One-Click WordPress Backup And Clone

by derek on September 2, 2011 · 44 comments

Backup and Clone WordPress Blogs

Chances are you are like most bloggers…you know how important it is to backup your WordPress blog / website yet you don’t really have a backup plan in place.
I’ve been guilty of this myself on a number of blogs.

I need to put together a backup plan for my blog, but everything has been okay so I will do X, Y, and Z first. Once those are done I will backup everything.

Sound familiar?
That strategy is perfectly fine, at least until you find yourself needing to restore your blog and you realize that you never took the time to sit down and create that backup strategy. Once you need the backup it is too late.
Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a simple way to backup your entire blog with the click of a button?

Enter Backup Creator

Backup Creator is a new WordPress plugin that simplifies the backup process and instantly provides you with a backup strategy to protect your WordPress blog or website.
Once you install the plugin, creating a full backup of your website really is as simple as clicking a button. The backup is created and you are provided the option of downloading the full backup, or simply leaving the backup in place and downloading a zip file that will restore your entire site from the current location.

Backup Creator WordPress Plugin

Personally, I would recommend downloading the full backup. The reason for this is because by default the backup is stored in the uploads directory of your blog. In the event that your site goes down and your host does not have a backup, you could potentially lose the backup that was created.

Restore Anywhere

This plugin provides the ability to restore your backup to your current site, or any other WordPress installation. This might not seem like a big deal, but consider the scenario when you want to change hosting companies.
Often times people will stick with a host because they want to avoid the hassle of moving their entire website over to a new host. With the Backup Creator plugin, you can create a backup of your current blog and then restore it on your new hosting account. The process makes this task extremely easy.

Clone Your Website

Why would you want to clone your website? There are a number of reasons, but here are two that encouraged me to utilize this plugin on my websites:

  1. Create a new design or theme. When you want to create a new design or theme for your blog, you usually want to test it out and see how it will look with your content and information. Using this plugin, you can create a clone of your website on a test website or subdomain with the click of a button. This will allow you to work on the design with an exact duplicate of your current site.
  2. Multiple websites. If you’re anything like me, you have multiple websites – maybe dozens. Typically you install the same plugins, themes, etc. on each site. Now you can simply create that once and make a backup that can be used to instantly clone your preferred setup on any other website.

The ability to clone your website can save you a considerable amount of time and headaches. As much as I like the ability to easily create a backup of my website, I see a lot of value in the clone capability and know that this will simplify my process when creating new sites.
You might be thinking that you can do this now by exporting your current blog and importing it on the new site. While that gets you part of the way there, the problem with this approach is that the URLs of the original blog are carried over to the new site. With Backup Creator, it updates the links and settings to reference the new URL in place of the original URL.

Not All Roses

As much as I like this plugin so far, there is one thing that could present a problem. As I mentioned earlier, by default the backup is stored in your uploads folder. While this isn’t a problem, it could become a problem – not from a usability perspective but from a storage perspective.
Depending on your web host, you may have a limited amount of storage space. The size of the backup file can be quite large, obviously depending on the size of your current site. If you leave the backup files in place on your server, you could potentially eat away at your available storage in a short amount of time.
Also, this plugin is not free.
Granted the price is currently only $7.00 (will be increasing to $17.00 shortly, possibly higher) but many in the WordPress community have become accustomed to everything being free, particularly plugins.
There are a number of premium plugins on the market, so Backup Creator is not alone in charging a fee but this will certainly deter some people from grabbing it. However, I love the flexibility it provides me and I think it is well worth the money.
Let me know if you have any questions about the plugin and I will do my best to help you out based on my experience with the plugin.
Or, you can go grab your copy now before the price goes up! 🙂

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{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

Emma@Bästa Elavtalet September 3, 2011 at 6:01 am

Wow, Seems like a great tool! looking to invest in a cloning software, can you tell me how it compares to backup buddy? they seem similar, but after reading this i am leaning towards backup creator to be honest.

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derek September 3, 2011 at 9:50 am

Emma, I don’t have any experience with Backup Buddy so I cannot accurately provide any comparison. I took a quick look at the BB website and they look similar in core functionality, but BB provides more features such as the scheduled backups and it appears to have more options in what to do with your backup file in terms of storage. However, that comes with a price given it is $150 for unlimited sites.

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Resume September 3, 2011 at 6:32 am

Hey, its really good to have such multifunctional backup creator. You have also discussed disadvantage of using this plug-ins. But I think that shortcomings of this plug-in can be sorted out. Its really magical to have entire backup with single click, and the cloning software will also increase the efficiency of operation.

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Manuel Thomas@ dad's fun math games mathematics maths kids child children parents teachers homeschool September 3, 2011 at 4:41 pm

Derek,
I’ve use some backup plugins that took a shotgun approach to backup process. In my primary domain I have subdomains with their own databases and sites. I only want make backups when I change something on a specific site. Can this be done with BackupCreator?

