So we noticed that the backup procedure on one of our client’s websites wasn’t completing properly. It’s a good thing we’ve got a backup for our backup.
Website Backups have become a required part of modern website strategies. The sad truth is that websites today are threatened by hackers wanting to deface web pages, servers that unfortunately go down and malware that’s always trying to hijack your website traffic.
When trouble happens, fixing the problem can be very time and resource consuming. Sometimes the simplest solution is to restore your website to a known safe state using a Website Backup.
Introducing our Website Maintenance: Backup Package
Caveena Solutions is introducing our Website Maintenance: Backup Package specifically to address this need. With this package, your website will enjoy the safety of regular automated Website Backups for your peace of mind. On top of that, a copy of your Website Backups are stored off-site to further mitigate the risk of losing your website.
Now this was a head-scratcher: the BackupBuddy settings on 5 of my client websites simply reset for no apparent reason. And that means the websites were not being automatically backed up. Not good.
After chatting with iThemes Support (the people who make BackupBuddy), I learned that connectivity issues between the website and database can fool BackupBuddy into thinking there are no settings causing the plugin to revert to defaults. Connectivity issues could be due to DDoS attacks or a problem with the hardware. iThemes said they are aware of this issue and have built in more checks but as is life they can’t account for every single scenario.
Fortunately I caught the problem during a routine maintenance check on a client’s website. BackupBuddy now comes with a way to export the plugin settings so it’s a good idea to save a copy just in case.
According to iThemes, version 4.8.0 of iThemes Security WordPress plugin removed the malware scanning feature that relied on VirusTotal. It’s not iThemes fault; VirusTotal discontinued the service to all WordPress plugins. Well, darn.
iThemes suggests using VirusTotal’s URL scanner or Sucuri’s SiteCheck, both of which require you to scan each website manually. Sucuri also offers automated server-side scanning as part of their paid plans.
One other option that wasn’t mentioned by iThemes is the Sucuri Security WordPress Plugin which allows you to initiate a scan from your WordPress admin. The scan needs to be initiated manually though.
I’m not sure if this is a brand-spanking new feature or if I just missed it but using JetPack you can now update WordPress Plugins across all your websites through your WordPress.com My Sites Dashboard. What’s even more interesting is that you can set plugins to auto-update.
Right now this feature is limited only to Plugins — no updating Themes or the base WordPress installation.WordPress already auto-update (unless disabled) so I doubt this will ever be offered. I wonder if we’ll eventually see the option of updating Themes through WordPress.com.
There are already a few services out there that’ll help you manage all your WordPress websites. Here are a few that I know of in alphabetical order:
More information can be found on the Site Management support page. And be sure to turn on the JSON API.
I can’t change anything when I try to manage my sites on WordPress.com.
You need to enable site management on your Jetpack-connected site from the dashboard by either opting in as mentioned above, or by enabling it under the JSON API settings in Jetpack → Settings → JSON API → Configure and checking the box for the “Allow remote management of themes, plugins, and WordPress via the JSON API” option and saving your changes.
In late 2014 I participated in the BSB International Marathon organized by the Brunei Athletics Association. How did I do? I’m glad you asked 🙂 I placed 33rd out of the 127 runners in my category and covered 5km in 32 minutes 28 seconds, a personal best.
Despite the issues that plagued the marathon, I think a hearty “Congratulations” is in order to the Brunei Athletics Association. I’m sure they will take the lessons learned to heart and do even better next time. That said, there are a few website matters we can scrutinize and draw reminders from.