Backing up WordPress with phpMyAdmin

With a multitude of upgrades released every 30 seconds in the WordPress community, it’s integral that a regular back-up is taken just to be on the safe side. Although there are plugins available which do this for you, I’m a cynical old bugger and don’t trust anything or anyone.

Most hosts supply phpMyAdmin. If you have access to MySQL Databases, chances are you have phpMyAdmin. You will need to find this little tool. If you’re with Site5, go into SiteAdmin and select the option from under MySQL Databases in the left menu. If you’ve got standard cpanel hosting, go into cpanel > MySQL Databases, and phpMyAdmin is linked near the bottom.

Once your phpMyAdmin window is open, find your WordPress blog in the menu on the left hand side. This may be in a list or a drop-down menu, but will be in there. Usually named username_xxx, where username is the name you use to log into cpanel/SiteAdmin and xxx is the name of the database. Once selected, the main database page should load. Choose Export from the menu across the top:

export db

When the Export page has loaded, make sure all tables are selected:

tables highlighted

Then, near the bottom of the page tick ‘Save as File’ > zipped option. When you’re ready, click Go. Save the file to your computer, and tada: one database back-up.


  1. thanks i always wonders how to do this ………. also how to movie it to my root folder from the sub folder that its in ………….. yah i am still a dumb n00b with wordpress :(

  2. Got a request for you. I had figured out this way to back things up a while back (I don’t trust plugins either), and thankfully nothing’s ever gone wrong because I don’t know how to USE this backup in case of something messing up. Could you enlighten us? God, I feel dumb!

  3. Jem

    28 Apr at 8:44 pm

    I plan to post that one next Meli – probably tomorrow :)

  4. … there are ways other than this to backup a database? :O

  5. I use the auto tool cPanel has, because I’m too lazy :P

  6. Thanks. I need to do this.

  7. @ Chien: You’re not alone! :P

  8. Or you could be lazy like me and use the WordPress Database Backup plugin ;D

  9. I just lost the contents of my database during the latest upgrade, and phpMyAdmin wouldn’t let me restore from the backup WordPress Database Backup gave me. I don’t know if it would have let me restore from a phpMyAdmin backup (it just kept whinging about “Rails application failed to start properly”), but MAYBE it would have stood a better chance of working!

  10. For me it depends: most of the time I use the plugin, but sometimes when I get really paranoid I also use phpMyAdmin for Beth’s site.

    I’m also interested in the tutorial on how to use it. While I do actually use it, I feel I always make too many changes. :P ( your “sticks out tongue” smiley looks weird).

  11. yah i love tryign to find new tuts on wordpress one day i have it down ……… but if you could for me make a tut on how to move stuff to the root folder and so on from a subfolder :)

  12. I second Hannah hehe I use its automatic backup and send those zip files in another gmail account :P

  13. pssh phpmyadmin.
    Just ssh in and mysqldump that sucker :P

  14. what I need to find is a way to set up a cronjob to do this autmatically. If of course such a thing is possible! *fingers crossed it is!*

  15. I use a plugin that emails me a database back up once a week. No hassle, no worries.

    I’ll go find the link for it if anyone’s interested.

  16. I’ve been doing this since day one, but it’s good to show everyone else as well. Like you, I don’t trust other peoples’ tools unless I pour over them with my own eyes (but I still don’t use tools). It’s just as easy to do it this way. :)

  17. Oh my, Jem. Thank you so much for this. I kept trying to figure this out, & never could make it work. Thanks so much.

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