[Snapshot Pro] What is the difference between Snapshots and Managed Backups?

Hi there,

Can someone possibly explain the difference between Snapshots and Managed Backups? I have seen that other people have searched this but I can't find a definitive answer. I have just initiated both but are both necessary?

Thanks so much,


  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hi Zak

    I hope you're having a nice day!

    Having both "snapshots" and "managed backups" running for sure gives you a better level of "backup security" in that sense that you do have two (or more, depending on the configuration) backups of your site at any moment instead of one. But it's not necessary to keep them both running and it's entirely up to you.

    The difference between these two kinds of backups is quite significant, so let me explain that for you :slight_smile:


    This is what I'd call "the most classic" kind of backup. You select what parts of the site should be backed up (e.g. everything or just database or database and media library and so on), setup a schedule and decide where that backup should be stored. It can be stored locally or in one of the "Destinations" (see "Destinations" page in Snapshot settings) which can be e.g. some FTP location, your Dropbox or Google Drive account or Amazon S3.

    It's then fully configurable and "flexible".

    Managed backups

    It's a bit different. In this case it's always a full backup (so you cannot decide whether you want to backup e.g. only plugins folder or media library) and also the important part is a storage location: such backup is always uploaded to our secure (it's fully encrypted as well) cloud where you have 10GB of backup storage space assigned to your WPMU DEV account (that's free but you can buy more space if you need of course).

    The only thing you need to do is to enabled managed backup and set schedule so it's more of "set and forget". The important part is also that it's stored outside of your site in a secure location and we take care of the backup security.

    Another important thing about managed backup is that in case you lost entire site it's easy to restore it from scratch with just a few clicks - without a need to install fresh WordPress, install Snapshot Pro plugin back etc.

    In case of Multisite WP install there's also yet another difference: "snapshots" are always "per site" (so you cannot backup entire multisite in "one go" - you need separate snapshots to be created per each site of the Multisite) while "managed backup" always makes a backup of entire Multisite "in one go".

    I hope that explains it better but if you have any additional questions, don't hesitate to ask, please.

    Kind regards,

  • Zak

    Hi Adam,

    Thanks for your detailed explanation, yes that is super helpful. Apart from the Multisite backup I can't see any downside to using Snapshots only? What do you think? It says I can still schedule for every day. I like the ability to go to my premium Dropbox so I don't have to pay for extra storage across several sites (I may look into Multisite later).

    Can I still restore the site if Wordpress crashes completely? i.e. goes to the white screen.
    I also need to be able to migrate the main site to a backup site if the main site goes down, is this possible with Snapshots? Or would I use Cloner for this?

    Thanks Adam, I appreciate your patience!


  • Adam Czajczyk

    HI Zak

    I like to use Managed Backup on my own personal site, mostly due to the fact that I do not need to backup only "parts" of the site (I just need entire site to be backed up) and to the fact that it goes to an outside, well secured storage. That's my personal preference though :slight_smile:

    I like the ability to go to my premium Dropbox so I don't have to pay for extra storage across several sites

    The 10GB of space is actually already available for you in our cloud, without any additional payments. Backups are rotated so to use that entire space usually takes either a very huge site or just lots of sites :slight_smile:

    Anyway, I can see benefits of both solutions - snapshots and managed backups - but, like I said, it's not necessary to use them both. The plugin is more like "two in one tool" where you can choose which of the tools suits your needs better (or if you want to use both of them at the time) :slight_smile:

    Can I still restore the site if Wordpress crashes completely?

    Yes, as long as you have a full backup (not just selected resources) of the site, you can. If you do have access to the site's back-end and Snapshot, you just use "restore" option there. If the site is lost/has crashed completely it might take some more steps tho: you might need to install a fresh WordPress first, then install Snapshot Pro plugin there and import backup file into it but from that point it would let you restore entire site as it was before (at the moment of taking backup).

    I also need to be able to migrate the main site to a backup site if the main site goes down, is this possible with Snapshots? Or would I use Cloner for this?

    Snapshot plugin wasn't actually created for any sort of "migration". It can be used for that but please note that it's "at your own risk". I know of quite a lot of cases when it was used like this and it worked but there's still a chance that it might also fail and since it wasn't created for this, we cannot guarantee that it will work.

    As for Cloner. If you mean our Cloner plugin , that is only for Multisite so it can clone one sub-site of a multisite into either another existing sub-site of the same Multisite install or to a new sub-site there.

    However, we're working on another tool dedicated to site migration so you might want to keep an eye on our roadmap here (at the "Shipper" section):


    Best regards,

  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hi Zak

    It might take some time for the backup to be uploaded to the remote destination (such as Dropbox) so you might want to give it a bit more time. However, if you go to "Snapshot -> Snapshots" page and then click on your snapshot name, it should show you a nice "Snapshot Info" summary which would tell you about when the last run happened and if it is already uploaded (the "Status" field). There are also buttons to view/download logs there.

    I think you might want to check these things first and if it says that the status is "uploaded", yet there's no file on a dropbox account, let me know please. In that case I will want to take a closer look at the configuration so make sure that you also enable support access to the site for me. To do this, please go to the "WPMU DEV -> Support" page in your site's back-end and click on "Grant support access" button there, then let me know here when it's active. I would then check the site to see what is happening and how to fix that.

    Best regards,

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