Duplicator Quick Start

Covers both Duplicator Lite & Pro*

Create WordPress Backup

Back up Site (create package)

  1. Click "Duplicator/Pro" ❯ "Packages" ❯ "Create New"
  2. Enter a package name
  3. Check "Default" storage endpoint ❯ click "Next"
  4. Let the scanner run and click "Build"
The package files are now ready for installation. By default all files in your WordPress root directory will be archived as well as a copy of your Database. You have the option to filter directories, files and database tables when creating the package.

Back up to Dropbox Pro Only

1. Link Dropbox to Duplicator Pro

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Storage" ❯ "Add New"
  2. Enter storage name ❯ select "Dropbox" type
  3. Click "Connect to Dropbox" ❯ click "Authorize Dropbox"
  4. Click "Allow" & close authorization tab
  5. Click "Finalize Setup" on the storage screen
A successful connection to Dropbox status will now show. This is a one time process.

2. Create Instant Package

Now build and upload a package to your Dropbox account.

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Packages" ❯ "Create New"
  2. Enter a package name
  3. Check "DropBox" storage endpoint ❯ click "Next"
  4. Let the scanner run and click "Build"
At this point the package files will be automatically uploaded to Dropbox. You can then use the files to Install a Site. This process can also easily be replicated with Google Drive .

Back up with a Schedule Pro Only

1. Create Template

A template is a reusable package configuration that can be used in instant or scheduled package creation

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Templates" ❯ "Add New"
  2. Enter a template name & specifications ❯ click "Save"

2. Create Schedule

A schedule generates a package at a given frequency for easy automation

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Schedules" ❯ "Add New"
  2. Enter schedule name, template, storage location(s) and frequency ❯ click "Save"

3. Test Schedule

To verify proper schedule operation

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Schedules" ❯ "Run Now" on the desired schedule
  2. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Packages" ❯ menu to view running package build
  3. Wait for the package to complete building

4. Database Only (Optional)

Schedule a backup of only the Database

  1. Click "Duplicator Pro" ❯ "Templates" ❯ edit template assigned to schedule
  2. Open "Archive Section" ❯ check the 'Enable File Filter' checkbox
  3. On the right side look for a link that says "[root path]" and click it
  4. This will be the root path of your site excluding all files
  5. Click "Save Template" and follow Step 3 above to validate.


Install/Migrate a WordPress Site

Site Install

The following describes how to restore a site in the same or new location using a Duplicator package (installer/archive). It's assumed you've created a package as described in the "Back up Site" section above and plan to install all files and the database contained in the package. * Items in green apply only to Duplicator Pro users.

1. Download package files to local computer

After creating a package download the installer and archive files from any one of the locations below to your local computer:

  • Default: Click on the "Installer" and "Archive" buttons from the main packages screen to download.
  • Dropbox*: Go to dropbox.com or use Dropbox client on your PC/MAC.
  • Google Drive*: Go to drive.google.com or use Google client on your PC/MAC.
  • Amazon S3*: Go to your Amazon AWS account
  • FTP: This option is the least common and should only be used if your having issues with the "Default" option.
    FTP ❯ website root directory ❯ open "wp-snapshots" folder ❯ find matching [hash-code]_installer.php with [hash-code]_archive.zip and download.
    Note: With the FTP option you will need to rename the installer file from [hash-code]_installer.php to just "installer.php". The hash-code is simply a random series of number and letters to provide security on the file so it can't be downloaded by a random user.


2. Upload package files to target location

Place the installer.php and archive.zip files in a directory where you would like to install/duplicate the WordPress site.

ON A HOSTED SITE

Use FTP or cPanel to upload both the archive.zip and installer.php to your host provider. Place the files in a new empty directory under your host's webroot where they are accessible from a valid url such as http://your-domain/installer.php or http://your-domain/your-wp-directory/installer.php. On some hosts the root directory will be a something like public_html  -or- www. If you're not sure what your root directory is then contact your hosting provider.

Important: Since the archive contains site customizations as well as core WordPress, WordPress shouldn't be in the directory beforehand. The only files in the directory should be the installer.php and archive before you run the installer.

If you haven't chosen a hosting provider yet please see host recommendations.
ON YOUR OWN COMPUTER (localhost)

Be sure you have PHP, Apache & MySQL installed on your local computer with software such as XAMPP, Instant WordPress or MAMP for MAC. Place the package.zip and installer.php into any empty directory under your webroot or where they can be served up by your local webserver then continue with Step 3 below.


