Should I back up my database or website? How often? What to back up? Ian Zader, an IT-professional and website expert, gives valuable advices on backup strategy.
Your website is a major part of your business. You don’t want to lose any work you’ve done on your site, but it happens all too often. Even the best webhosts can have technical problems, and before you know it, you may have lost your database. No longer do you have a customer list, complete with emails addresses and contact numbers. This type of data loss can be devastating to business. There are, however, ways to avoid fatal errors in this area.
Any time you change your website, you need to run a backup. Otherwise, you run the chance of losing all of your changes. This applies to any time you may move or replace material on your site, as well as when you add or delete material. When you do this, make sure you put your backup in a file with the date on it, so that you know when the most recent backup was.
Your webhost should run regular backups of all of its websites. This should be scheduled, with dates available for the most recent backup file. Check to see if automatic backups are part of your webhost’s services. They may be included, but backups may cost extra. If you turned it down to start with, you may want to reconsider – especially as your website, databases, and other data grow. A major crash could wipe you out if you have not subscribed to your webhost’s automatic backup service.
You should also have a separate backup system in place. There are independent companies on the web that offer strictly storage and backup systems. These can be invaluable to you in maintaining your information safely. If you have found that your webhost has more downtime than you anticipated, this may be a life saver. Your independent backup may be the only one that survives a system crash at the webhost.
How Often To Back Up
The frequency with which you back up your files and sites depends on the amount of traffic your site sees. If you have a very active website, with purchases taking place daily, you’ll want to run a backup every day. Otherwise, you could lose valuable customer order information.
If, however, you mostly have a fixed site with little exchange of information, a monthly backup will be sufficient.
What To Back Up
You’ll want to remember to not only backup your website, you’ll want to back up databases and files. A backup and migrate feature will allow you to set up a regular schedule for backups, and they will be saved in a third location (the first is the original location, the second is the webhost backup.
You also want to make sure you have backed up your core files. You should make sure to do this before you upgrade your core files, because sometimes the core files can be corrupted with an upgrade, and you lose it all.
With diligence from you and your webhost, you can prevent catastrophic failure of your site through regular backups.
Ian Zader is a computer veteran, he has watched computers transform from machines niche for businesses to one in every home. He currently works for Spartan, a company that do Website Design in Exeter.
Backup of a website is a serious question. Some web hosters back up customers’ data and some don’t. The perfect way to be sure in data protection is to back up a website by yourself.
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