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Saturday, 19 August 2017

How to Backup Blogger Pages, Posts, Comments and Template

It is safer and considered best practice to have a duplicate copy of the resources in your blog. Even if not everything, at least important ones like the pages, posts you have drafted or published, comments made by visitors and most importantly the template. To backup your blogger blog isn't complicated or a complex thing to do, and depending on the number of resources you have, the time taken to do this is relatively small. It takes just a few clicks to get everything done. The only challenge here is, you may not know how to do this. So, in this post, I will show you how to backup your blogger pages, posts, comments and templates, and how you can restore or import them back to your blog when needed.

How to backup blogger

Google's Blogspot is a leading brand in the blogging industry. Everything you need to start a blog is rightly provided at no cost. You can start a blog today without needing to cost your budget for purchasing hosting space. Google's hosting service provides that for you. You only have to pay when changing the domain to a custom one, like dot com. But the money isn't paid to google. Instead, it is paid to the company hosting the domain name.

That said and done, let's get into what backup is all about.

For quick access to the sections in this post, use the content links provided below:

Contents



Meaning of Blog Backup

To backup a blog simply means, you make the exact copy of the blog's contents - posts, styles, pictures, videos, audios, scripts, themes and templates - which is saved away from the server where the blog is hosted. You duplicate a blog to ensure that you can always come back to the duplicate when in need of help to restore what you think has been lost.

A backup is like the Insurance indemnity that saves you from total loss during periods in which the insured (your blog) experiences a damage or mishandling which could come in different ways.

Unlike WordPress, blogger does not store images, audios, documents, files and videos in the same location. For example, every picture you upload to your blog is save with Picasa and at the same time, you can't upload a video, file or music. Video and audio files are usually being linked or embedded from another storage location, e.g. YouTube, while files, documents and applications can be uploaded to Google Drive, one Drive or any other cloud storage platform and then shared.

With this, you are less concerned with duplicating and saving separate copy of videos, audios, files and applications. When a backup is carried out on your blogger, only the contents - posts, pages and comments - and the Theme/templates are duplicated. But, this is done in two separate processes. For each of the backups, an XML file format is saved, be it the content or template. The more carbon copies you make, the more XML files you have to save, though you can decide to delete older XML files, while keeping the new ones.

If you are not a programmer conversant with the XML technology, I will advise that you don't bother to edit or change anything in the XML file to avoid the backup being destroyed. It is basically block of codes defined tags and elements which requires knowledge of such web development skills to interpret.

Why should I backup my Blog?

There are quite a few number of reasons why you will have to duplicate and save a copy of your blog's contents and template. Every lands on safety and avoiding regrets, especially when important posts go missing. Common reasons to backup your blog are given as follows:

  • You might be hacked. What will you do, if someone gained access to your blogger account and deleted all the pages and post, and even changes the template and look of your blog to something else? Assuming you have over 100 posts created and written from painstaking research with several back-links, but only to wake up one morning to discover that none of it exist anymore. In such a situation, the helpline is your backup. It will be painful and killing not to have a backup and experience such "calamity". Even if you observe to the n\maximum security requirements to keep your blog safe, still consider a backup. Security, in this age, is broad tagline to talk about. The truth is that the fight between the bad guys and the good guys will continue to generations after generations. Be on the safe side by keeping relevant duplicate copies of your blog.
  • Tampering with your theme. Sometimes we desire to explore and see how things work. In doing this, there is the possibility of, mistakenly, deleting some important lines of codes that can affect the overall functioning of your theme and subsequently the blog. When such occur, all you need to do is to restore a previous version you have saved as backup. Remember that this can only be done when you have the backup. So, before you explore or change anything on your template, consider saving a copy of your theme. That will keep you and your work safe.
  • Installing Malicious Gadget/Widget. Gadgets are used to add more performance quality and ability to a blog. While some of these gadgets are created following acceptable standards, some others are developed otherwise. In some cases, the developer might include codes to destabilise the performance of your blog. When you install a malicious gadget of that type, part or the whole of your blog goes down. How do you plan to come out this? What if it is difficult to trace the block of code that caused the damage? What will you do? The simple answer is to turn to your backup. Therefore, before you install a gadget or widget to your blog, save a copy of both your theme and contents.

How often should I backup my Blog?

This is a question whose answer is dependent on the nature of the blog and how often posts are published. A blog that publishes one or more posts a day should have a daily backup. Blogs with one or two posts a week should have weekly backup. Monthly backup is not advisable for any blog because 30 days is a great deal of time during which anything can happen. So, if you're posting every day, you should think of doing a daily backup for your blog.

Where should I save the backup copy of my blog?

