After much anticipation and waiting, BackupBuddy 2.0 is finally here!
For those that don’t know, BackupBuddy is an automated backup solution for WordPress (you can also check out this webinar on how to use BackupBuddy). This release has some major updates and improvements. In this article, I take a look at the new features of BackupBuddy.
The first thing you notice, if you have used BackupBuddy in the past, is a number of new menu items. “Backups” has been changed to “Backup & Restore”. Added to the list are “Malware Scan” and “Server Info”.
This page has been totally overhauled and looks much nicer than in previous versions.
Most importantly, you now have the ability to specify where on your website to store backups. Simply type in the path where you want to store the backups and save the settings.
Backup & Restore
This page has been spruced up visually, and they have added the ability to do MD5 checks on your backup files. This lets you verify that the contents of the file have not changed since their original creation. (Pretty techie, I know.)
Functionally, backups have changed quite a bit in this version. In previous versions, you had to leave the page open while the backup was in progress. If you clicked to another page, the backup would be interrupted. Not anymore. You can simply start the backup and move on to other pages in the WordPress dashboard while the backup continues in the background.
If you do choose to stick around, you will see a detailed play-by-play of what is happening in the backup process. If you are having problems with the backup process, you can watch the progress messages to see where the process fails.
BackupBuddy can now perform a scan of your website to look for common malware. These files are placed on your site by hackers for any number of reasons. The BackupBuddy malware scan can test for the presence of these files and notify you if it finds any. It does not remove the files, however.
The scan software is powered by Sucuri, a web software security company. They offer a cleanup service, should the scan find any malware. Sucuri’s pricing structure is a yearly fee for the service. However, you only need to pay if you wish to use their malware removal services, not to perform the scan itself.
The scan also provides you with a lot of information about your site, such as the links on your site (quickly see if there are links to places you do not recognize), a listing of external javscripts that are used (quickly see if there are unrecognized scripts being loaded), and your domain status with the Google Safe Browsing and Norton Safe Web blacklists.
The Server Info item provides you with detailed information about your webserver: software versions, file permissions, WordPress cron jobs, etc. This is really only useful for website administrators and programmers, and the casual website owner will probably never use it. It is a nice inclusion, however. If you ever need to hire a programmer or webmaster, they will appreciate having all of that information in one place.
The Scheduling page looks essentially the same as previous versions of BackupBuddy, with the exception of the Remote Destination selection. You can now manage your remote destinations (Amazon S3, FTP, email, and Rackspace Cloud) right from the Scheduling page. Previously, you had to use the Settings page to configure your remote desinations, and it is nice to be able to add a destination while you are scheduling the backup. You can also add multiple destinations for one backup.
Also, you now have the ability to edit already existing schedules. In previous versions, you had to delete an existing backup schedule and replace it with a modified version.
Sum it Up
This version of BackupBuddy has a lot of new improvements for the casual user: improved feedback makes it easier to know what is going in the backup process, the addition of Rackspace Cloud as a destination offers more options for offsite backup storage, and the malware scan makes it easy to check your site for security problems. For the technical user, the addition of the Server Info tab is a nice summary of webhost information.
If you already use BackupBuddy, be sure to upgrade to take advantage of the new features. If you don’t, what are you waiting for?
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