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Create and restore a backup of your Joomla website

Creating a backup of your Joomla website is simple. All you have to do is download your website's data (files and database) from your hosting server using a file management tool. 

Following the steps below you can quickly and simply have a backup of your website locally on your computer's hard disk.

Backup all website files

There are two ways to download all your website's files from your hosting server to your computer's hard disk. 

The first and quickest way is to use the File Manager tool through the control panel of your hosting account. To do this:

  • Login to cPanel
  • and find the File Manager tool under the Files category. 
  • Then navigate to your Joomla website installation folder and select all the files inside it. 
  • Finally click the Compress button at the top of the page.  

This way the File Manager tool will create and save a compressed .zip in the destination you will choose. 

Now again through the File Manager tool (or an FTP client), you can download this file to your local computer's hard disk for future use. 

The second way is through an FTP client with which you will transfer all the files on your hard disk. However this technique has a drawback. If you have many files it might take some time, because it is slower to download a lot small files that a large file (Joomla installation has 3000 files, add your website's data too, and you will see that's quite a lot).

Backup the website's database

In addition to your website's files you might want to create a backup of your website's database too. This can be done very easily using the phpMyAdmin tool you can find inside cPanel.

Before you start make sure that you know the name of your database and the user name and password for it. If you do not know it you can find this information in the configuration.php file that's stored in the Joomla installation directory. Open it using the File Manager and find the following three lines.

public $user = 'username';
public $password = 'password';
public $db = 'database';

These correspond to the database's user name = username, the database's password = password and the database's name = database. Once you find the information you need you can proceed with the creation of the backup..

  • Login to cPanel
  • and open the phpMyAdmin tool that you can find under the Databases category.
  • Then select your website's database from the left menu. 
  • Next click the Export button at the top of the page. 
  • If you want you can optionally change the export settings.
  • Finally click the Go button.

After a while the backup of your database will be ready. You can download it to your computer's hard drive using the File Manager from your cPanel, as you did previously with the compressed .zip file of your website's files.

Backup restore

In case anything happens to your website you can restore your data back to the hosting server to make it available again in a very short time.

To restore your website's files you will need to upload the compressed .zip file to your hosting server. Then delete the old files from the installation folder of your Joomla website and unzip the compressed .zip file in it using the File Manager tool. To do this click the .zip file, click the Export button and select the installation folder of your Joomla website. If you preferred to download your files using the File Manager tool you can upload them again to your Joomla installation directory. 

To restore the database you can use the phpMyAdmin tool. Click the database you want to restore, and delete the tables in it. Then click the Import button and upload the backup file you created previously.

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