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How does one "backup your data"?


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  #1  
Old Aug 25, 2010, 11:57 PM
flieg
 
21 posts · Aug 2010
California
How does one "backup your data"?

Good advice: Always backup your data prior to doing an update.

Not so clear: How does one do this? And more importantly, having done so and suffered from disaster, how does one recover?

I realize that this is not an easy question, but a simple procedure for unix-based systems so that someone like me who is working on a remote server knows which directories are critical and which can be ignored unless one has done something like modifying the base php files of Atahualpa (!), would be really nice.

Part of my frustration with the Atahualpa Theme (and in fact with every other theme I have tried) is that the theme writers try to *hide* what's going on.

I'm all for having easy ways to change things, but I also like to know what it is that I have just changed. Perhaps I'm just a cranky old coder who remembers that programs open, read and close input files, and open write and close output files, but I like to know what is going on, even while enjoying the fact that it is easy to make changes. Knowing which files are important, which are not and how to put them back in place would be a boon to me.

If this is actually covered in an FAQ somewhere, whack me upside the head with a clue-by-four and send me there.

-- F.
  #2  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 03:41 AM
juggledad's Avatar
juggledad
 
21,705 posts · Mar 2009
OSX 10.8.5 WP 3.8.x Atahualpa 3.7.x Safari 6.x Firefox 25 XP
The main repository for the data in WordPress, is the database. This is your 'file'. Atheme or plugin is just an extension of WordPress that enhances it.

So what to backup?? here are the important thing
1) the wordpress database
2) the contents of the wp-contents folder and
3) the file wp-config.php

(1) the database - this is the biggie based on Importance. It has all your posts, all the settings for atahualpa, all your user id's, all the data your plugins add. Without it, you are screwed.

A great plugin I use to backup the database is 'wp dbmanager'. I like it because you can schedule backups and have the backup emailed to you.

(2) the wp-config folder contains all the plugins, themes, and uploads you have at your site. Having a periodic backup of this will allow you to recreate the site elsewhere. Use an FTP program to make a new backup after you add a new plugin or upload some new images. You could get away with just backing up your uploads, but then you would have to keep a list of the plugins and themes.... Easier to backup the whole thing.

(3) wp-config.php - it's a small file that has your db login info, helpful incase you need to recover the entire site (say you get hacked)

Recovery is a little harder. While phpMyAdmin indicates it can do imports, it takes up too much time and memory to ever have worked for me. I make sure I can SSH into the server and then I can use the mysql import syntax. This runs extremely fast. Other than that, you use FTP to copy the files and you should be set.

Hope this helps
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  #3  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 03:02 PM
flieg
 
21 posts · Aug 2010
California
Thanks for the quick reply and the useful information that was included therein, but I submit that it demonstrates the need for what I suggested. The problem is that you are so comfortable with all this that you push past things that confuse us newcomers, because to you they are obvious.

To wit:
Quote:
(1) the database - this is the biggie based on Importance. It has all your posts, all the settings for atahualpa, all your user id's, all the data your plugins add. Without it, you are screwed.

A great plugin I use to backup the database is 'wp dbmanager'. I like it because you can schedule backups and have the backup emailed to you.
Great, but where is this database? What is its name?
While the name of the plugin is useful, where might I find it and how might I install it, and why would using it be better than doing an ftp copy of the database?

(2)Your instructions about the contents of the wp-contents folder were closer to what I had in mind, though still a bit on the sketchy side.

(3)Where is wp-config.php? I can understand that it is critical, but where is it located?

For that matter, now that I have looked at the directory tree for my installation using the file-manager on my web-host, what are the folders wp-admin and wp-includes and why are they not as critical as wp-contents?

What I had in mind in my original post was not a search for quick answers for right now, but rather a call to someone in the community, probably one with far less expertise than yourself or Imilesw, to write something that could be useful to many and which could be pointed to when people with the same question come down the pike later. You and he do a great job helping people out, but I rather think you qualify as "experts" (and incredibly helpful), and most of the rest of us aren't even close.

In my imagination, the FAQ/article would include an explanation of the words "use the mysql import syntax." Heck, if I do a couple of backups and restores successfully, I might even give a try at writing it.

Thanks for your attention -- F
  #4  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 04:08 PM
juggledad's Avatar
juggledad
 
21,705 posts · Mar 2009
OSX 10.8.5 WP 3.8.x Atahualpa 3.7.x Safari 6.x Firefox 25 XP
Well all of this is not theme specific, it is WordPress specific.
1) the database is where ever your host has put it. There is no way for me to tell you where it is without having access to your host's tech support guys. They know where they put it. As for it's name -same issue, I have know idea what your host called it. At my host, I can create the databases myself. I have one I test with I called 'frog' and another called atahualpa346 and one called ata353.

You can find the name in the wp-config.php (3) which is in the root folder where wordpress was installed, which again different hosts, and different users place in different places.

as for the plugin, I did give you the name that is why I quoted it.

Now it seems to me that before you start asking questions about the wordpress product on a theme forum, you owe to everyone to do some learning and wordpress.org is a great place to start.

You have taken the first step by asking some questions, now comes your homework, doing some learning. http://codex.wordpress.org/Main_Page is a great place to start so you can learn about the marvelous software. And I'll be the first to admit, I know only a fraction of what wordpress can do.

Glad to have you aboard and happy learning
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  #5  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 04:12 PM
juggledad's Avatar
juggledad
 
21,705 posts · Mar 2009
OSX 10.8.5 WP 3.8.x Atahualpa 3.7.x Safari 6.x Firefox 25 XP
Oh, and one last thing, think about donating to the developer so he will keep improving the theme and that goes for any plugin you use. If you like it and use it, then reward the people that make it all happen.
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  #6  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 07:08 PM
flieg
 
21 posts · Aug 2010
California
Well, I had gone to the codex and found it singularly uninformative in terms of how to do things, and hard to navigate as well. I am working with WordPress for Dummies and not getting that much help out of it.

My particular question had to do with the updating of Atahualpa, so I posted here.

As for donating to a developer -- once I find something that I can actually use to get what I want, I will do so -- I also contribute to Public Radio stations that I like and not those that I don't. So far I am not certain that Atahualpa is going to be the framework I can use, despite the helpful posts that you and lmilesw have given me.
  #7  
Old Aug 26, 2010, 07:20 PM
juggledad's Avatar
juggledad
 
21,705 posts · Mar 2009
OSX 10.8.5 WP 3.8.x Atahualpa 3.7.x Safari 6.x Firefox 25 XP
The theme makes no difference in doing backups. If you are using wordpress, all those steps apply. The database contains all your posts, the folders contain your uploads and they work together.

You are asking for a simple directions, maybe what you need is to hire someone to guide and train you until you have enough knowledge and experience to handle it yourself.

It's kind of like working on a car. I know what needs to be done, but I take it to someone who knows how to do it and I pay him to do it so it gets done right.

Maybe atahualpa isn't the theme for you, but, like I said, backup and recovery still takes all those steps.
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