Easily Backup and Move Your Site

Last Update: February 06, 2018

Backing up your work is a must, and it's something that can be done in a matter of minutes. And moving your site may become a necessity as you grow your business. Below are a few steps you can take to protect your business. If you're not willing to look out for yourself today, don't look to blame someone else tomorrow.

First of all, I've stressed in other posts and comments how vitally important it is to use plugins that are updated regularly and tested with the current version of WordPress, which is 4.9.3 at this writing (*Updated 2/6/18*). If you are using a plugin that is not updated, you are asking for trouble.

I know that some people here have advocated using WP Clone. But that plugin has not been updated in more than a year and, as such, is an ugly old dog that I would not pet. I have recently needed to migrate sites to another hosting company, and I've used a plugin to perform backups and successfully move the sites.

All-in-One WP Migration is authored by ServMask and offers 1-click functionality to backup, export and import site files. You can check it out at the WP Repository at https://wordpress.org/plugins/...

Backup your site at the touch of a button. You can see in this image below that all you have to do is click the Backup button in the WP Dashboard. Then select Create Backup and Save the File to your computer.

It's a similar process for moving, or migrating a site. You can see in this image below that all you have to do is click the Export button. Then select Export to File and Save the File to your computer.

If you're moving the site to a new hosting company, as I recently did, you'll need to go to the current domain registrar and change the DNS. For the past 12+ years, I've purchased all of my domains from NameCheap because I can host the sites wherever I want. I pay $12 per year to renew my sites there as well. So, like Flavor Flav said back in his Public Enemy days, don't believe the hype. :-)

So I went to NameCheap, changed the DNS, and then logged into my new hosting provider. I added the domain name - in this case it's Surfside Sandbox - and then I installed WordPress. It usually takes a couple of hours for the DNS to change, so I went out to lunch with my dad.

When I got back, I logged into my new WP Dashboard and installed and activated the All-in-One WP Migration plugin. You can see in this image below that all you have to do is click the Import button.

This plugin is especially sweet because of the 1-click and Drag and Drop features. You can see in the image below that while the Import window was open, all I needed to do was locate the folder where I placed the Backup/Migrate file. And then I just dragged it into the Import box.

Within minutes, my new site was up and running, and looked exactly like my original. Of course, you'll want to make sure that your plugins and permalinks are updated, and take a walk through of everything, but you'll find this method to be very simple and secure in backing up and moving your sites. Peace friends! :-)

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DynamicDavid Premium
Awesome article Bob. I just backed up my site using this tool, direct to my pc.
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jvranjes Premium
I do not understand the first step in 'create backup'. There is 'add' button, so what am I supposed to add?

Tried Export, this creates wpress-extension file, so I just save it to file for migration?

What did you choose as a new host?
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DynamicDavid Premium
Install the plugin (All In One WP Migration)
Activate the plugin
WP Dashboard -> Select All-In-One Migration
Select Backups (It puts backups in here - so after you do one, and download it to your pc, if you go back here, you also see that backup here)
Click on "Create Backup"
The "Export Site" option is displayed
(There is a find and replace function here - that replaces text if you wish to do it here within the database)
(I did not want to use this option, so I did not, but you might)
Click on "Export To"
Click on advanced options and choose accordingly
I selected File
It reported progress as it was doing it, then a download button was displayed (flashes and changes size)
Click download button
Saved the file to my pc, the name of the file is the domain name along with the date and time.
That is the backup done.

A new host would be the name of your new hosting company.

I am just creating the backup in case I need it.
WP Dashboard -> Select All-In-One Migration
Select Backups (The backup just done is displayed in a list and you have some options).

I would suggest that you do keep a few backups, and delete the older ones as time goes by. It is up to you to determine how many you want to keep.
You might do a daily backup to your PC, and keep the last 7 within WP, and keep the last 14 on your pc. Up to you to decide how many to keep. However do some sort of housekeeping otherwise you run out of disk space...

Because I like to keep the number of plugins active to the bare minimum, I deactivate the plugin after doing the backup.
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davehayes Premium
Now I like this post and agree with the part about domain names, I too use Namecheap and they are good, a worthwhile recommendation for sure
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jetrbby80316 Premium
I tried backing up using All in One WP Migration, followed all your steps here, got to Export > File, and this is the message I received in the Screenshot.

