Steve When is a Backup Not a Backup?

SafeAt Backup Machine we cater for customers from all manner of different hosting companies.  Our aim is to be a universal system for all website owners, disconnected from the company and server systems of their selected hosting providers.  A fail safe in a time of need.

However, one type of website is out of our reach: The “Website Builder” website.

Website builders let you create a website, on your own, through the web.  You know the ones – “Choose your colours, choose your menus and widgets, type your content, etc.”

These systems have incredible appeal – you can often get a good looking website up and running incredibly quickly, and without any technical skills.  But beware!  Unless you have access to your website’s files and database, you are stuck with your provider.  There is usually no effective way for you to move that website elsewhere should you want to or need to.

Recently a customer contacted us regarding one of these sites. They had been told by the website builder company to use “HTTrack Website Copier” to run their backups, should they wish to take a copy themselves.

Do not be fooled!  HTTrack will take a copy of your website in the same way that taking a photo of your car is a copy of your car.  It might look like your car, but none of the controls will work, and you’ll certainly be late for work if you try to use it.

HTTrack will not copy the necessary nuts and bolts to make your website ‘work’.  Your backup might contain a copy of the content of your blog posts, but you won’t be able to post anything new and none of the other dynamic content on your website will work.

If you want to be able to run your website anywhere, you need access to your website’s files and its database.  Without this, you’re stuck with your current provider, and you must make sure you’re satisfied with their backup arrangements.

Steve Backup Machine now supports SSH key authentication for SFTP backups

SSH KeyYou can now backup sites even more securely by using SSH Key authentication within Backup Machine.

If your hosting provider supports them, SSH keys offer greater levels of security than regular passwords.

To enable this functionality, simply specify “SSH / SFTP” in our simple “Add Website” wizard, then upload a private key from your server, rather than supply a password.

Your private SSH key should be kept secret, just like your password.  When you upload your key, we strongly encrypt it to keep it safe.

Steve Backup your website database without remote access!

We’ve been working hard at Backup Machine to create a new way to backup your website’s database, even when your host doesn’t give you remote access.

Since we launched, we’ve allowed you to backup your database either directly or by using SSH.  Even then, sometimes that hasn’t been enough.  We’re truly committed to ensuring that everyone can back up their data, so this didn’t stop us searching for alternatives.

Today we’re proud to announce a third backup option: Backup your database through your website.

By using a simple PHP script that you can securely download through our site, we can now backup your database – even when the other options aren’t available to you.


Security at Backup Machine is paramount.  As such, all data and database credentials are strongly encrypted when transferred to and from your site.  The script itself does not contain a copy of your database password.

Unlike some other inferior technologies, we’ve worked hard to ensure that your data remains safe at all times.

Let’s go!

This option is now available to everyone through their Backup Machine account.  If you’ve been unable to backup your database in the past, why not give us a go with one of our free accounts?