How I Lost All My WordPress Data And How I Got It Back

One of the things that bloggers and website owners continuously do is optimize their site for a better load speed. For a good user experience, one needs to have a site that loads faster and does not lead to the user running away. Not only is this bad for your readership, but your Google rankings are affected drastically, your bounce rate goes up, and the Alexa rankings get affected. Moreover, it could lead to low ad revenues.

Losing My WordPress Data

My website speed was slow, and I wished to optimize the same. After reading about 30 posts on how to do this, I removed plugins, I optimized by the database, I reduced the HTTP requests, but still, I wasn’t satisfied with the results, so I went into the phpMyAdmin of my site and decided to delete the unused tables.

How I Lost All My WordPress Data And How I Got It Back

Now I am not a techie, but with whatever fair amount of knowledge I had about PHP and WordPress I deleted a few tables and went back to check my blog and what came forward was shocking. I felt I had lost everything and was ready to do anything to rectify my mistake.

I had deleted one of the critical database files, the one that had all the data, all posts, all comments, all tags, everything &dmash; and I was broken. A blog I had spent three years on, built it like a baby, got a decent readership, made it into a company, was all gone. Everything blasted. YouthKiAwaaz had almost 2000 posts, 12000 comments, 6000 tag — all lost.

How I Solved This Problem & Restored it

So what next? I had a quick call with my host, and I was told that there is no solution. After looking up Google and being heart broken for about 2 hours, I found a solution. Thankfully, I was using a backup plugin and used to do weekly backups. This incident took place on the 12th Jan, and my last backup was on the 7th Jan. I quickly contacted my hosting company again and asked them to fix it, to upload my SQL database as of the 7th — and thankfully it all fell into place. I had lost all my data published between the 7th and the 12th, but thanks to Feedburner email service, I had it all in my email. It took a night, but I uploaded all the data, and I was up and running.

This was probably one of the biggest learning for me, and I wish to share a few highlights with you here. Your blog is your baby — treat it like one. Make sure you are taking regular backups. Earlier I used to take weekly ones, but since this incident, I am taking daily backups and making sure that I save the key data of my blog.

You must also ensure that you have an excellent, helpful host, with immediate customer service, like I had. The host helped me a lot in finding out what the problem was.

Am sure you would not do something I did — delete your own tables, but you never know when your blog would go down and when you would need to reload everything — it  could be a server attack, a spam, a WordPress attack, or anything.

A backup can be your savior, and as a professional blogger, I recommend you to take daily back ups. Have you had any such experiences? What do you think?

32 thoughts on “How I Lost All My WordPress Data And How I Got It Back”

  1. First……….! shock to you when you when see you have loose your data and ………when ………… you try again by heart and mind you again recover your data……… is good luck to you.
    Also it is a great awareness for all newbies and old web owners to care next time regarding to maintain their website’s data base.

  2. prevention is better than cure ! so always take a backup before you do anything to your database

  3. That’s why its dangerous to play around with the tables. You can speed up the database by optimizing it, but deleting them seems very risky indeed.

  4. Really Anshul Tewari, You shared a memorable story. Like you I had also an another terrible problem. However I could solve that problem after two days after contacting to my host.

  5. Wow. that sounds real scary especially if you have that many number of posts already. Thats why its always important to back things up and seek the help of your hosting..

  6. You should not play with database without making a backup.
    I always backed up my WordPress in two ways;
    MYSQL backup
    WordPress XML backup.

  7. Glad it all went well for you! It is very important to have regular backups, whether daily or weekly it all depends on how active your blog is. An active blog like HBB should have hourly backups! 🙂

  8. TIP: make sure whatever plugin you use it doesnt simply over-write your existing backups. Make sure it creates anew one and you keep a folder of backups.

    This way if a backup fails, you still other backups.verifired backups.

    After my extreme loss, I am extremely careful.

    Keep daily backups saved on your hard-drive, and verify those backups will open.

    I would simply keep keep 7 days worth of verified backups.

  9. Dependent on the amount of traffic that you get, you’ll definitely want to backup at least once a day, but maybe even more frequently than that. Thank God for WP-DB-Backup

  10. Is there any plugins to backup all the data on wordpress blog and restore it. if so please share some of them it will be helpful.

  11. Recently lost a database of 35000+ members and 15000+ posts, was devastating. I had a backup, but it was corrupt and un-recoverable.

    Tip: not only make backups, but ensure they are usable, don’t take for granted they will work.

    • The best way to avoid such a contingency (which will happen if your database is huge) is to test it in the WordPress installation in your localhost – aka your own compueter. You can mirror your blog in your localhost web server, test any new theme or plugin before you upload to your web host.

      There are many ready-to-use — and did I say: “FREE” — Apache-PHP-MySql packages available for both Windows and MacOs. And as for Linex, the LAMP stack is generic and in-built.

      My dos pesos!



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