Automate Your Website File and MySQL Backups

Part 1 – Prerequisites

Backing up your website files and databases is one the most important things a website owner can do. In this article, I’m going to show you a method of automating backups of your website files and MySQL databases. Then we will use WinSCP to automatically retrieve those backups and store them on your local computer on an automated schedule.

There are a few prerequisites to this method:

  1. Your website needs to be hosted on a linux based server
  2. You need to be able to create cron jobs on your web server
  3. You need an FTP/SFTP account set up on your web server
  4. You will need to download and install the free program WinSCP
    • You can get it here.
  5. You need a Windows computer with access to the Windows task scheduler

It is best to use SFTP instead of FTP if your web host supports it (most should).  Although FTP can be used, SFTP is highly recommended for security reasons.

Anywhere you see certain words highlighted in red bold italic text throughout this article, you need to change for your custom situation as follows:

CpanelUsername = The username you use to log on to your web hosting control panel.
MySQLusername = Your username to access your MySQL database.
MySQLpassword = Your password to access your MySQL database.
dbXname = The name of your database.
SFTPUsername = The username for your SFTP account.
SFTPPassword = The password for your SFTP account.
SFTPport = The port you use for SFTP (usually 22, sometimes 2222).

Document Root: This article assumes that the path to your public web directory (AKA document root) is “/home/CpanelUsername/public_html”. This may not be your actual case, depending on your web host. If this is not your path to document root, you will have to replace every instance of “/home/CpanelUsername/public_html” with your actual path to document root. If you are not sure what your path to document root is, you will need to check with your web hosting provider.

Next page – Backing up your databases.

This entry was posted in Website Administration, Website Backups and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Automate Your Website File and MySQL Backups

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