[SolidMean] ForumBackup

Unmaintained [SolidMean] ForumBackup 1.3.01

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Compatible XF 1.x versions
  1. 1.3
  2. 1.4
  3. 1.5
Additional requirements
PHP 5.3+, PHP exec() (see Requirements below), mysqldump, tar, gzip
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This is a great option for sites that currently don't have a scheduled backup routine in place for their XenForo installation.

This addon, once installed, will backup your database and/or forum directory as 2 separate files to a location of your choosing, preferably outside of the forum root. You can choose the name of the backup files, and the date format to append to the filename. You can also choose how often to run the backups (daily, weekly, etc.) via the cron settings, and how many copies of your database and code to keep. You can run the backup manually via the Tools -> Cron Entries -> ForumBackup -> Controls page. By default, the backup database is scheduled to run daily at midnight, and the code backup is scheduled to run at 00:30.

The forum is (optionally) turned off while the processes are running, and the files are compressed with gzip or pigz. There is an option of what message to display to any visitors while the backups are running.

This addon adds no branding, has no encryption, and no "call home" features. That being said, this add-on makes no guarantees or claims about its usefulness.

If you get a server error generated when this cron runs. Turn debug on, and run it again, a log file will be generated in the backup directory that can tell you what has failed. Send the contents to me via conversation if you need help.

Technical Stuff
If you have problems with the add-on make sure that you have the backup directory set to a directory writable by the web server. The biggest problems seem to be server configurations that don't know where mysqldump is located. You can also turn on debug in the options and manually run the cron to see if it records any errors in the generated log file.

This backup add-on is a little more security aware than others that use the mysqldump utility. In this version, the database configurations are written to a temporary, randomized config file, which are then read into the mysqldump utility, and the file removed. In other backup solutions that use mysqldump, the database credentials are supplied with the mysqldump command, which can allow anybody with 'ps' access on the server to see your database credentials while it runs.

Thanks to Bobster for some help with understanding some things.

  • This add-on uses the PHP exec() function to run the mysqldump and tar commands to backup the database and forum directory, respectively. If you are on shared hosting, you may not have access to the exec() function. The installation should fail if this is the case.
  • Your server must have the mysqldump and tar commands available. For 95% of XenForo installations, this shouldn't be a problem. You may have to specify the location of mysqldump in the options if the add-on tells you that mysqldump can't be found.
  • For larger boards, you may need to have a pretty high PHP max_execution_time. From my testing, it took less than a minute to backup the database and forum root with 200,000+ posts and 3000+ members.
  • XenForo 1.3.0 and above, and PHP 5.3+ is required.

What this add-on does NOT do

  • This addon will not work on Windows servers.
  • This addon will not allow you to restore from a backup. See this post for tips on verifying and restoring your backup.
  • This addon does not provide a user interface to download backups.
  • This addon does not have the ability to transfer backups offsite via ftp or other means, but extensions are available to do this through DropBox and SFTP. See "Related Resources" below.
A German translation exists for all versions 1.1.9 and up.





Related resources
Upload your ForumBackup files to DropBox:
[SolidMean] ForumBackup Dropbox Upload

Transfer your ForumBackup files to another host:
[SolidMean] ForumBackup SFTP Transfer

Using WINScp to schedule backup transfers (useful to transfer files from your web site to your Windows computer)
Using WinSCP to schedule backup transfers

German Translation
First release
Last update


5.00 star(s) 20 ratings

More resources from SneakyDave

Latest updates

  1. 01/21/2018: Version 1.3.01 (bugs fixed, compatibility, and new features)

    - Fixed a bug in the admin template that PHP 7.1 was not playing nicely with. - Fixed a bug with...
  2. Small Cron Entry Change

    02/19.2916: Version 1.2.01 (cron task change) - Fixed issue of cron tasks being rewritten when...
  3. 12/29/2015: Version 1.2.00 (new options, background changes)

    - Added support for future Google Drive - Rewrote code that instantiated the SFTP extension...

Latest reviews

Since i prefer to switch the Forum & DB off during backups this is an excellent solution! Easy to setup and everything works great, thank you!
Thanks for the great review Laetos
A fantastic plugin. Works perfectly and isn't overly complicated to use. I also really appreciate that the developer continues to release updates. If you're considering this plugin definitely get the dropbox addon, it's totally worth the money!
Thanks for the great review electrogypsy. I appreciate it.
I migrated from vB to XF and used a similar type MOD with vB, so this was one of the first add-ons I was looking for. I'm a bit more experienced now than when I started out with vB, so setup of the [SolidMean] ForumBackup add-on was a breeze.

I want to THANK SneakyDave for making the effort to create this add-on and putting up with all the people not reading the thread for the excellent help information contained within.

The included readme.txt file was all I needed to get it running, yet it seems some questions are asked over and over in the discussion of the add-on. MUCH to SneakyDave's credit his discussion thread is only 15 pages, whereas the similar MOD I used on vB had 40+ pages of questions from confused & frustrated users.

Overall, this is a TOP NOTCH add-on I'm quite happy to have found.
Thank you for the great review adwade.
Addon that every forum must have. Excellent support from creator, as it should be in ideal virtual world. Thanks Dave for creting this.
Thanks for the great review Sunka. I really appreciate it
Wow, I have no idea how I skipped this outstanding add-on. This is exactly what I was looking for, awesome work, man! Thank you so much for sharing!
Thanks for the positive review, I really appreciate it.
This add-on is a great solution for boards with busy administrators who need an automated system for backups to ensure a healthy forum board. We've been using it for awhile and we're very pleased with it! :)
Thank you for the positive review John.
Absolutely a must-have addon. What else can you say? Works great on VPS and on lesser-powered servers, just need a bit more time between backups on the slower ones to keep them from locking out the board. After a few weeks of feeling out this time spacing it runs like clockwork, every day, without fail.
Thanks for the review Floyd!
This is great :), thanks Dave. After testing it on 1.4.7 its working great no more forgetting those daily backups :D. it makes my life much easier ;)
Thanks for testing on 1.4.7. I haven't upgraded yet!
Great addon. Im using it on private VPS and cronjob is very quick and smooth, it took about 1 minute to backup 1500 memebers and 60k posts and theards.
Thanks Commander!
Great add-on for keeping multiple copies of your data in case of emergency! :)
Thanks Clickfinity!
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