3. Browse to installer.php and install

  1. Open a web browser (i.e Chrome, Firefox, IE) and browse to the 'installer.php' file such as:
    http(s)://your-domain/installer.php or http(s)://your-domain/your-wp-directory/installer.php.
  2. On Step 1 ❯ Click the next button
  3. On Step 2 ❯ Enter database setup info ❯ test connection ❯ click next
  4. On Step 3 ❯ Click the next button
  5. On Step 4 ❯ Login remove installer files
  6. Your site has been migrated

Database Install

The following details how to back up only the database from "Site A" and deploy it to "Site B". Please note these steps will only move the database, so if your files are not in sync with the Database you will have issues. Please use the approach with caution and be sure that your files are not out of sync with the database.

1. Create New DB Only Package

  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Packages ❯ click "Create New" button
  2. On Step 1 Setup ❯ Archive ❯ check "Archive Only the Database"
  3. Build package then download installer and archive files

2. Transfer installer and archive to target location

  1. Login to target location via FTP, cPanel or your host's control panel tools
  2. Transfer installer and archive to target location
  3. Open web browser and browse to http://yoursite.com/installer.php

3. Run Installer

  1. Installer should have 'Database Only Mode' in upper right corner.
  2. On Step 1 ❯ Click the next button
  3. On Step 2 ❯ Enter database setup info ❯ test connection ❯ click next
  4. On Step 3 ❯ Click the next button
  5. On Step 4 ❯ Login remove installer files
  6. Only the database will be updated

Database & File Synchronization:
How do I know if my files and database are in sync? There is no real clear answer to this question however there are some general rules you can consider. Typically the file system is only updated when you do the following actions:
  • Add a new image/video/file to a page/post or media content
  • Install a new plugin or theme
  • Update a plugin setting that writes to files like the .htaccess file (i.e. security plugins)
So if any of these actions have been performed then its likely that WordPress wrote to both your file-system and database. For example say you both have "Site A" and "Site B" where "Site B" is a mirror copy of "Site A". You then install a new plugin on "Site A" and create a Database only archive and try to move it over to "Site B" using the "Database Only Install" option.

In this scenario the files on "Site B" are not in sync with the database created on "Site A", because "Site B" does not have the plugin files. So if you try to install the "Site A" database onto "Site B" you may run into issues because "Site B" did not get the plugin files that "Site A" just installed. In many cases you can simply install the plugin on "Site B" and things will be in working order. However if you do allot of changes on "Site A" then it is recommend to go ahead and also update those files onto "Site B".

Two-Part Install

The following procedure was developed for use tightly restricted hosts that prevent a zip archive from getting created. Note that this operation is valid for both Duplicator and Duplicator Pro but is usually not needed in Pro due to its support of the "DupArchive" format. DupArchive was specifically designed to get around limitations imposed by hosts related to zip.

PART 1: Manually copy WordPress files

These steps show how to manually copy from source site to destination.
cPanel (Faster)
  1. Login to the source site's cPanel, click "File Manager" and enter the site's directory*
  2. Select all files, right click, select "Compress", choose zip and set name to mysite.zip.
  3. Download mysite.zip to your local computer
  4. Upload mysite.zip to the new location*
  5. Extract mysite.zip and remove the mysite.zip file
FTP
  1. Login to an FTP Client
  2. Copy the files from the source site to your computer*
  3. Copy files from your computer up to the destination site*

*Website directories will likely be public_html, or public_html/sitename. If unsure about where site files are located talk to your host support.

PART 2: Copy the database with Duplicator

After you have all the files uploaded correctly to your new location you will then run all these steps to copy over the database.
1. Create New DB Only Package
  1. Goto Duplicator ❯ Packages ❯ click "Create New" button
  2. On Step 1 Setup ❯ Archive ❯ check "Archive Only the Database"
  3. Build package then download installer and archive files
2. Transfer installer and archive to target location
  1. Login to target location via FTP, cPanel or your hosts control panel tools.
  2. Transfer installer and archive to target location
  3. Open web browser and browse to http://yoursite.com/installer.php
3. Run Installer
  1. Installer should have 'Database Only Mode' in upper right corner.
  2. On Step 1 ❯ Click the next button
  3. On Step 2 ❯ Enter database setup info ❯ test connection ❯ click next
  4. On Step 3 ❯ Click the next button
  5. On Step 4 ❯ Login remove installer files
  6. Only the database will be updated
After all steps are complete your site should be fully migrated. These two parts together allow you to move your WordPress site in a two stage process.
Also see:
Recommended hosting providers for Duplicator?

EXTRA RESOURCES:



* Feature only available in Duplicator Pro