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If your website runs on cPanel this how-to will show you how to backup everything—including your database and emails.

Note that you must have sufficient web space on your server to create a backup. Because it backs up your entire hosting package into a single archive file if you are using more than 50% of your disk space, it may not be possible to use this method. Also, this process involves manipulating files directly on your web server. Only do this if you are 100% comfortable with the instructions below as doing it incorrectly could result in deleting files essential to your website.

1. Login to cPanel.

2. Choose Backup Wizard.

3. Click the Backup button.

4. Click the Full Backup button.

5. Leave the Backup Destination as Home Directory, select the radio button directly underneath if it is not selected already and enter your email in the box provided.

6. Click Generate Backup.

7. Wait until you receive a confirmation email (the larger your site the longer it will take).

8. If you have logged out of cPanel of navigated away from the previous page repeat steps 1–4.

9. Click the link to download the backup archive. Keep a copy safe on your computer or other storage device.

Note, don’t worry if you don’t know what a .tar file is or how you open it. The important thing is you have the file as hosting companies can use it to restore your site.

10. Go to cPanel home.

11. Choose File Manager.

12. If prompted go to Home Folder. If not navigate the file structure to find the file you just downloaded. Where this will be will vary from file system to file system but generally it will be at the top of the structure.

13. Select the file you just downloaded and click Delete from the top.

14. Double-check it is the correct file and then click Delete File(s).

Tim Bennett is a web designer and developer. He has a First Class Honours degree in Computing from Leeds Metropolitan University and currently runs his own one-man web design company, Texelate.