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derek September 4, 2011 at 3:54 pm

Manuel, based on my testing if you’re making a backup of the primary domain it is going to lump all of the subdomains in as well. However, if you backup a single subdomain it will only include that subdomain.

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Ledlys September 5, 2011 at 9:32 am

Cool article 🙂 Thanks mate!

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Kostas@Online Opportunities September 5, 2011 at 11:48 am

Having backups for your site it’s a must, you never know if someone will hack your site or you lose important data.

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Settlement Purchaser September 5, 2011 at 12:38 pm

Nice I have been waiting for something like this. I know how hard it can be once your site crashes or something happens. And more often than not it happens when you are no way of correcting it quickly. With this is seems amazing easy to restore your site. I can’t wait to try it out for myself.

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derek September 6, 2011 at 12:59 pm

This is the really appealing feature for me as well, I’ve got a growing number of sites and all of them follow the same basic core setup with regard to plugins, settings, etc. Using the ability to clone a site and instantly deploy it will save me a good deal of time.

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Myke @ release date September 6, 2011 at 7:06 am

Speaking from experience, backing up your wordpress is crucial. A few years back I ran into some huge problems when my site crashed and I was unable to restore it since I had no backup.
But since we’re on the topic, I would like to ask you what do you think about vaultpress.com ? Is it worth the money ?

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derek September 6, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Myke, unfortunately I have never used VaultPress so I cannot really speak to the value / worth. However, I’ve reviewed the high level information and the really nice feature is that VaultPress handles everything automatically without any user intervention required.
Whether that is worth a minimum of $15/month is largely dependent on the individual. If your site is earning a decent amount on a monthly basis, this might be a wise investment. If you’re strapped for cash, maybe not so much.
Also, it appears that this fee is per installation or website. So if you have 5 different sites, you’d have to pay $15 per site. I might be wrong about that, but that is how I’ve interpreted their plans and pricing. As a comparison, the Backup Creator plugin is a one-time fee and can be used on all of your websites.
Hope that helps; personally I think VaultPress looks really appealing but is a little too expensive for my tastes / budget.

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Dan September 6, 2011 at 9:21 am

Great one Derek! Will definitely use this amazing tool. I often create sites with the same set of plug-ins and similar design so this tool is for me. Thanks a million!

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derek September 6, 2011 at 1:05 pm

Dan, my response two above was meant to support your comment on the ability to clone…this feature makes the plugin a winner for me.

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BODHost Ltd September 6, 2011 at 11:32 am

FYI, you can also take an entire backup of your wordpress website, including database through control panel such as cPanel or Plesk…

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derek September 6, 2011 at 1:08 pm

That is a great point…there are multiple ways to approach your backup strategy and each person needs to find what works the best for them.
On most hosting providers, there is the option to do a full backup (and restore as well) of your database and home directory. Also, this option will often times include mail settings too. Where this option falls a little short is the ability to clone an existing site to use in the creation of new sites. Might not be a big deal to some, but might be important to others.
Thanks for pointing out this additional option for people to use in their backup strategy!

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Barry Wheeler@Blogging Tips September 6, 2011 at 5:21 pm

Great site! This will truly simplify the backup process for those not overly technical.
It’s amazing how many bloggers never backup their content or their site. This is truly a great service that everyone should be using.

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CharlesKelsey September 8, 2011 at 3:02 pm

I have only used wordpress for the purpose of using it but lately I have been amazed by how powerful wordpress can be. Your site sure is very informative and useful to me. Thanks.

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iosh training September 16, 2011 at 7:44 am

Will cloning not affect SEO, I’ve read this kind of thing can affect how well sites appear in rankings will it not have the same affect on blogs.

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derek September 16, 2011 at 9:41 am

The idea is to create a clone of the base WordPress install once you have it configured with all of your settings, plugins, theme, and the like. If you do that before you begin adding content to the site, you will have a clone that will instantly have a new site setup with all of your preferred settings, etc. and then all you have to do is start adding content.
Does that make sense?

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Scott Jones September 18, 2011 at 3:58 pm

The importance of backup…tell me about it. Some of my websites were hacked only recently and I lost everything, the funny thing was that the hacker was ready to help me restore the website, of course in return for money:S Luckily I have this brilliant web designer who was able to restore everything in no time.

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botan September 20, 2011 at 4:11 am

Deneyimlerinden konuşan wordpress yedeklenmesi çok önemlidir. Birkaç yıl öncesine sitem çöktü, bazı büyük sorunları koştu ve hiç yedek beri geri edemedi.

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Minisite design September 20, 2011 at 5:20 am

This really reduces the lots of pain…thx for sharing

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Vins@Canon Printer Repair September 20, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Wow! Derek this was indeed a very useful WP-plugin, I’ll be using this on my sites when I need to test the design template or when having some maintenance on my site.

