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How Do I Backup My Website?

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Key Takeaways

  • In this article, we’ll answer the question, “How do I backup my website?” 
  • There are several ways to back your website up and protect your valuable data.
  • It’s important to understand the difference between backing up your website manually and automatically.

Note: If you’re searching for how to backup a website you have with Network Solutions, step-by-step instructions can be found in the Group Knowledge Base. Use the following links to read about specific website backup services from Network Solutions:

What Does It Mean to Backup My Website?

Backing up your site means making a copy of all the data that makes up your website. There are a variety of ways of achieving this, because every site is unique.

Why Do I Need to Backup My Website?

Your website needs to be backed up if only because it’s the only way to easily restore it in case there’s a problem. Whether you make a mistake while editing your site or something more nefarious such as a cyberattack occurs, you need to be prepared.

How often you update your website is also a motivating factor when it comes to creating a backup. All website owners should have at least one, but if you update your website daily, weekly or on any other regular basis, then you should consider backing up your website just as often as you add new content. 

How Can I Manually Backup My Website?

Backing up your website files manually is as straightforward as accessing the files on the website server and copying them into a new destination. Many hosting providers include direct access to the website server (sometimes called Control Panel or cPanel) as part of their service agreements. You can check to see if you have this kind of access by logging into your hosting account and navigating to your website products or by contacting your provider. If your hosting provider grants you access, you can copy the files to your backup destination. 

File transfer protocol (FTP) is an equally effective method of manually backing up websites, though it requires an FTP client such as FileZilla or Cyberduck to access the server. Once you’ve booted up your FTP client, you’ll also need your FTP username, password and hosting address, all of which you would get from your hosting provider. After you’ve entered this information in your FTP client and accessed the server, the website files will populate in the client so you can begin the process of copying them to your new backup destination. Contact your hosting provider if you’re having trouble finding your FTP information.

Copying files into a new folder might sound easy enough, but the more data you have to copy, the longer the process of creating a website backup will take. Fortunately, any repetitive task that can be performed on a computer (like copying website files) can be automated.

How Can I Automatically Backup My Website?

Manual backups are nice to have, but when you don’t have the time or willingness to create them, backing up your sites automatically is the way to go. 

Automated website backup solutions such as CodeGuard create a backup of your website daily, giving you peace of mind that you can restore your site in case of emergency. Some services like CodeGuard can also check to see if changes have been made to your website, prompting you to restore your website in case of the unexpected. Network Solutions offers CodeGuard as an add-on service that can be purchased when you sign up for a website hosting account, inside the Account Manager or on CodeGuard’s website

Note: Here are instructions for using CodeGuard with Network Solutions.

Some web hosts may also include backup tools to simplify the process, making it easier to copy website data all at once rather than by copying one file at a time. Contact your hosting provider to see if these tools are available to you. 

Note: Network Solutions customers can use Anytime Backups to create backups automatically.


Products mentioned in this blog post include:

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