Backup for cPanel

Valid for versions 120 through the latest version




Last modified: June 21, 2024


The Backup interface allows you to download and store your site in a backup file. This interface also allows you to restore your website from a backup file.

  • Newer users may prefer to use the Backup Wizard interface (cPanel » Home » Files » Backup Wizard).
  • The system stores backup files as tarballs that use the .tar.gz file extension. For more information about what backup files contain, read our Backup Tarball Contents documentation.
  • Some settings only appear if your hosting provider’s server profile enables them.

Full Backup

In this section, click Download a Full Account Backup to create, download, or store a full backup file. The Generate a Full Backup interface will appear.

  • You cannot use a full backup file to restore your website through the cPanel interface. Contact your hosting provider for assistance.
  • You must decompress the backup file before you attempt to restore it.
  • After you decompress the backup file, you can upload and restore individual portions of your website that the full backup file contains.
  • The backup process for an account near or over its quota may fail because the system cannot write necessary files, such as a database lock file.

Generate a Full Backup

To create a new full backup, perform the following steps:

  1. Select a storage setting from the Backup Destination menu:

    • Home Directory — Select this setting to save the backup file on the server.
    • Remote FTP Server — Select this setting to use FTP to store the backup file on a remote server.
    • Remote FTP Server (passive mode transfer) — Select this setting to use passive FTP to store the backup file on a remote server.
    • Secure Copy (SCP) — Select this setting to use secure copy protocol (SCP) to store the backup file on a remote server.
  2. Select a notification setting:

    • To receive a notification when the backup finishes, enter your email address in the available text box.
    • If you do not wish to receive a notification, select Do not send email notification of backup completion.
  3. If you selected Remote FTP Server, Remote FTP Server (passive mode transfer), or Secure Copy (SCP) from the Backup Destination menu, enter the remote destination’s information in the available text boxes.

  4. Click Generate Backup.

Account Backups

To download an existing full backup file to your computer, select the desired backup file’s filename from the Account Backups menu.


The backup file uses the backup-MM-DD-YYYY format, where MM is the month, DD is the day, and YYYY is the four-digit year.

Partial Backups

Partial backup files store individual parts of your account. To download a specific item, select the backup type that contains that item. The system downloads the backup file as a .gz file to your computer.

Download a Home Directory Backup

To download a home directory backup, click Home Directory. When you back up your home directory, the backup file includes the following files:

  • All of the files that you own. This includes any email for the domains that belong to your account.
  • Files that you do not own, but can access.

    Backup files do not include files from your home directory that you do not own and cannot access.

To exclude certain files and directories from a backup file, place a configuration file in your home directory. For more information, read our How to Exclude Files From Backups documentation.

Download a Database Backup

To download an account’s database, click the database name under the Databases heading.

Download Email Forwarders

To download email forwarders for a domain, click the domain name under the Forwarders heading.

Download Email Filters

To download email filters for an account, click the filter name under the System Filter Info heading.


The Email Filters backup file only stores the account-level email filters from cPanel’s Global Email Filters interface (cPanel » Home » Email » Global Email Filters). The backup file does not store user account-level email filters from cPanel’s Email Filters interface (cPanel » Home » Email » Email Filters).

Restore a partial backup

To use a partial backup to restore a portion of your account, perform the following steps:

  1. Click Choose File under the appropriate heading. For example, to restore a database, click Choose File under the Restore a Database Backup heading.
  2. Select the backup file from your computer.
  3. Click Upload to restore that portion of your account.

Additional Documentation