In case, you are a WordPress website owner, you may be dependent on the hosting team or the Web Server maintenance personnel for the maintenance, including the routine backing up of your files. You can also rely on a WordPress backup plugin. But, what if, you can do the maintenance and backup of the database and the entire files of your WP Website yourself?
You can backup WordPress websites manually and keep the files in your own compupter too.
Here are the simple steps.

5 Prerequisites before you start backing up your WordPress site:

  • Request your hosting team to share the FTP credentials of your website, in detail.
    Note: Make sure that it contains host username (it may be HomeSite or IP address of your server), password and port number.
  • Request your hosting team to share the database access like phpMyAdmin details. This contains valid URL, username, and password.
  • Uninterrupted internet connection and battery backup! Though it goes without saying, if there is a lack you can avoid lots of headache and confusion.
  • Install FileZilla ( FTP client on your machine.
    Note: Since you are using this for the first time, you can ask them and use the same FTP Client that they are using. Once you become a Ninja, you can choose your own preferred FTP Client.
  • Use any standard web browser, like Firefox, Chrome, Opera, IE to connect phpMyAdmin URL.

The 2 step WP Backup Process.

Let us divide the process into two parts

  • Files backup.
  • Database backup.

Files backup

To do a backup, let us follow the steps below, which enable you to download the files from the server.

Step 01: Open FileZilla or any other FTP Client which you have installed.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 02: Enter the FTP details which you have got from your hosting team as marked in the below area. In a normal case, the set the Transfer Settings -> Transfer mode set as “Default”.
Step 03: After entering the FTP details, click “connect” button as shown in the below screen.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 04: Once you clicked “connect”, if the user credentials are correct, the FTP client will connect to your server and will display the folder structure (as shown in the bottom right pane). Here you will see the files and folders as shown in the below screen shot.

Step 05: In your computer, using the bottom left pane, choose a preferred location where you want the backup files to be put. Use appropriate names for the backup folders. The screen shot below shows a good practice of naming the folders.

Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 06: Select the files in your server as shown below and do a right click. You will get the context menu and option for download. (Important!-> These are the files which hold the content and design and other functionality of your website. Hence be careful not to delete or drag and drop into other folders on the server.)

Here you have two options

  • Download – On clicking this, immediately, it will start to download the files to your local system and to the specific folder which you have just created. (To make sure that it downloads in this specific folder, keep this folder open on the bottom left pane or highlight this folder using a single click)
  • Add files to Queue – This will initiate the files to the Queue process. Once all the files are added to the queue, you have to press the “Process queue” button. Refer the process queue screen below

Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)

Process Queue Screen:

Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Once all your files downloaded, you are now done with the backing up of the files.
Half the job is done – Hooray!

Backing up of WP Database

Step 01: Open your web browser and enter the phpMyAdmin URL which was given by your hosting team.
Step 02: Once the page loads enter the username and password given in the appropriate textbox and press “Go”.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 03:

After successful login, you will be redirected to your website database access area. On this, click on the database name which will be shown on the left-hand side and you will see the appropriate database tables on the right.

Refer the screen below for further clarity.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 04:

Click on the Export tab on the right side (refer the screen shot) which will help you to download the website database to your local machine.

Here, again, you will have two types of options

  • Quick – display only the minimal options. By selecting this option and click the “Go” button, you will immediately get the database, SQL file, for download.
  • Custom – display all the possible options – Here you will get to choose from the list of tables from which you can select the appropriate ones for download or even select the entire list.
    Note: It also contains the options like “Database structure only”, “Database structure and data” or Data only etc.

For now, sine we are beginning, let us choose the ‘Quick’ option.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Step 05:

Finally, click on the “Go” button, and you will get the database SQL from your browser window.

As before, choose the appropriate location to save this file.
Backup WordPress websites manually (2016)
Treat yourself to a cool Falooda, if you are in a hot country or a hot coffee if you are in a cold country… Yes, you have completed the Database Backup too!