How to back up your website files

It is an essential requirement that from time to time you make a full back up of your website files and SQL Database. It is quite easy to make one mistake when updating your website content that could ruin the functionality of your website. At least with a backup, you can quickly re-load the files and return to its original state.

Depending on the hosting company you are using, the way in which you can take a back up may differ but here is a general guide.


If your hosting company uses a control panel, log into your account and look for the “File Manager”, this is where all of your website files will be located, usually under a folder called “Public HTML” Some hosting companies provide the opportunity to select all the files and compress into a zip file that can be downloaded and saved onto your desktop. If your hosting company does not offer this feature, you will need to use FTP Software.

You can download a copy of Filezilla free of charge at:

Once you have installed Filezilla, you will need to go back to your hosting control panel and look for FTP Accounts, if not already set up, you can do this quite easily.

Make a note of the:

  • Host Name
  • Username
  • Password

Add these details into Filezilla and click on connect. The website files will load into the right-hand panel and can then be copied over to a folder on your desktop.


Go back to your hosting control panel and look for phpMyAdmin. In the left-hand panel, click on the name of your SQL Database. On the top menu, click on Export. Click on “Custom – display all possible options” and then select compression as Zipped. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “GO”. This will download the SQL Database to your desktop.