Backup Basics for a Joomla! Web Site (2023)

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(Video) Joomla - Website Backup

Always keep a recent backup of your site. Accidents happen, but there are many other reasons to have your backup files handy before the need arises. N.B. backups should not be used to restore a hacked site because the hack could have been on the site for some time could have been backed up with the site.

The causes of data loss are many. Joomla sites can be compromised by malicious attackers if the site administrator has not paid attention to security or in cases when hackers bypass the best security. Joomla! is designed for teamwork, and even good editors can make an error that harms the site.

There are many reasons website administrators need to revert the site to a previous working state.

Practice both backup and restore. Nobody should wait for an emergency to test their skills and tools for dealing with an emergency. Very often people create a backup of something that is empty or corrupted and discover that none of their critical data was backed up. Nobody likes a ship that sinks with empty lifeboats. It's also wise to practice getting people out of the lifeboats and into a new working system.

Having a backup is not just about accidents; a person well versed in backup can help with safe development of new features. Backup and restore help web managers create a staging website where new changes can be practiced without risking the production website. The clone can be created on a local machine acting as a test server or any other folder or web hosting account supporting the SQL and PHP versions used by the site you've backed up.

It's easy for anyone to mix up their live site and staging site, so change the color of your staging site template to remind developers that the staging site is not live to the public.


(Video) How to Backup a Joomla Site with Akeeba Backup - A How to Backup Up a Joomla Website Tutorial
  • 1 Back Up a Joomla Website Using Akeeba (Common method)
  • 2 Backup Two-Part Method
    • 2.1 Database Backup
    • 2.2 File System Backup
  • 3 More Backup Documentation
  • 4 Special Notes
    • 4.1 Two Factor Authentication (2FA)

Back Up a Joomla Website Using Akeeba (Common method)

This is the preferred method using the Akeeba Backup Extension.

  • Akeeba Backup produces a .jpa file.
  • The compressed .jpa file contains all the Website's files and the content of the database.
  • The .jpa file also includes an installer.
  • Akeeba's kickstart.php unpacks the .jpa file.
  • You then run the installer and install your site like a Joomla install.
  • The installer changes the configuration for restoring to a different location and prompts for the new database details.

You can download the Akeeba Backup extension from the Joomla extension directory. There is a link to full instructions there as well.

Backup Two-Part Method

There are two parts to a complete back up of your Joomla site. They are:

  1. The database information, most often found in your MySQL database.
  2. The files and folders on your website, as hosted on most static HTML websites.

If you do not backup your files and database, your backup is incomplete.

Database Backup

One of the first steps to backup your Joomla site is to close the site to the public, backup the files and then re-open the site. The steps from the phpMyAdmin documentation omit this much needed operation. Go to Joomla AdministratorGlobal ConfigurationSite tab, set Site Offline = 'Yes.

This will then change the configuration.php file in the root of your Joomla website.

An administrator will need to use your hosting control panel to view that file or use FTP to download and view the file. Inside the configuration.php file you can find the name of your database that will need backing up.

Look for the line with code resembling var $db = 'x1234'; or public $db = 'x1234'; Where x1234 is the name of your database.

(Video) How to backup your Joomla website effective and complete

Using the logon information for your server or hosting company open the phpMyAdmin tool. Open the database and look for the table named users and then click the icon to view the data in that table.

You should see the names of staff who have accounts on your Joomla site. This view provides you the confidence that you are about to backup the correct database.

Click the export tab, then Go.

Your browser will download your database into an SQL file.

Find where you browser put that file, then move the file to a much more secure drive or location.

Server SQL databases can be backed up without phpMyAdmin and instead using the SQL command line. If you know how to do that, you're most likely not in need of this documentation.

It is recommended that you back up the database at least twice per week or even everyday (and more) if you have an active site.

File System Backup

Continue with your site offline, see above. Your Joomla folder and files can be backed up by downloading them with an FTP utility or using the file manager of your web hosting company. Both of these file options work, neither is better.

(Video) Joomla Tutorial: How to Backup Your Website

FTP tools move thousands of Joomla files and use more time. The FTP process can be slow and interrupted. Most hosting companies provide a control panel for taking thousands of files in one folder and then creating a zip file very quickly.

This means your site is offline for a shorter amount of time and you have only one zip file. Go to your hosting control panel and look for their file manager icon.

If you use your hosting file manager, practice using that interface to select your server folder and creating a zip file. Download the zip file locally and then expand it locally to to see what files are inside that zip file. This option also let's you expand the same zip file for restoration to a staging site.

