2017 is almost over and the reports are coming in. There have been several high-profile data security breaches potentially affecting millions of individuals’ private information. Not so long ago, in 2015, there were more than 177,866,236 personal records exposed via 780 data security breaches, according to the ITRC Data Breach Reports.
An outage in 2015 accidentally took down many a number of the Internet’s most visible companies which are hosted on Amazon Web Services. These include Airbnb, Tinder, Reddit, IMDb offline, Netflix and many others. In 2011, AWS suffered a days-long outage that knocked out popular sites such as Reddit and the New York Times offline.
If an Amazon Web Services team member could mistype a command when debugging the S3 billing process, and accidentally remove crucial subsystems, causing internal and external chaos, it is not such an off chance that our websites might crash due to errors made in coding as well.
The threat is very much real and should not be left to chance.
WordPress websites need a backup to overcome such adverse situations. WordPress itself does not have built-in backup techniques available. WordPress Backup plugins are immensely useful to keep data safe. There are many backup plugins available in the market now.
In this article, I am going to take a look at the most popular plugins available that enable backup of WordPress websites. We have these plugins to thank for the easy backup mechanisms they offer.
When looking for the best backup plugin you have to factor in price, your features preferences and backup functionality.
To make it simpler for you I will give you an introduction about each of them, their best features, and discuss their pros and cons.
BackUpBuddy from iThemes claims to complete backup in 5 simple steps. With ongoing development and frequent updates, along with extensive documentation and support, BackupBuddy is one of the well-regarded ones, generally.
To use BackupBuddy you need to install BackupBuddy import script to your server, then run the BackupBuddy wizard and perform the steps. The tutorial is here.
- BackupBuddy can be used as a complete backup solution.
- It can perform scheduled backup, i.e. can easily schedule daily, weekly, or monthly backups.
- It also automatically stores your backups in Dropbox, Amazon S3, Rackspace Cloud, FTP, Stash (their cloud service), or you can email it to yourself.
- Off-site storage is possible since it automatically sends your backup files to several remote WordPress backup storage locations.
- ZIP-downloadable backups are available. Once BackupBuddy completes your backup, you get a downloadable zip file of your entire WordPress website.
- You can exclude certain files and database according to your preferences.
- BackupBuddy helps you move a WordPress site to a new host or domain
- You get access to premium support forums, regular updates, and 1GB of cloud storage to store your backups.
- The ImportBuddy script that handles this process updates URLs and paths within the database for you, so everything is up-to-date when you’re done with migration.
- You can duplicate, migrate and restore websites.
- There are comprehensive online documentation and tutorials
- BackupBuddy Quick Setup Wizard form takes just a few minutes to fill but figuring out the storage destination and the backup schedule is definitely not easy for a regular WordPress user.
- There is no free trial option.
- Downloading the right backup and uploading it to the server become stressful if you need to get your site back up quickly.
- Encryption makes your backups safer since your site copies are not immediately usable, and need that extra effort to decrypt. Unfortunately, BackUpBuddy requires other iTheme products for this.
- The support is via forums so it is not as user-friendly as for some services
- There is no support for WordPress Multisite
Starts from $80 per year, 2 sites
Get BackUpBuddy here.
BlogVault is a WordPress plugin that is designed to keep your WordPress website data absolutely safe and secure through backups and effective security measures. It is built in such a manner that it will keep all of your security and backup tools in one convenient place. In this manner, you can have the peace of mind that in case the unthinkable happens, you can easily restore it using the backups saved in your blog’s very own “vault”.
Amos Struck from Stock Photo Press Magazine testifies, “After I tried several expensive backup solutions and useless plugins, I found BlogVault. It saved two of my blogs, twice and I even use it to move sites from one server to another. I also love the test-restore feature– it saves lots of time. The service is outstanding and always willing to assist. Keep going BlogVault!”
It has become a rising star in the backup tools market and continues to spectacularly impress everyone.
- BlogVault has zero-configuration attribute. When you add the site to BlogVault dashboard and you can install the plugin right there. Your site is automatically backed up.
- BlogVault is a real-time WordPress backup service.
- It can backup entire WordPress sites; WordPress files and database backups complete with custom files and tables as well
- With the Test Restore option, you can see how your backup version appears exactly, complete with content, links, and media.
- Using one-click Auto Restore you can immediately get back online, in the case of any untoward eventualities.
- BlogVault enables staging on its own test servers. This is hugely beneficial to everyone who wants to test their code before running it live.
- Since BlogVault performs incremental backups, storage space within your BlogVault account is efficiently used. After the first time BlogVault backs up your entire site, it only backs up the changes made since the last backup version.
- BlogVault ensures backups are encrypted, and secure.
- BlogVault is a managed service and hence it is easier to perform and achieve your end goal. You can always reach out to the support team for any help.
- You have direct access to every functionality, no matter which plan, free or premium you are using.
- It is the best in class website migration functionality.
- Their latest addition is enabling a staging environment to test the changes before making live from within the dashboard itself. That in itself is a strong value addition.
- BlogVault has structured sections for each finished backup, which gives you simple directions to later find the backup you need.
- Uploading your backup to Dropbox, auto-restoring it, download it, migrate the site, or adding a note to a specific status about that backup is an easy way to categorise your data.
- Since the processes occur on BlogVault servers, your site does not suffer any downtime. Your resources are not utilized.
- BlogVault dashboard is very organised. It lists and categorizes the date of each backup, as well as the changes made to your site with every backup version, so you can easily find exactly what you are looking for.
