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Back up Files using FTP

Posted 10th October, 2018

If you are unable to back up your site using SSH, then any provider should support FTP. FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is the most common way of uploading and download files from websites.

To configure your backups with FTP, you will need:

  • An FTP hostname. This is likely to be your domain name (or sometimes If not, it could be your server name, or your IP address.
  • An FTP username and password. These might be your hosting login details, but you should be able to create additional FTP accounts in your hosting control panel.
  • An FTP path. Most hosts might have this as public_html, but it could also be just /.
  • An FTP port. In almost all cases this is 21, so if you can't find it, try that.

Once you have these, FTP backups can be configured in as follows:

  1. Ensure the desired website is added to your dashboard or that you are delegate on the website. Advanced users: note that you can add multiple versions of a website.
  2. Click the Backups tab under your website.
  3. Under File Backups click Configure Now
  4. Choose FTP as the Connection Type
  5. Enter the details above when prompted.

That's it! Once submitted your File Backup will go to Pending status, and shortly after we will back up your website and update this status to Ok. You will then be able to view the backups we have taken.

Common Errors

The following are common errors that may be causing file backups to fail. We try to give as much detail as possible when failing to connect.

  • IP Address not allowed. This is unlikely, but has been known. You may need to add our IP addresses to a whitelist. Click the help icon in the control panel and we'll get you set up.
  • Hostname not responding. The hostname you entered does not resolve. Perhaps your domain name is not yet live, or it has been mistyped. Try entering the web server name, or IP address of the web server.
  • Username incorrect. Check that you are entering the full FTP username. For example it may be [email protected] rather than just username.
  • Password incorrect
  • Alternate Port. FTP can sometimes be enabled on custom ports, rather than the default port of 21.
  • Path incorrect. Ensure the path to your files are correct and that you are entering the full path. For FTP this is relative - usually files are stored under a folder such as public_html or www. Try just using / or leaving the path blank.

To test your FTP or SFTP credentials, you can download an FTP client such as FileZilla and try the credentials using that application.

Changing Credentials Later

Credentials can be changed at any time. File backups will continue. Please note that if you change the path of a backup, will see all files as changed.

Connection Failures

If we fail to back up your files we will send you an email alert informing you of the connection failure. We will continue to try the connection.