How to Manually Backup your Joomla 3 Website

In this tutorial, I'm going to walk you through how to backup your Joomla website the good old way - by doing manual back ups.

The primary reason why I backup my Joomla site is that there are just so many things that can go wrong, such as when I update Joomla or when I install a new extension. Sometimes the only way to move your Joomla site is to make a backup and restore it on a new host.

There are two parts to making a back up of your Joomla 3 site. The first part is that you need to download all of your Joomla files, and the second part is to backup the database.

Step-by-Step Video Tutorial

Part 1: Downloading your Joomla Files

Downloading your Joomla files is fairly straight forward. You can either use an FPT client to transfer your Joomla files and folders from your host to your hard drive. However, this can be very time consuming as there are so many files to move.

The approach that I like to take, which tends to be a lot quicker and just as easy is to zip all of your Joomla files through cPanel, than download your zip files to your computer.

In cPanel > File Manager > public_html > select all files > click the Compress button

Once compressed a Zip file archive will be created of all your files and folders. You can now download it to your hard drive using an FTP client or by using cPanel's File Manager.

Part 2 Backup your Joomla database

In the second part of our tutorial, I'll be backing up our Joomla 3 database using the phpMyAdmin tool located in your cPanel. But before we can backup our database, we need to have three things:
- MySQL database name,
- usernamer
- password

If you don't know this information off hand, you can obtain it by navigating to your configuration.php file in the root of your Joomla directory and record what you see in the following line of code:

public $user = 'user_username';
public $password = 'password';
public $db = 'user_dbname';

Once you have this information recorded, it's time to backup your Joomla database.

In cPanel account > phpMyAdmin (under the Databases section)

and select the database to backup (according to information contained in the configuration.php file).

Next, click the Export tab > and click the Go button.

After you click on the "Go" button, phpMyAdmin will create a backup file with the extension .sql i.e. database.sql. Your back up file can now be downloaded to your local computer.