- The trial version does not require your card details.
- Their support team is extremely helpful and has been praised by a lot of people.
- Plugin and theme updates can be managed easily from within the dashboard itself.
- Cloud integration is only available for Dropbox.
- Individual file restores are not supported, but you can download an individual file.
Free/ Starts from $89 per year, 1 site
Get BlogVault here.
UpdraftPlus Backup and Restoration
With high profile trusted users like Microsoft and Princeton University UpDraftPlus has definitely made itself a reliable name. It performs a complete backup of your WordPress site and stores it on the cloud or you can download the content to your computer.
The plugin supports scheduled and on-demand backups as and when required. You can also choose the specific data to backup. It can automatically upload your backups to Dropbox, Google Drive, S3, Rackspace, FTP, SFTP, email, and many other cloud storage services.
- It performs complete database and file system backup
- It supports WordPress backups to UpdraftPlus Vault, Amazon S3, Dropbox, Rackspace Cloud Files, Google Drive, email, and many more.
- Automatic backups are possible
- It conveniently backs up each WordPress entity (database, plugins, themes, uploaded content and “other” content) in a separate file, all from WordPress control panel.
- Backup is encrypted.
- You can restore individual files, just your database, or your entire site.
- It can backup sites of 100GB; and the file size only limited by Web host.
- It is Multi-site (i.e. WPMU/WordPress Network) compatible.
- 1 GB of free storage is included, but if you need more, it has to be purchased.
- You can set backup schedules every 4, 8 or 12 hours, daily, weekly, fortnightly or monthly.
- It is translated to over 16 languages.
- Any failed uploads are automatically retried.
- It is a DIY-backup tool. It needs tinkering and setting up which requires valuable user time.
- Customer support available only with the premium version. As such, majority of the features are available only with premium pack.
- There may be some add-ons and hidden costs.
- UpdraftPlus automatic restoration works only when your site is up. When your site crashes, you need to manually restore it.
- Although UpdraftPlus takes just a few minutes to setup, it requires a thorough understanding of your backup needs such as schedule, off-site location, archive limit, etc which can be overwhelming for regular users.
Free/ Starts from $70, 2 sites
Get UpdraftPlus here.
CodeGuard performs an intelligent mechanism of indirect backup interaction with your website. It can perform an initial backup of your site, so that henceforth it just looks for modifications made later. If changes are noted, CodeGuard makes another backup. This is incremental backup. You can also restore your site at any moment in time. It doesn’t hurt that it has a cool robot called C. G. that keeps you updated with any notifications.
- Automatic backups with real-time updates.
- Constant monitoring – CodeGuard looks for any changes happening on your site.
- Easy restoration.
- Uses Amazon S3 for storage.
- It works on not just WordPress, but on other website platforms as well.
- It excludes specific folders, files or databases from your backup or includes them according to requirements.
- There is a month to month subscription feature.
- Uses Amazon Web Service’s S3 to store your website backups
- The Automatic Restoration feature needs you to contact them to get your site back up. The restoration process takes 25-45 minutes, and even this depends on the subscription plan you’re on.
- Unfortunately there is Priority Queuing of CodeGuard process, for tasks like on-demand backups, and site restoration. Customers with lower plans will have to patiently deal with longer response time, than those with higher plans to get on-demand backups and restorations done.
- The basic plans usually don’t get access to the actually useful ‘Advanced’ features, such as Test Restore.
Free/ Starts from $60 per year, 1 site
Get CodeGuard here.
VaultPress is by Automattic. Yes, the same Automattic that built WooCommerce, JetPack, Gravatar and Akismet. It one of the most influential names in WordPress lingo.
In VaultPress everything happens on autopilot. It gives you a cool calendar view to check on all your previous backups.
Depending on the plan you choose, you can also get additional security features and spam protection – all that on top of the default backup functionality.
- Database and filesystem backups.
- Real-time monitoring.
- Easy restoration.
- Daily website scans.
- Site migration features.
- Off site storage.
- 30-day backup archival.
- Detailed information about each backup like stats and runs.
- Advanced security scanning in premium feature
- Fix detected viruses, malware, and other dangerous threats with a single click.
- Protect your content and brand reputation with spam defense.
- It has a good monthly subscription option.
- VaultPress lists details of the number of posts, pages, and other such sections of files and databases. This might not be helpful when you need to know if a backup contains a specific plugin update.
- It is now under the JetPack bundle so you get a set of unwanted plugins along with VaultPress.
- VaultPress lets you see individual files, but not entire backups as they would look on your site
Starts from, $165/year , 1 site
Get VaultPress here.
The Winner is…
VaultPress has cool security and add-on features but can be confusing to navigate. CodeGuard is super user-friendly. However, the plans are expensive. BackUpBuddy and UpdraftPlus are both hands-on tools.
BlogVault, on the other hand, does an outstanding job, and is a great solution for most WordPress users; it has the complete package for a beginner to the backup world. The neat backup features, decent prices, non-technical interface, intuitive menus, and user-friendly dashboard are only the cherries on the top. With the exceptional customer support, BlogVault proves itself to be a remarkable backup tool. I would personally recommend BlogVault for its dynamic interface itself.
Of course, you have to remember that each user has their own requirements to be fulfilled. So what works for one person, might not, for another.
Whatever the case, I hope you understand the importance of backup now. A website which is not backed up is a disaster waiting to happen, and by then — it’s too late.
So, which of these WordPress backup plugins do you like to use on your site? Please let us know in the comments. Tell us if you come across any issues with either of them.