Sunday was a cold, rainy day. I was sitting in front of the log burner, watching the flames through the glass front and deciding what to do. Being Sunday – I didn’t want to “work” – I like to give myself time-out from “working” – I feel this is something really important to establish when you work from home. It very easy to be “on call” all the waking hours! But hubby was chatting on his forum, the rain was hammering down on the tin roof over the yard and so I picked up my laptop … we don’t have a TV here in Spain. “I’ll just check my e-mails”, I said to myself.
That was FATAL!
The newest e-mail was from my hosting company, iPage, saying “Since you have cancelled your account, your files will be deleted within 24 hours and you will not be able to access them any more”.
I had just signed up with this host in February and paid for 3 years hosting!
In February I went through the hassle of moving my blog to this new host – jumping through all kinds of hoops. I discovered that using some WordPress backup plugins don’t in fact back up all the necessary parts of a blog – the blog being made up of WordPress and its settings AND one or more databases (ever heard the term MySQL? That’s where all you actual posts, comments and so on are stored!) I’d tried all sorts of ways of getting “the whole package” backed up, downloaded and uploaded. So when it was all finally sorted, to be honest, I wasn’t sure what had worked and what hadn’t – I was just grateful that with the help of the support desk at my new hosting company, iPage, it was all sorted! Then, feeling satisfied that all was running smoothly … I forgot all about the need to do a blog back up!
Until my shock on Sunday.
I can tell you – I contacted the online chat support at iPage immediately! I was so grateful they offer 24/7 support! The person I spoke to checked my account and said that when I had, back in February, cancelled the monthly fee for them to backup – this cancellation had been applied to my whole account!
“Why had I cancelled their backup service?” you ask. Well, because when I was reading the features of the backup facility, I came across the sentence …
“Remember … this tool can’t automatically restore SQL databases.”
Now, as I just said – your SQL databases are the heart of your blog and if the backup service couldn’t restore them I couldn’t see the point of paying for it!
Back to Sunday! The support person was able to rescind the cancellation and, hopefully, all is peace and quiet! BUT … I realised that I MUST put in place a process for a regular blog back up. I did some research, typing “how to back up a blog” into the ever faithful Google, and found a load of information about automatic backups – some of them using 2 or 3 plugins to achieve it.
Then I found Dee Ann Rice’s blog post about how to back up a blog manually – AND her post on how to restore your blog if necessary! I followed Dee Ann’s great video for backing up and now feel I have a complete set of all my sites – yes, I’ve got a few because I’m expanding … but more of that later. I haven’t followed her restore instructions but she shows them in a video so I’m pretty sure they work as she shows.
That – I felt – was the answer – seeing as I enjoy the “techie” stuff and like to keep a finger on the pulse of what’s happening. I back up my laptop every week and so all I have to do is add the procedure for blog back up to my “routine”. I even plan to write a little script to do it. I’ll let you have it when it’s done!
To be sure you get it – sign up below – I’ll notify you when it’s ready and in the mean time I’ll be sending you some other useful hints, tips and resources related to computer basics and using the internet for leisure and business.
PS … All this kept me nicely entertained for most of that wet Sunday afternoon… and into the evening. “Time out”? Sadly, no, but very instructional and good to have got it sorted!