We all have ways of saving files and where we save them. While most people prefer to save files locally on the computer, it is worth telling that saving your file on the computer isn't safe enough. During backup, blogger will specifically give you the option to save the XML file locally to your device so that you can access it offline. When your computer crashes or requires formatting, you will definitely lose your file. I have suggested the following places where you can save your duplicate file.

  • Locally on your computer.
  • Using an external storage device, e.g. external Hard Disk, Flash Drive, SD Card, etc.
  • On your mobile phone which enhances portability.
  • Online using cloud storage. If you have a google account, there is an automatic online storage platform for on Google Drive. Other cloud storage platforms include Cloud fare, One Drive, etc. Saving your file on the internet means you can refer to it anywhere, adding to portability. But, this is challenged by availability and security issues. Network might be bad to access the file, while the file can be deleted when hacked.
For the best result, I advise that you use a combination of two or more of these methods. For example, I can save the file on the computer, mobile phone, Google drive and HD, though it requires commitment.

How to Backup Blogger Contents.

Yes! We've finally gotten to where you have been waiting for. Now, you will see the simple steps for achieving this important way of remaining with your blog's content. To backup the contents of your blog, follow these steps.

Step 1: 
Login to your blogger account by providing the necessary authentication details. Once you are logged in, select the blog you want to backup. If you only have one blog attached to account, ignore this, otherwise select the appropriate blog.

Back Blogger Contents - Post, pages and comments


Step 2:
Click on Settings to display sub-settings for the blog.

Step 3: 
Click on Other and at the top click Backup Content. This will reveal the window for backup.

Step 4:
Click the Save to Computer Button. Wait for the contents to be downloaded. Depending on the type of OS and Browser you are using, you may be prompted to select a location where to save the XML file locally. On this dialogue box, you can change the name to what you want. Once the download is complete, you have gotten exactly what is needed - a duplicate copy of your blog's contents.

Restoring the Contents

The purpose of having a backup copy of your contents is to restore it when occasion calls for that. Restoring the contents follows almost the same steps, with only the last step being different. To do this, follow these steps. While still logged in to your blogger account,

Import Content

Step 1: Click Settings to show other links under it.

Step 2: Click Other and then click Import content at the top. This will open a small window for further actions.

Import from computer

Step 3: Provide the necessary reCAPTCHA verification details by either ticking the box or typing the displayed text. If you want posts and pages you have imported or restored to be published automatically, check the button - Automatically publish all imported posts and pages.

Step 4: Click Import from computer. On the window that opens, go to where you have save the XML file for the content backup. Click on it and then Open. This will import the contents that have been save to the computer as backup and either publishes the posts and pages automatically or lives it for you do manually.

If you saved the copy online, you will need to first download it to your computer before applying the above steps. Similarly, if it was saved on an external device, connect the device to the computer and copy to a location on the computer. You can do the same for mobile devices (like phone or tablet) or carryout the upload directly from the mobile device, following the above steps.

How to Backup Blogger Theme/Template

Just like contents, theme can duplicated and saved for future use. As earlier stated, it is important to always have this duplicate copy to avoid frustration, especially if you have good gadgets/widgets and had designed the template to your taste. To backup a template or theme, ensure that you are logged in to your blogger account and the right blog is selected. Then follow these steps.

Theme backup


Step 1: From the list of menu on the left side, click Theme. This will show the theme's options which include; customise, edit, Backup/Restore, etc.

Step 2: Click on Backup/Restore at the far top right corner. A small window will be displayed.
Download theme

Step 3: Click Download theme button to begin the backup. Wait for the download to complete. Once it is complete, you can copy the XML file to your preferred preferred storage location(s).

Restoring the Theme/Template

Just as in the above steps, restoring the theme or template follows the same process. The difference is in the fact that you don't download but upload the file. To do this, follow the steps below:

Restoring theme


Step 1: Click Theme from the side menu to display the options to the right.

Step 2: Next, click Backup/Restore at the top right corner of the displayed window. This will open a small window.

step 3: On this window, click Choose file. Locate where the file has been stored and select it before clicking Open. 

Note that the file type must be XML file. If you have successfully selected the right file, the name of the file will be displayed beside Choose file button. If a wrong file was chosen, an error message will be displayed or when upload button is clicked, the server will display an error to let you know that something has gone wrong somewhere. Also, It must be a theme file for it to work.
Step 4: Click Upload below Choose file and wait for the file to be uploaded. A message will be displayed to inform you whether the file was successfully uploaded or not.
Upload theme
Remember that if the file was saved elsewhere, you will have to make it locally accessible first. For example, a file stored online should be downloaded to the computer first, while those on an external storage device should be copied to a location on the computer.


Final Words

Prevention is better than cure! Don't wait until something drastic happens before backing up your blog. Start right away following the steps given above to keep a duplicate copy of both your contents and theme.

Hope you enjoyed the lesson?

Happy blogging!



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