Restoring a Joomla site with Akeeba Backup

How to restore your Joomla site from an Akeeba backup archive.

These notes assume you have previously installed Akeeba Backup on your Joomla site and used it to create a backup archive. They also assume you are restoring onto the same remote server, although the concepts are also applicable to a local server. If you are migrating your site to another server, see the Joomla migration notes.

SSH into your server and copy the Akeeba Backup archive you wish to restore into your Joomla docroot. How this is done depends on your setup; on one of my servers that was:

%cp backup/example.com-20111123-201502.jpa public_html/example.com/

Download the latest stable version of Akeeba Kickstart. Unpack it and upload the file kickstart.php to your Joomla docroot. The other files in the Kickstart package are localizations and can be discarded.

Point your browser to “http://example.com/kickstart.php“, change any settings as desired (default settings are usually fine) and click “Start”. If Kickstart fails stating that it is unable to extract directories, change the permissions of the installation directory to 777.

Kickstart will extract the backup file and prompt you to begin the installer. Before doing so, inspect the extracted files with SSH and confirm that ownership and permissions are correct. Ideally, ownership should be username:users, file permissions 644, and directory permissions 755. Correct if needed. If you are unable to correct — perhaps ownership is set to “nobody” or files are otherwise not writable by you — then something fundamental is wrong with permissions or CGI wrapping. Stop, correct the issue, and start over.

When all is well, have Kickstart run the installer. Follow the on-screen instructions. In most cases, you can accept the default values.

Once the backup has been installed, follow the checklist in “Configuration: What You Must Do” in the Joomla installation notes. You may also consider items in “Configuration: What You May Want To Do”.

If the site is offline, take it online in Site – Global Configuration – Site.

When finished, remember to delete:

  • installation/ (This should have been deleted by Kickstart, but confirm this)
  • The Akeeba backup archive you copied to the Joomla docroot, e.g. site-example.com-20111123-201502.jpa
  • kickstart.php

TIPS AND TRICKS
If you don’t need to restore a whole site and only want to recover particular files, use Akeeba eXtract Wizard (video walkthrough, download).

Akeeba Backup Core is available at no cost and depends upon donations from users to sustain the project. If you find it useful, please consider purchasing the Professional version or making a donation to the project.

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About Warren Post

So far: Customer support guy, jungle guide, IT consultant, beach bum, entrepreneur, teacher, diplomat, over-enthusiastic cyclist. Tomorrow: who knows?
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