restoring from wayback machine question

Hi,
I'm planning to review your article on restoring a site from the internet archives but I have a specific client situation. A client is being hosted on a bluehost VPS and for some reason the backups did not run for about a week. They're back running now but the data and updates (it's an e-commerce site) for that week are missing. Do you feel the wayback machine method can bring back that data?

  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hello Corn,

    I hope you're having a nice day today!

    With any shared hosting I would first turn to hosting provider asking them if they could provide backups. Usually hosting providers do create backups automatically on server level so that would be helpful.

    In case of VPS though, the responsibility for backups usually lays on customer's side so hosting provider may not be able to help you with that. If no backups had been done, it will be quite difficult to recreate them partially and rather impossible to recreate them fully.

    I mean that the WayBack Machine and similar services could be used to "scrap" content but they won't provide you with any additional information/data such as e.g.

    - content relationships
    - site users' data
    - plugins/themes used on the site
    - site configuration

    My point is that if you only need to recover e.g. content of the posts that were published on site, that could be possible using wayback archive or similar service. It would take a bit of work but it's doable (if that content has been copied by them of course). If you need to recover more complex data (e.g. site configuration or user data) that will not help unfortunately.

    If the site is not up and running though and nothing is missing, I'd just make sure that backup is now running and I think it should be fine. If I may sugest something though, it's always good to use more than one tool for backup creation. For example, you could use our Snapshot to keep backups in our cloud and also use it's "Snapshot" feature to push additional backups to your Dropbox or Google Drive account, but at the same time I'd consider setting up some server-side solution that would create additional backup.

    If you have additional questions, let me know please.

    Best regards,
    Adam