Backups - Best Practices

My site is about to go live, finally, and I'm working through how to backup my database and files. Could someone who is running a medium to large multisite install please advise how often someone should backup the database and site files. I'm thinking database daily and site files weekly.

Also, I would really prefer to keep my backups on my local machine but I've read in several posts here that cPanel backups can choke once your db or file sizes get too big. Can someone who is keeping their backups on their local machine advise how they are handling the process.



  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    Could have sworn we had a lengthy thread about backups a couple of months ago but I can;t find it right off.

    For our large social sites (ie wpmu, elgg, phpbb, etc) we actually run them with multiple accounts. The main hosting account contains the install files. There's also a second hosting account that only contains the databases. And if needbe, there's a third for uploads. Now we're running Direct Admin which whenever it needs to do something, it drops down to the comment line and runs a script from there. Cpanel tries to do all of it;s work via php from the command line (At least that's how I understand it) so you run into the size limit problems. Whenever we want to do a backup, we just do a complete account backup of each account. That way you get smaller chunks instead of just one large backup. Less stress for the server as well.

    Give this a read on how to do backups:

    As a host, we do individual account backups every other day. We do server backups on the off day. Currently the backup servers are located once in each rack in the bottom slots (They're 3Us.) where the server is +2 from the rack it;s assigned to. Rack 1's backup is in rack 3. Rack's two is in rack 4, etc. We're currently looking for a European rack provider though as one of my clients asked for off continent DNS and that makes sense to put up a rack for Offsite DNS and backups.

    What you've got planned there sounds fine to me. Either store it locally or get yourself a cheap external hard drive and save it to that.

    Hope this helps,

    edit: I added the Concept tag to this thread. I;ve been using it for these theory questions if you want to skim them to see if you can find anything else of interest.

    reedit: This wasn;t the thread I was thinking of but I'll throw up a link:

  • drmike
    • DEV MAN’s Mascot

    I'm actually against incremental backups. If one gets screwed up, they all do afterwards. If you go that route, just do complete backups on occasion as well. That's why we do the server backups in addition to the individual account backups.

    Also double check on occasion that the backups are working. Or at least complete. We've had backups done in the back where the files within the zips are empty.

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