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Restoring VS Migrating

Hi everyone. Bes Zain here! :)

Backing up sites with BackupBuddy is just a small part of what BackupBuddy does. BackupBuddy allows you to make use of such backups later on. There are 2 big things you can do with BackupBuddy backups.

ImportBuddy - helping you restore and migrate sites

ImportBuddy - helping you restore and migrate sites

You could move a site to another location, which is a process defined by the terms “Migration” or “Migrate.” You could also put back your original site into its original location in case something bad happens, which is a process defined by the term “Restore.”

Restoring a site with BackupBuddy is almost the same process as migrating a site with BackupBuddy. Following are the major similarities and differences to give you an idea of what to expect when doing a restore and when doing a migration.


  1. ImportBuddy file: The ImportBuddy file importbuddy.php is what you use for both restoring and migrating a site.
  2. Upload: You upload the backup file, for both restores and migrations, into the same directory as ImportBuddy.
  3. Requirements: The server requirements for ImportBuddy do not change based on whether one is restoring or one is migrating a site. Such requirements depend on the server, the type of backup, and how big the backup file is.
  4. WordPress: Neither process requires any WordPress to be present in the existing directory where ImportBuddy is. ImportBuddy will install WordPress automatically in both cases.

As you may have noticed, the similarities allow ImportBuddy to be setup in the same manner in both the restore and the migration processes.

There are differences between the 2 situations, by the way.


  1. Destination: Restoring a site means you’re putting it back into its original place. Migrating a site moves it somewhere else like to a new domain, server, host, directory, or all of those options.
  2. MySql info: When restoring, you usually use the same MySql database information from before. When migrating, you usually use completely different MySql database information.
  3. Original Site: Restoring always means that your original site is gone or that it will be overwritten completely during the restore. Migration, in contrast, can be done while keeping the original site around, untouched, even after the migration.
  4. Domain name: Restoring almost always means you keep the same domain name. Migration usually means you’re changing the domain name.

You can see clearly that when you’re doing a migration, you have to know the new host or domain name information, along with some other things, in addition to having your original BackupBuddy backup.

Either way, ImportBuddy makes sure that it walks you through both tasks, very easily,

Do You Restore more, or Migrate more?

Were you aware of all the similarities between restoring and migrating via BackupBuddy? Do you restore sites more, or migrate them more? What do you think of the differences?

Please share your comments below. Thanks! :)


  1. I have used all of the features.

    In 4 click I can take a snapshot of an online WP site and have in on my machine for development
    I use it for daily backups to an Amazon S3 storage
    I use it to clone a subsite into a new one for new partners in just 2 clicks
    I use it for migrations to new servers and new domains

    I whis I had discovered BackupBuddy years ago!

    Keep on the good work!

  2. I love this product and am glad I purchased it. I have the backup process pretty well covered (database & full). However, where I have difficulty is with restoring the site. In fact, migrating us easy too. It’s like starting over (new directory, database, server, etc.)

    What if I want to restore a site back in the original location, using the same URL, database, etc. just put everything back as it was and where it was.

    When I upload my backup to the same directory and engage the process it tells me the following (1) An existing WordPress already exists and performing this action could cause data corruption or something along those lines, and (2) When I attempt to use the same database it will not allow me to us the same prefix wp_ so when I give it another prefix my database is now doubled with information wp_ and bu_ so I have to go back and manually remove all the wp_ info.

    Can someone please help me understand how to simply restore a site to its original location exactly as it was? I’ve read the instructions, searched the Internet and experimented with a test site, but I’m still unclear with restoring. I use GoDaddy to host.

    Thank you for your valued time.



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