Restoring back ups to Joomla

Back ups for the web site

There are three ways for back up.

Firstly there is a system on the SiteGround admin system. This is a manual backup that I do from time to time. The files are stored on the SiteGround system and cannot be accessed. If there is a need to restore the files, this is done easily from the SiteGround admin system called cPanel. There are instructions and help pages there. This is the first preference for restoring the web site after and failure as it is very easy.

Secondly there is a Joomla system called Akeeba. This is managed from the Joomla admin page. Backup are done manually by me and are stored in the first instance on the web server. I do occasionally download them and this is what is included in the backup package. Restoring is possible but it is complicated and only a last resort. Instructions  are attached below. Not for the feint hearted. SiteGround would do it for you for a fee. The backup files are .jpa files. These are zip type files and they can be opened with special software called Akeeba extract wizard.

Thirdly, SiteGround hold system backups and they can be asked to restore.

This is taken from an email from John Slee who developed and set up the web site.

These are instructions for restoring Akeeba backup file of the .jpa type in 2010. Please check on Joomla web site for uptodate instructions. In the event of problem, ask the ISP to assist.

If all else fails SiteGround will restore your database (and folders?) as they were before the “accident”, for a fee.

Having said that, as long as you have a working backup, it’s worth getting to know how the akeeba backup/restore works as it seems you get plenty of practice with this “simple migrate”!

  • it’s important to previously ftp the jpa files from the server to your computer using binary transfer, so that you have a fall-back akeeba backup
  • A joomla programme called kickstart.php restores a jpa file in the sub folder that they are placed. Afterwards they are deleted in the cleanup so it’s essential to have a copy of the backup. I created a /public_html/backup/ folder to hold any backups in and kept a spare copy of kickstart.php there. That way I haven’t got to use ftp to upload each time.
  • The site backup files .jpa are stored in public_html/administrator/components/akeeba/backup and can be moved for restoring or storage.
  • The best idea is to do a dummy restore a copy of the site into an empty sub-folder (e.g. /public_html/sub/) and then test works. That way you know you have a working backup.
  • the kickstart.php restore must be done into a folder without existing joomla folders – otherwise the fact that there may be unused joomla from previous versions around screws the system. So administrator, modules, plugins, components and any other folders in /public_html that hold stuff related to joomlaxx must go before you run kickstart.php to unpack and restore into /public_html/ eventually. Just don’t delete the public_html/backup/ folder storing the backups!
  • These were the instructions I worked out, changed to work hopefully for you:
    • Create a new database using Heart’s MySQLAdmin -> Create a MySQL Database with Username (e.g. Nj25 – keep it short or it starts adding suffixes) and your Password. Note that the Username, which is also the database name, will have a prefix (e.g. Cl48-). You will need to use the whole username/database name, including the prefix.
    • Copy the site backup files .jpa, etc from /public_html/backup/ into the /public_html/sub/ folder

    • Copy kickstart.php from /public_html/bkp/ into the /public_html/sub/ folder

    • Browse to

    • Click ESC to close warning list.

    • Change from default method hybrid to direct.

    • Click Start to begin unpack.

    • Click “Run the Installer” and ANGIE loads and runs Pre-installation Check.

    • Click Next to proceed to Restoration of Sites Main Database.

    • Change User name, Database name & password to your new username, password and new Database name; Click Next to start database restoration.

    • Click on Next Step. Set Cookie domain to and Cookie path to /sub and Click on Next.

    • The Finished Page. As your using Kickstart you just need to close the browser tab.

    • In original Kickstart Window, 6.Restoration and Cleanup, click Clean Up.

    • Click on Visit your Site’s Front End and Visit your Site’s Back End to check restore OK.

    • There are pages of advice on the Akeeba web site.