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Binghamton website design September 21, 2011 at 5:05 pm

Derek nice find!! I’m going to give this a whirl on a couple of my sites I’ve been “going to” back up for the last year or so. Seems to be one of those things we know we should do but never quite get around to it

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Dany @ Yahoo domain September 22, 2011 at 7:27 am

And this is just a plugin? What a neat little idea! Can’t believe it took Wordpress this long to create it but I’m glad that it’s now here. It used to be that we had to backup everything on a separate server! Times have changed!

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Johnny Optimo September 23, 2011 at 11:15 pm

Hah I wish I had something like this years back when I was breaking my back transfering wordpress installs. Well, I’m basically a master in that now and it’s actually really easy once you understand it.
But.. to be able to use something like ths when selling a theme+content to a buyer can definitely increase buyer confidence.

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Watch Online October 1, 2011 at 7:28 am

I really need this plug in, personally I used DB backup in my wordpress but it really sucks on Wordpress 3.2.0 so uninstall it and move for Database backuping manual with my hosting. But reading this blog I get your new plug in and after trying this on my blog, works, I will use it on my other site.

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Michael@Auto Insurance Guide October 3, 2011 at 3:04 pm

Hey, I believe this plugin is immensely helpful. I do use a plug-in that back-ups weekly the database. however, if something happens, I’m not clear on how I can get my blog back, including design and everything. Great share, thanks so much!

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Lennart Heleander@Marbella apartments October 8, 2011 at 9:43 am

Hi Derek,
A cheap tool that just costing $7, the cost of a couple of Starbucks Caramel Macchiato, and I can get a full recovery solution, or simply a backup tool to live my life in a better way.

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Eren@ Embracing Blogging October 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Hey Derek,
I just spent my entire Sunday backing up all of my blogs and subdirectories.
The wp database plugin is currently giving me issues so finding a replacement is certainly a great idea.
I do manual backups too, but as you know those take a lot of time.
Thanks for letting us know about this plugin.
All the best,
Eren

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klaus@online lån October 24, 2011 at 2:52 am

thanks for this.
i will try it on my blogs. it couldnt be easyer

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Self Deprecate Political Cartoons and Humor November 10, 2011 at 11:30 am

Pretty neat, I’ll have to check that out.

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Gina November 14, 2011 at 1:28 pm

Hmmmm, interestingly enough barely two months after this initial post not only is the reviewed plugin more expensive, but almost twice the amount of the original price increase the author warned of. It is now $37 and while still cheaper than say, a plugin like back up buddy, I still feel that it’s over priced for something that hasn’t been vetted long enough in the industry. I tried to check their site out, but the website is so shockingly annoying (autoplay video, no controls to turn it off right away – had to hit mute) with a lack of easily accesible information (like FAQs and common support issues), that I simply had to exit the site. Sounded promising but their own sales page turned me off. That says something.

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derek November 21, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Gina, you are correct that the price has gone up a fair amount since this was originally published. After the initial offer expired, I believe they ran sales periods at $17 and then bumped to $27 (if I remember correctly) and now settled in at the $37 price point.
Also, I am in agreement with you on how marketing tactics such as the auto-play videos with no controls are a complete turn off. They have been pretty good about working with their customers though on resolving any issues with specific hosting companies and offering guidance on how things should be done.
Time will tell whether or not they are able to hang in there with more established offerings but I have found their tool to be useful in my work. Hope you find something that suits your needs!

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Settlement Purchaser November 16, 2011 at 11:11 am

I have been guilty of the same and am currently trying to get one of my sites back to what it was from a seriously old back up.

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Maja@fantastic sams November 20, 2011 at 12:50 am

This plug-in is more than a gift for me. I will sure install on my blog to secure my website data for long run.

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Jesse@Village Walk real estate December 18, 2011 at 9:58 am

Back up is really important but users tend to forget about it since it’s time consuming. However with your steps, it would make it easier and encourage a lot of users to back up their files. Thank you for sharing.

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Oliver February 16, 2012 at 8:43 am

Cool article and nice Info

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Isaac B. February 22, 2012 at 8:22 am

I use this plugin for spinning sites. It’s phenomenal.

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Janice@Playstation 4 February 23, 2012 at 7:10 am

Awesome tool! I learned the hardway that you need to back up your blogs. I was trying to modify my wordpress theme, and I made a mistake where the server wouldn’t read the pages. I had nothing backed up and the website wouldn’t load. Luckily, I was able to FTP everything off the site… But it was a scary moment, and I routinely back everything up. However, I do it manually. Looking to automate this process…

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Jean @ Used Tires March 1, 2012 at 9:27 am

I too have been guilty of not backing up my WP blog site on many occasions even thought it bit me once or twice. Backup Creator sounds like a real good solution.
-Jean

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Linda July 25, 2012 at 10:10 pm

Agree on backups….take it one step further and have redundancy for those backups. Place a copy of your file, blog or site in a location other than your primary computer. An external drive of cloud storage works.

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Haroun Kola@Forex Trading September 24, 2012 at 11:41 am

I’ll use this plugin mainly to restore and clone a base site. What a revelation…

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