Backing up the Joomla files with FTP is no different than backing up a static HTML website. Download all the files and folders that exist in the main Joomla directory. The downloaded location is a folder on your local computer. Be sure that the file and directory structure remains the same as it is in the live site. When you restore the files, you will use the FTP utility to upload the files to a new server.

As soon as you've downloaded your files, via zip or FTP, change your site to be online.

More Backup Documentation

Most administrators of a Joomla website have access to their MySQL data using the GUI interface called phpMyAdmin, see How can I backup my database or table? for more information.

There are several automated backup extensions for Joomla! located in the Joomla! Extensions Directory. Here is a link for Joomla! Backup Extensions.

When servers are hosted in the same building as the staff, the web administrators should make extra care to store the backup copies of the database and files in a different building. Fire, theft, water or other damage often wipes out the live website and backups. On a regular basis the web administrators should burn both the database and files to a CD or save to an external hard drive off site.

(Video) How to Backup Joomla Website - Nate Woodbury

Special Notes

Two Factor Authentication (2FA)

If you use two factor authentication (available since Aug 2014) and you are locked out of your site, you can rename the folder plugins/twofactorauth to twofactorauth.BAK and log in to your site's back-end. Then disable all plugins under the twofactorauth group. Finally, rename the plugins/twofactorauth.BAK folder of your site to twofactorauth.

  • See also the Two Factor Authentication tutorial.


How do I create a backup in Joomla? ›

Select the folder and click on Archive in the top part of the page.
  1. Now, add a name for your archive and press Confirm. ...
  2. Once you have created the archive of your files you can download it either through an FTP client or navigate to the file using a regular browser to download it on your hard drive. ...
  3. Backup your Joomla!

How do I backup and restore my Joomla site? ›

How to restore a website from full backup
  1. Login to hosting control panel, open File Manager, go to the root of your Joomla installation.
  2. Press Upload button and upload zip archive that you have backed up before. ...
  3. On this step, you should open configuration. ...
  4. Next, you should restore the backed up database.
Jan 15, 2018

How do I backup my Joomla 4 website? ›

Click the File Manager tool within cPanel.
  1. Go to the root folder of your Joomla website and select all files and folders.
  2. Click the “Compress” tool in the top admin bar of File Manager.
  3. Choose “Zip Archive” in as the Compression Type.
  4. Scroll down in the Compression window and put in a name for the file.

Where are Joomla backups stored? ›

If you haven't touched the Configuration yet, the default backup output directory is under your web site's root: Akeeba Backup for Joomla!: administrator/components/com_akeeba/backup. Akeeba Backup for WordPress: wp-content/plugins/akeebabackupwp/app/backups. Akeeba Solo: backups.

How do I save a Joomla site? ›

Exporting a Copy of the Database to Your Computer[edit]
  1. Login to the database that you want to duplicate using phpMyAdmin.
  2. Click the database name on the left side of the page.
  3. Select the Export tab.
  4. Select the Save as file option.
  5. Click Go.
Nov 8, 2022

Where are Joomla pages stored? ›

In Joomla!, the meta data and the contents are stored in the MySQL database. The table where the articles are stored is table jos_content. In addition, the sections and categories are stored in tables jos_sections and jos_categories.

Where are website backups stored? ›

A local website backup means that files are stored on servers at your physical location or on an external hard drive. Local backups are also normally off-site, as long as the same device storing the backup does not host your website.

How do I access the backend of a Joomla website? ›

Access Joomla admin login page by typing in your website address followed by “/administrator.” Input your username and password. Once you entered your credentials, click the “Log in” button to continue.

What is the backend of Joomla? ›

Basically, Joomla's backend is used to manage the functionality and content of the website. Joomla's backend is simple to install and use. Joomla backend has different types of free plugins, so we can manage all the content and functionality of the website which we are going to publish.

Where is the cache in Joomla? ›

Go to Administrator → System → Global Configuration → System tab and within Cache Settings, set System Cache to ON – Conservative caching.

How safe is Joomla? ›

Even though Joomla is a pretty secure CMS, it is still very widely used, which means it is always going to be at risk of being attacked or hacked. You can never prevent security breaches all the time, the best thing you can do is implement the best security practices to protect yourself.

