The following article was written by and posted at Hostgator.com, our recommended hosting provider for self-managed sites. While no hosting provider is perfect, it has still been our experience that Hostgator’s support and offerings are the best that you can get for the budget. Our favorite thing about them is that their support and servers are based in the United States (at least presently) and that means American tech jobs.
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A full cPanel backup makes a copy of all of your files, email, databases, etc. Once initiated, you must allow the backup time to perform. The server can send you an email to an address you specify once the backup is ready to download. The steps for generating, downloading and restoring a full backup are explained in detail below.
To generate a full backup in cPanel:
This will generate the back up for you and place the tar.gz file inside of your home directory. You can then download the backup via cPanel, FTP or SSH.
To download the backup from cPanel:
A full backup must be restored by the root user for the server. [Hostgator] will restore your full backups for free as long as the account previously existed on the server and you have uploaded the file yourself.