Out of Disk Space. But I don't quite understand why, there is over 683 GB of available free space available on my OS (C Drive) - the total size of all the files of the website is only 357 MB.
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DynamicDavid Premium
Your screenshot suggests that the out of disk space is at the WA end. Contact WA Support.
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jetrbby80316 Premium
Thanks Dave, did not realize this. I will do.
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jetrbby80316 Premium
Bob the King! Thanks for endorsing this All-in-One Migration plug-in. Blue Host also recommended it, but I wanted to get some feedback from a trusted source - and now I have!

Definite;y going to use this great plugin moving forward - and ditch WP Clone. Thanks so much bro!
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jetrbby80316 Premium
Love it - WP Clone "...an ugly old dog I would not pet"!
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ColleenLVSJC Premium
Thanks, Bob! I'll add this to my Dashboard asap. I appreciate your valuable and easy to implement posts. :) Enjoy your day!
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SurfsideBob Premium
My pleasure, have a great day Colleen! :-)
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Kelanders Premium
Thanks for this - after installing and activating this plugin, I went to backups, create backup and it bumped me to exports without giving me an option to save it to my desktop. Any ideas on what's going wrong?
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SurfsideBob Premium
Nothing is wrong, it's just prompting you to select how you want to save the file. See in the 3rd image where it says Export File? I click the Advanced Options drop down and then selected Export to File. It will then run the backup and you can download it to your hard drive. That's the method I always use. Need to run out for a bit but will be back later to answer questions if you have any, or you can PM me. Hope this helps! :-)
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JeffL61 Premium
Thank you for sharing this much needed info, Bob! I personally will immediate act in installing the plug-in that you recommended but also delete that WP Clone plug-in.
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SurfsideBob Premium
That's wisdom bro, because WP Clone absolutely sucks. lol
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skmorrow Premium
Thank you for sharing this. I wish you the best!
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SurfsideBob Premium
Thanks Steve! :-)
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GailLowe Premium
Thanks Bob. Will look into this. Hope you are well. Gail
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SurfsideBob Premium
My pleasure Gail, hope you are well too. I used this tool to move all 12 of my sites to another hosting company after they continually crashed here. Today is my last day at WA. Wishing you peace and blessings. :-)
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GailLowe Premium
Thanks Bob. Very sorry to see you go but glad that we got to say 'au revoir'. All the best to you and hope you get all you want out of life. :) Gail
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PatsyC Premium
Hi Bob, thanks for this.

Due to recent experiences with the WPClone Plugin that broke my permalinks! among other things. I delete it of course, and all the backup files I saved on my laptop.

I wish I knew that this plugin existed for the backup files part. I thought it was only to migrate a website.

I'm emailing this post to myself so I can have it and will add this plugin, and back up my website. Actually, I have a blog post I wrote a while back here I need to delete since it's about backing up our websites and I mentioned the nasty WPClone in it.

Thanks for caring and sharing this! I appreciate it.

Update.
That didn't take long!
Now that I have it downloaded, can I 'deactivate' it since it's not needed?

Thanks :)
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SurfsideBob Premium
You're very welcome Patsy. And yes, you may deactivate it and activate it again when you want to run a backup. It is really a very stable and easy-to-use resource. Peace my friend! :-)
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PatsyC Premium
Thank you very much! :D
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SurfsideBob Premium
Do I know you? blahahahaha I crack me up. It's nearly 70 degrees here, I'm hitting the beach for an hour. Sorry, not trying to be mean. Peace my friend! :-)
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PatsyC Premium
Get out!!!

It's minus 20 something here.

Have fun :D
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beachwood Premium
Good stuff Bob! So moving sites this way with this plugin requires no FTP/Filezilla software? It sure looks that way. If not this is very cool!
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SurfsideBob Premium
Nope, no FTP and/or Filezilla, of which I am comfortable with and utilize as well. This is simple and effective to use. Go ahead and ask why I migrated 12 sites away from WA hosting. ;-)
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edensbox Premium
This is awesome information and I hope a lot of people read it. Most people do not think about backing up their site. I do a daily backup just in case something goes weird while I am working in it. At min.. I loose what I have done that day
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SurfsideBob Premium
Most people here don't think about a lot of things because Kyle and Carson give them a false sense of security and knowledge, laughing to the bank along the way. True story. :-)
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