How do I add a database to my Joomla site? ›

  1. 1 MySQL DB Wizard. 1.1 Creating a Database. 1.2 Creating a Database User and User password. 1.3 Set the User Privileges. 1.4 Finishing Up.
  2. 2 MariaDB using phpMyAdmin XAMPP on Localhost. 2.1 Create a new database user using phpMyAdmin XAMPP on Localhost. 2.2 Create a new database using phpMyAdmin XAMPP on Localhost.
Nov 16, 2021

What are 2 database backup strategies? ›

9 Must-Haves Your Database Backup Strategy Needs
  • Onsite backups. Creating an onsite backup of your database can get you back to work quickly if your server crashes. ...
  • Storage of older backups. ...
  • Offsite backup. ...
  • Data center standards. ...
  • Data transmission controls. ...
  • Backup schedule. ...
  • Automatic cloud backup. ...
  • Quick and simple restore.

What is the easiest database to create? ›

Simple Database Software Programs: List
  • Database Oasis. Database Oasis is a popular solution that allows you to create and custom databases in minutes. ...
  • Amazon SimpleDB. Another super popular solid but simple database software solution. ...
  • Apache OpenOffice Base. ...
  • Basemaster. ...
  • Knack. ...
  • Sesame Database Manager. ...
  • ...
  • Pakker.

How do I backup my whole database? ›

Right-click the database that you wish to backup, point to Tasks, and then select Back Up.... In the Back Up Database dialog box, the database that you selected appears in the drop-down list (which you can change to any other database on the server).

What is the structure of a Joomla site? ›

Basically we have these folders: root,administrator,cache, components, images, includes, installation, language, libraries, logs, media, modules, plugins, templates, tmp. Root: When you first place the Joomla package on your hosting the root directory contains an index. php file that will run the Joomla installer.

Is Joomla a hosting site? ›

Packed with performance updates and custom configuration, Joomla hosting aims to provide the perfect setup for Joomla based websites. Focus on the quality and content of your web pages, while we take care of the server uptime, updates, and improvements. Get the most out of Joomla CMS with Hostinger.

What kind of website is Joomla? ›

Joomla! is a free and open-source content management system (CMS) for publishing web content. Over the years Joomla! has won several awards. It is built on a model–view–controller web application framework that can be used independently of the CMS that allows you to build powerful online applications.

How do I backup my whole website? ›

How to Download an Entire Website With WebCopy
  1. Install and launch the app.
  2. Navigate to File > New to create a new project.
  3. Type the URL into the Website field.
  4. Change the Save folder field to where you want the site saved.
  5. Play around with Project > Rules… (learn more about WebCopy Rules).

How often should I backup my website? ›

You can't predict when a hard drive or hosting failure might occur, or whether an update to one of your plugins will result in a conflict with another. The bottom line is that all websites should be backed up at least daily, and active sites on an hourly or instantaneous basis.

Do you need to backup a website? ›

Why You Need to Backup Your Site. Backing up your site is the only way to ensure you're protected from losing all the work you've put into it. And losing your website can have big consequences. If you have to build a new website from scratch, you lose the time and cost involved in creating an all new site.

Which is better Joomla or WordPress? ›

WordPress is relatively easy to use and most users will be acclimated within just a few minutes. However, the advanced features will take much longer to master. Joomla's primary focus is on more advanced technical user, so it has a larger learning curve.

Where are Joomla passwords stored? ›

The password is stored in the database, in the jos_users table. You cannot read & use it, because it's encrypted with a technique called MD5.

How do I run a Joomla site locally? ›

How to install Joomla on a web server step-by-step
  1. Step 1: Downloading Joomla software. ...
  2. Step 2: Upload Joomla files using FTP client. ...
  3. Step 3: Set up database. ...
  4. Step 4: Start the Joomla installation. ...
  5. Step 5: Set up Joomla login info and database connection. ...
  6. Step 6: Log into the administrator area.
Oct 27, 2022

Does Joomla have a database? ›

A Joomla site is made up of a single database and a large number of files/directories. It's in this database that Joomla stores most of its data: from article content to menu items, from usernames to extension settings. In this article we'll explain how to access the Joomla database using the tool phpMyAdmin.

Is Joomla obsolete? ›

While Joomla is still second place and not going away anytime soon, there's something to be said for picking a growing content management system when you're looking towards the future.

Do people still use Joomla? ›

Downloaded more than 50 million times already, Joomla has become one of the most commonly used CMS over the past 6 years. It is currently the second most popular CMS hosting solution after WordPress.

Can I transfer from Joomla to WordPress? ›

Go to Tools, click on Import, and then select Joomla (FG) from the left navigation menu in the WordPress Dashboard, go to Tools, click on Import, then choose Joomla (FG). This page is where the Joomla database settings ⤵ need to be added to begin the import.

