"Some Wealthy Affiliate hosting servers DO NOT allow plugins to make outbound requests, if you site is on one of these servers you're going to get errors"

Step By Step Video & Instructional Tutorial

This tutorial is going to cover how to backup wordpress to Dropbox. I'm going to show you how to have your site scheduled to be sent to a free dropbox account every day/week or month.

It’s very straight forward and after you watch the How To video tutorial you'll be able to complete this process in a few minutes. However to follow along you’re going to need a free Dropbox.com account and a selfhosted wordpress site as we need to install a plugin called BackWpUp.

If your site is hosted here on Wealthy Affiliate hosting or perhaps Hostgator or BlueHost etc you'll have no problems creating backups of your site, but if you use Godaddy hosting this isn't going to work because Godaddy hosting does not allow outbound FTP access.

What Is DropBox And Why Do I Need A Free Account?

Dropbox.com is an online service/site that will give you 2GB of online storage when you create a free user account. We need an account at Dropbox so that we can have our wordpress blog backed up and stored on a server at Dropbox that’s not part of our hosting.

What Is The Plugin BackWpUp And Why Do I Need It?

Well first off there are several plugins that will allow you to backup your entire wordpress site, but BackWpUp is the only plugin I’m aware of that will allow you to automatically upload it to your Dropbox account every day/week/month. The plugin has also been around for a long time and is well known in the wordpress community, plus it’s updated often.

Do I Even Need To Backup My Wordpress Site?

It’s entirely up to you, but let me try answer that question for you.
Would you be ok if someone just deleted your entire site?
Silly question right, of course you should be backing up your site and that’s exactly why I’m creating this tutorial to show you how to backup a wordpress site.

Backing Up Wordpress Step By Step

I recommend watching and following along to the video tutorial above, but I’m also going to give you some short step by step instructions on how to backup wordpress and send to Dropbox.

Step 1: Create A Free Account At DropBox

Simple head over to Dropbox.com and create yourslef a free account. Please note that you do not need to install or download the dropbox software to follow along.

Step 2: Install BackWpUp Plugin

Login to your blog dashboard, now via plugins/Add new search for BackWpUp, this is the plugin we're going to use and it’s by Inpsyde Gmbh. Once installed you can activate the plugin.

Step 3: Plugin Intro

After activating the plugin you should now see two new menu buttons, one in the top menu and another in the bottom of the left menu. Click on either one to see the plugin welcome page, now this page will talk about the free and Pro version of the plugin. Again to follow along you DO NOT need the Pro version. Just scroll all the way down and click the backup now button.

Step 4: Creating A Backup Job

Creating a full backup job if relatively straightforward and I’m going to briefly run over each TAB of options. But first you'll need to click on Create New Job, you can also get to this page via the BackWpUp menu.

General Options:
I personally change the backup name to “Full Backup” but this is totally optional. By default you can leave Job Tasks and Backup File Creation asis. Then for Job Destination you need to select “DropBox” as the backup destination. Log Files should already contain your email address, just double check as this is the email address errors get set to should something fail. “Save Changes”.

Schedule Options:
We want to select the second option “with wordpress cron”. Then you should see more options appear. Here you select how often you’d like the job to run and backup your wordpress site. If you only add one post per week, then consider setting it to backup weekly and select a time/day when least people will be visiting your site. “Save Changes”

DB Backup Options:
Click the ALL button so that all tables get a checkmarked, scroll down and press “Save Changes”. Please note that in the video I made a mistake and that’s why I added an overlay image.

Files Options:
Again by default everything is set to be backed up, but if you’d like to exclude folders/directories from being backed up you can by adding a checkmark next to the folder name. If you’re not sure what anything is, backup everything. If it turns out the total backup size is over 150MB+ then I’d consider asking someone what could be excluded. “Save Changes”

Plugins Options:
Nothing much to do on this page unless you'd like to change the file name or compression type..

To DropBox Options:
If you this TAB is missing go back to the first tab and make sure you have Dropbox selected as the destination and Save Changes.

First click on “Authenticate (Sandbox)” or “Authenticate (Full Dropbox)”. If you're not logged into Dropbox it’s going to ask you to login, then you’ll see a screen asking you to allow the plugin to communicate with Dropbox. Select “Allow”. It should bring you back to the option page. The folder name is what will be created over at Dropbox and file deletion I recommend setting too 3. 3 being the number of latest backup copies that will be stored on Dropbox. In other words, when a new backup in created and uploaded, the oldest copy in deleted. “Save Changes” or you’ll need to re-authenticate again.

Step 4: Run The Job
At this point if you've followed along everything should be working and on the next scheduled date a backup will be created and sent to dropbox, but it’s always recommend to “Run Now”. You may see a “Run Now” link on the page you’re currently on, if not via either BackWpUp Menu you can select Jobs.
Under the Jobs overview you’ll the new job you just created, hovering the cursor over the job will reveal a few more option, press the “Run Now” link and it will start to perform the complete backup.

