Saturday, May 21st, 2022

Why we store backups offsite and why should you

We store our maintenance customers’ backups in secure offsite cloud storage, in this post I want to explain why we store backups offsite and why you should too.

the problem that knocks us out of the store

Many of the available backup plugins take a backup and then create an archive in the wp-content directory. The backup is stored at the same location as your website.

If your website’s disk is archived when it crashes, the archive is gone and you cannot recover.

If some mischievous hackers plan to sabotage your site and spot your backup archives, guess they’ll be deleted, I’ve seen it. You can’t recover from that hack.

You need to keep your backup archive separate from the machine your website is on.

I am reminded of the good old days of my corporate IT work, where I packed magnetic tapes in a fireproof case and stored them in a safe at our remote site, I’m so glad we took advantage of it. Can secure remote storage without physical media.

We take our backups and then move them to a remote secure service, and, we do this automatically so that we never forget to move our archive.

Don’t depend on your hosting company for backup, many people expect you to do their own backup and they will not do the restore for you.

Where should you store your archives

Secure offsite cloud storage sounds expensive and complicated, but you probably already have some and didn’t know about it.

You can store your collection on the following services:

  • drop box
  • google drive
  • Amazon S3
  • iCloud

If you have one of these services for your photos or for backing up your PDF files, you can reuse it to save your WordPress backups as well.

Plugins and services that store collections offsite

Here’s a selection of free and premium plugins and services that store your collection off-site.

BackWPup - https://wordpress.org/plugins/backwpup/

My favorite free backup plugin, you can create automatic backups and store them in Dropbox, Amazon S3, Microsoft Azure and Google Drive to name a few of their offsite options.

VaultPress - https://vaultpress.com

VaultPress is a premium service created by Automattic, the people who brought you hits like WordPress and Gravatar.

Regular backups are taken and stored offsite on our own infrastructure.

Backup Buddy - https://ithemes.com/backupbuddy

A premium plugin that gives you the option to store backups on Backup Buddy Stash (their own infrastructure), Google Drive, Drop Box, Amazon S3.

ManageWP - https://managewp.com

A premium service with a backup feature to manage your WordPress sites. It stores your backups on Amaxzon S3 servers, but also has the option to save archives to Dropbox or Google Drive.

how do we do it

At the time of writing we take care of backing up about 170 sites daily and we use Managewp. We take daily full backups and store them offsite on Amazon S3 storage.

Some customers want access to their archives, so we copy them to their Dropbox as well as our Amazon S3 storage.

Wrap Up – Why do we store backups offsite and why should you too?

In every post I write about backing up your WordPress site, I also add a short note on Backup Twin Sister Restore.

Having a backup archive is of no use if you don’t know how to restore it. Why bother if you don’t know how to download it from your cloud storage solution of choice and then restore that backup.

Learn how to do a restore before you get into the stressful situation of having to restore for real.

“You’re only as good as your back back!” As my old Ghaffar used to say.

Photo credit: Olilov Flickr via CompFight CC

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