Download your site backups automatically

On April 24, 2012, in Technical, by Tonny Fusein

Tonny FuseinThis article will discuss the general topic of creating an automated backup of your site. It is not a tutorial or step by step instructions.

DiscountASP.NET does not currently provide an interface such as a file manager to backup site contents and download them to your local computer. Most customers have backups of their site, but if you don’t have a backup of your site – that could potentially be disastrous if your site were compromised for example.

“So how do I download a backup automatically? I don’t want to manually FTP every day.”

.NET framework comes with a system.net class that has capability of initiating an FTP session. It can determine the file size and download files to your local computer. There are many articles and guides available out there, and if you can  create the function with ASP.NET, you can pair it with the task scheduler (in the DiscountASP.NET Control Panel) to call the page at a certain time of day or use a .NET timer to initiate the page call to initiate the actual backup automation procedure.

“But I’m not a coder, so how do I pull down my files automatically?”

Enter FTP automation software.

There are tons of these programs available, ranging from free to very expensive. I have tested some of them and the one that stood out the most was ScriptFTP. It is easy to use, dependable and it won’t cost you an arm and a leg.

After downloading and installing, simply create a script file (upload, download, sync, etc) and run it from the application. The main selling point for this software is the internal scheduler feature that is capable of running your custom ftp script at certain intervals. You can try ScriptFTP free for 30 days, but after that, this application worth every penny of the $29.95 price.

Finally, with the recent hype surrounding cloud, many of the big boys are offering free cloud storage solutions (iCloud, Google Docs, Microsoft Skydrive, etc.). In fact, Microsoft is offering free 7gb storage on Skydrive. We can incorporate this with the application’s upload capability to push the files to cloud storage after successful download so now you have a site backup available anytime, anywhere.

p.s.

I’m not related to the developers of this software in any way. It’s just a great tool that I wanted to tell you about.

 

8 Responses to “Download your site backups automatically”

  1. John says:

    What about doing the backups automatically? I can’t see how to do this in the control manager. The only solution I’ve found is to use the backup API which is not that straightforward. Wouldn’t it be much easier it was possible to automate this on a daily/weekly basis through the control panel? We would just need to specify the frequency (and possibly the time of the day).

  2. Takeshi Eto says:

    You can use the SQL backup API to automate making of SQL backups. This blog post is about the website files that you can backup with automated FTP. The SQL backup API and SQL backup tool in the control panel copies the SQL backup to your website disk space, so you can download it using FTP so the FTP tool should work for that download.

  3. John says:

    Hi Takeshi. Thanks for your answer. Yes I understood that the blog post was about downloading the backup files through FTP. I just thought that while we were on the subject of backups… Basically I was just wondering if it would be possible in the future to schedule the SQL backup tool in the control panel (ie to schecule the SQL backup to be done on a daily basis at a given time). That would be very useful as the SQL Backup API involves a bit of programming.

  4. Takeshi Eto says:

    Thanks for the suggestion. We’ll add it to our list of our potential enhancements but we can’t make any promises regarding any feature as we have a huge and growing list of stuff 🙂

    We did post the control panel starter kits in previous blog posts that can be used as an example or starting point for developers.

  5. Eli Obadia says:

    Could you post a sample c# code (snipet) using your APIS showing how to backup a database and ftp the file to a remote place, that will be very useful for all of us.

    Thanks

  6. Eli Obadia says:

    Another question, is there anyway we can schedule SQL backups, that’s a key feature even, withoutthat to program ftp only won’t help, is there anyway we can program daily backups? and then do the ftp to a remote site?

    Thanks,
    Eli

  7. Takeshi Eto says:

    Check out our forum – some customers have posted solutions – http://community.discountasp.net/forumdisplay.php?f=30

    We also have sample code for some tools posted there too.

  8. Louis Schmit says:

    Awesome work over again! I am looking forward for more updates:)

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