Can you sell on Joomla? ›

If you consider using Joomla as your site platform or already have a website created on this content management system, you can easily add an e-commerce store to your site and start selling online. All you need to do is create an Ecwid store and follow the below instructions to add it to your site.

How do I access files in Joomla? ›

Using FTP or whatever control panel go to the Joomla folder, look for a folder called templates - it should be one of the folders in there. To check what the name of the current template is, go to the admin panel and look in the template menu.

What code does Joomla use? ›

Joomla is written in Hypertext Preprocessor (PHP), uses object-oriented programming techniques and software design patterns, and stores data in a Structured Query Language (MySQL) database.

How do I make a backup file? ›

How to make a backup copy of a file or folder
  1. Open Windows Explorer.
  2. Locate the file to be edited or deleted.
  3. Click on the file to select it. ...
  4. Select Edit, Copy from the menu bar.
  5. Browse to the location to place the backup copy of the file. ...
  6. Select Edit, Paste from the menu bar.

How do I create a data backup? ›

Using a combination of the following strategies, you can start to create a safe and secure way to prevent data loss.
  1. Use an External Hard Drive. ...
  2. Use a USB Flash Drive. ...
  3. Use Optical Media. ...
  4. Use Cloud Storage. ...
  5. Use an Online Backup Service. ...
  6. Invest in a Network Attached Storage (NAS) Device.

How do I create a backup? ›

Back up your PC with File History

Select Start​ > Settings > Update & Security > Backup > Add a drive , and then choose an external drive or network location for your backups.

How do I create a backup document? ›

How to Create Backups of Documents in Word
  1. Open your Word, click the "File" tab and select "Options".
  2. Select "Word Option" and click "Advanced".
  3. On the right pane, Find Save and tick "Always create backup copy" beneath it.
  4. Then, click "OK" to save the changes.
Feb 22, 2023

What are the 3 2 1 rule for files backup? ›

The 3-2-1 Rule, as I like to explain it, states the following: There should be 3 copies of data. On 2 different media. With 1 copy being off-site.

What are examples of backup files? ›

Some examples are word processing documents, spreadsheets, databases (for financial data), customer data, and personal files such as pictures, music files, emails, etc.

What type of file should be backup? ›

So how to identify which files are important and where do we find them? As a rule of thumb, files created by you are the type of files you should backup. System files, Windows operating system folder, installed programs, and temporary files are files that are not required for backup.

What are 4 types of backups? ›

The most common backup types are a full backup, incremental backup and differential backup. Other backup types include synthetic full backups and mirroring.

What are the three strategies of backups? ›

There are three different types of backup processes that can be used to protect your files: full, incremental, and differential.

What are the three data backup methods? ›

There are mainly three types of backup: full, differential, and incremental.

How do I transfer everything from my old computer to my new computer? ›

Here are the five most common methods you can try for yourself.
  1. Cloud storage or web data transfers. ...
  2. SSD and HDD drives via SATA cables. ...
  3. Basic cable transfer. ...
  4. Use software to speed up your data transfer. ...
  5. Transfer your data over WiFi or LAN. ...
  6. Using an external storage device or flash drives.
Feb 21, 2019

How do I copy my entire computer to an external hard drive? ›

If external hard drives backup is your preferred option, the process is pretty straightforward.
  1. Connect your external hard drive via your PC's USB port.
  2. Open your Control Panel. ...
  3. Select Save Backup Copies of Your Files with File History, then select System Image Backup.
  4. You'll then be prompted to create a system image.

What should I backup before formatting my computer? ›

The following are some of the things that you must do before reformatting your device.
  1. Save your movies, music, and documents. ...
  2. Create a copy of your drivers. ...
  3. Get a list of the software installed on your PC. ...
  4. Make a copy of your browser settings. ...
  5. Back up your mail client. ...
  6. Save your downloads in progress.

Does a backup copy everything? ›

A backup contains not only all the data, but also the system registry files, application configuration files, and all other hidden, invisible, and protected files. These cannot be copied manually.

Does Excel create backup files? ›

Excel has its own backup feature that automatically saves your documents at regular intervals while you work. However, you need to enable this feature: To do this, go to the “File” tab and click on “Options”. In the next window, go to the “Save” section and check the “Save AutoRecover information every...” box.

How do I create a backup copy of a database? ›

Back up databases
  1. Open the database you want to back up.
  2. Select File > Save As.
  3. Under File Types, select Save Database As.
  4. Under Advanced, select Back Up Database and then select Save As. If you like, change the backup file name. ...
  5. Select the file type for the backup database, and then select Save.


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