In the first part of this series, we discussed what to consider when preparing a website survival plan, just in case a disaster were to strike.
In this part, we’ll cover the minimum that you need to backup as part of that preparation.
Well, the obvious would be your web pages. Without any web pages, you won’t have a web site. How often you make backups of your web pages depends on how often you update them. It is ideal to always have a copy of the latest draft.
Web site files
These are files that are related to your web site but are not published on the site. Including your keywords, your articles, non web ready images, site templates.
If you use any scripts on your site, make sure you have a backup copy of the script. Most companies now allow you to re-download your scripts at any time but it’s still good practice to make backups. More importantly, make sure you backup any customizations that you have done for your scripts because there will not be available for download as it is not part of the original script.
Most scripts nowadays, make use of a database to store data from your site. Your scripts will be worthless without these data to populate them. So, have handy backups of databases as well. If you’re using a cPanel based web host, you can easily make backups of any MySQL databases that you have set up.
Although your mailing list is not directly a part of your web site, it IS one of the most important thing to backup. Make constant backups of who’s on your list and who has chosen to unsubscribe. If you’re using a mailing list service provider, they should have a handy way to export your list so you keep a copy on your computer or other storage methods.
You should also keep a copy of access details to your cpanel, your main hosting account, your email accounts and any other services you use to keep your web site running.
There you go. This is the least you should do. So, if disaster comes your way, you can get back up and running in minimal time.