Imagine if you can clone a website that needs to be moved or just for backup in just some few seconds? Although you can always do it just by the traditional method of exporting the content via FTP, and then backing up the database, this is annoying to do and could be tricky for a beginner.
Maybe you are looking for a WordPress export plugin? Moving your WordPress website from one hosting provider to another can be an absolute pain in the backside but if you use a WordPress Plugin it can be way much easier! In this article I will show you how to do it by two of the most popular plugins out there!
When is duplicating needed?
Duplicating a site could be great if you
- Creating a backup
- Moving from development on your computer to production server or the other way around
- Migrating to a different provider
- Setting up an online testing environment or staging server
- Using a copy of an existing site for a similar project
In this article I will show you two plugins, WordPress Duplicator and All in One WP Migration, and I will share my own experience with these duplicator plugins.
The benefits of using WordPress Duplicator plugin
First of all I will have a look at WordPress Duplicator plugin which I used earlier. Here are the best reasons why you should test out WordPress Duplicator plugin:
- Move, migrate or clone a WordPress site between domains or hosts with zero downtime
- Pull down a live site to localhost for development
- Bundle up an entire WordPress site for easy reuse or distribution
- Manually backup a WordPress site or parts of a site
- Duplicate a live site to a staging area or vice versa
- Transfer a WordPress site from one host to another
- Perform a full WordPress migration without struggling with messy import/export sql scripts
You can read more about the Duplicator plugin on the official plugin site.
How do you export your entire WordPress site?
Login to your WordPress dashboard, install and activate Duplicator plugin. The very first step is to create a package which contains all the essential file that is required on the new server. Here is how you will do it:
- Simply begin the process by clicking the Create New button.
- The next step is to name this backup anything you like and click the ‘Next‘ button.
- Now it’s time to click the Build button to create the duplicator version.
- Next step is clicking on both the Installer and Archive buttons to download both the files, ‘installer.php’ and ‘backupname.zip’.
- All is set up correctly and you can go to to your own MySQL Databases page at MySQL Databases.
- Awesome, buddy! It’s time to create a new hostname and empty database for the site you’re migrating to.
- Once you create the database, you can visit the new URLs installer.php file.
- Now you need to check the box to accept the terms & notices, afterwards click the ‘Next’ button. On this page, enter your new database log in details and then click the Test Database button. You should see a green ‘Success’ response. Click the Next button. A pop-up displays asking you to confirm if you want to run the installer on this database. Click Yes. At step number 3, you are asked to confirm the URL, Path, and Title of the new install. Click Next. At step number 4, click the Site Login button.
- Log into your new site with the same WordPress user/pass as the old site.
- You’ll see a success message once logged in. Click the button Remove Installation Files. You’ll see several ‘File Removed’ confirmations.
Congratulations! The former WordPress site is now copied and should work fine on the new site URL.
If you have any issues when you are following my step by step instructions, please check out Jackson’s awesome WordPress Duplicator Plugin video here:
The free Duplicator plugin makes it easy to copy and migrate WordPress sites. It’s the best free alternative I could find to BackupBuddy, (aff. link) the extremely popular backup and migration plugin from iThemes.
WP Migration All in One
WordPress Duplicator plugin has become the most popular migration plugin for years, but I actually struggled to migrate some of my sites with it. I was thinking: If I could install a plain WordPress installation on my new domain and then import everything, it would be much easier! And that was when I found WP Migration All in One.
I will show you how exactly step-by step how I was moving my WordPress site to new domain with all in one WP Migration. This is how to copy the WordPress site to a new host.
Main benefits of using WP Migration All in One
I noticed quickly how much easier the WP Migration All in One is to use. The only con is that it is not completely free – if your site is not extremely tiny. That means they have set a limit of 512MB. If your site is bigger than that, you need to pay $60. That’s a one time fee, and you get lifetime updates and support for unlimited domains.
My own experience with WP Migration All in One
I have used WP Migration All in One for backup and migration for more than 10 domains, and I was able to do everything on my own for 9 out of 10 domains. The 10th domain was a site where I had used WordPress for more than 10 years, since 2009, and had some extremely large files (more than 2000MB in total). I was contacting their support, and they optimized the site content and helped me to transfer the site in some few hours. Indeed they had a very good customer service, and my money spent was absolutely worth it.
The step by step WP Migration All in One guide
Using WP Migration All in one is so much easier than using WP Duplicator. The entire process is so simple you just won’t believe it. The first step is to install the free plugin. Just go to the WP plugin search.
- First of all, log in to your existing site’s administration area, if you aren’t already.
- Select “Plugins > Add New” from the left side menu of your WordPress.
- Search for “All in one WP Migration” in the top right hand search field, then click “Install Now” when you find the correct plugin from ServMask. Click “Activate” to turn on the plugin.
- Look for the menu for “All-in-One WP Migration” (it’s under “Tool” in the left sidebar) and select “Export”.
- Click “Export To” and then select the option for “File“.
- After the plugin has run, click the button in the pop-up window to download your file. The file that downloads will end in an extension
.wpress. Important: Don’t change the name of this file! Changing this extension name will cause the migration to fail, so leave it as is.
- Repeat the first steps on your new WordPress installation that’s supported by your new post. (What I’m trying to say, make sure you have the plugin installed on the new site, not only the old one.)
- On your brand new WordPress site, select “Import” under the menu for “All in One WP Migration”.
- Drag the
.wpressfile you downloaded from your original site into the drag and drop window to start the import. (if it doesnt work you can use the backup option instead and transfer the file to the dedicated folder a1… inside of wp-content in cpanel or FTP)
- Wait until the file is uploading and finished, and then click “Continue”. Since this is a new installation, you don’t need to worry about anything being overwritten, it’s just a standard warning!
- Once you receive confirmation that your import has been done, logout of your dashboard, then log back in. Don’t forget, you’ve imported all the data from your old site, which includes your old password.
- On the left side menu, select “Settings > Permalinks”, then click “Save Changes”. It’s indeed unnecessary to edit any of the default permalink structure information.
- That’s it! Congratulations! Check your new site to make sure everything looks correct, I’m sure it will!
That’s all. We hope that this post helped you pick the best WordPress backup plugin for your site. You may also want to see our step by step WordPress security guide for beginners.
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