It should only take a minute or so to complete, depending on the size of your site/blog, once it’s finished you can double check over at dropbox to confirm everything worked.


If you run into any problems you're welcome to comment here and myself or others will try help. Or you can also visit the plugin support page, I'm sure you'll find the answer to the problem http://wordpress.org/support/plugin/backwpup

If for some reason after you press "Allow" to connect DropBox with your Blog it redirects you to the Google Analytics plugin setting page, please deactivate the Google Analytics plugin just while you authenticate with DropBox, then Activate once BackWpUp in setup.

On a final note, if you found this video tutorial helpful, please hit the Like button below.

Join the Discussion
Write something…
Recent messages
LairsDen Premium
Very helpful video! Thank You.
Do you plan on doing a video on restoring your site from the backups?
Deebizness Premium

Easy to follow along with. You have delivered information for me which is very useful.

CWinter Premium
Absolutely fantastic training! Thanks!
Andrew007 Premium
Hi everybody! If I understand it correctly, I can't create an automatic Dropbox backup on my siterubix domain?
StubearBlack Premium
Thanks much!
T1967 Premium Top 100
Hey Welshy, GREAT tutorial ...love it ...i had an error that came up and i wanted to show you, can you PLEASE have a look for me please and let me know if i have anything to worry about please...Cheers Tania
backup warning   view image
Vanessa-WA Premium
I got the same issue. How did you resolve this?
T1967 Premium Top 100
deleted this plugin and replaced it with Marion's solutions its really easy and way better let me know how you get on xoxo Tania and secretary AL
Vanessa-WA Premium
Hey Tania! Thank you so much for your help. I deleted and installed your recommended plugin and it works perfectly!
T1967 Premium Top 100
Hey hun, Glad you are now sorted :-))
Al for Tania
candawalk Premium
Thanks Welshy! Great tutorial. It was very easy to follow. I'm all set up now!
gmalelang Premium
Thanks Welshy...awesome tut!
Tunde Premium
Thanks for this training! But, I have a teeny problem. I followed every step from the training, and at the end I tried to run the backup. I got the following message:

Cannot create folder: /mnt/vhosts/workhomesecurefuture.com/httpdocs/wp-content/uploads/backwpup-799774-logs

Dropbox is authenticated, I'm logged in, I did everything as it was explained.
Can someone help me out with this? Thanks a lot!
Hi Tunde,

There are some cases where certain WA hosting servers that DO NOT allow plugins to make outbound requests.

It sounds like you're one of those cases.

You can submit a support ticket here and explain the situation along with a link to this training as reference.

- Jay
P.S. Since the creation of this video training, WA now has daily back-ups, so in essence it does make this task redundant.
Tunde Premium
Thank you, Jay! Didn't know about the daily back-ups, I probably missed the information, but thanks for pointing that out! One less thing to worry about :)
You're welcome.

To solidify this, WA hosting shows you the last time your site was backed up. Attached image for reference.

You can see this with your own sites here:
backup   view image
Tunde Premium
Oh great, thanks again!
LynneHuy Premium Top 50
Thanks for this awesome training :)
However I followed everything as instructed and I can't do the "run now" backup you suggested.

I get this error: The HTTP response test get an error "couldn't connect to host"Not expected HTTP response body:

Please let me know if you can help!
PLarkins Premium
You can send a private message to Kyle. That's what I did. He informed me that really didn't have to worry about the backup because the support team here at WA backup your site for you.

Which I would guess is true. When I first started here at WA, I didn't know what I was doing when changing themes. Instead of just changing themes I went to build a website to change it. Erased everything.

I sent a Support ticket to WA. The restored everything I lost. Hope this help.
LynneHuy Premium Top 50
Oh cool, thank you!
YaelLynn Premium
Cool. Thank you so much. I'm going to try to adjust coding, which I've never done anything close to, but I'm afraid if I screw something up, I can't just undo. Apparently, I kind of can. that makes me feel a lot braver about trying something new.
RandellD Premium
HI Welshy,
Following you now! Thanks for the tutorial on backup wordpress to dropbox.
abe17 Premium
Thanks Welshy,
great post,
suzyq97439 Premium
Very easy to follow and completed. Thank You!
BillLuhrs Premium
Great Training ..
peter65 Premium
Have been finding it difficult to create my backup for sometimes now. The problem i have is in the last phase, not authenticated showed up then underneath is create account, the problem is that there is no provision for authentication. Where have i gone wrong, need help please.God bless you.
PLarkins Premium
I was having trouble backing my site up. I sent Kyle a Private Message. He said that the support team at WA backs our site up and I need not worry about it. So I don't
peter65 Premium
Thanks for your response,God bless you.