Choose Backup settings
The first step is to link your Dropbox account to the plugin. Near the top left of the window, click the button to link the two.
You will be taken to the Dropbox site.
Enter in your Dropbox login credentials and authorize WordPress Backup to Dropbox. You should be taken back to your WordPress site when access is granted.
You will see when the next backup is scheduled (which there shouldn’t be anything scheduled), the backup history and settings. If you are using this plugin on several sites and backing up all of the sites to the same Dropbox account, you should check the box and use the subfolder option.
Next you can set the day and time to schedule the future backups. Remember, after the initial backup, only new and changed files are saved. This means choosing the daily backup isn’t all that bad of a choice.
The last part of the setup is choosing any folders to exclude from the backup. It may take a minute for all of the folders to display here so don’t get antsy right away of you don’t see what you’re looking for.
Once everything is set up and scheduled, it’s time to create the initial backup. Go to the left sidebar again and click on Backup Now. Click on the Start Backup button.
Give it a little time and check your Dropbox folder to make sure everything is there. Remember, the initial backup will likely be large and take some time to create.
While these are plugins are built with the purpose of backing up multiple aspects of your WordPress site, if the site has a really large database using the plugin will use considerable system resources. Keep an eye on your site to see if you notice any slowing down or even a crash. This will let you know you might want to look at a more robust server. Every bit of automation helps. The more you can automate the tasks you hate to do, the more money making work you will be able to do.
How have you been backing up your WordPress site?
Trevor is a freelance writer covering topics ranging from the Android OS to free web and desktop applications. When he is not writing about mobile productivity, he is a mobile productivity trainer for the busiest of all mobile users, working women.