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If you have a VPS or dedicated server with WHM access, you can configure local backups on your server. This will allow you to maintain copies of your good data locally on the same server that you host your website with.

There are many options, some of which are explained below:

Backup Status -- This will either enable or disable your cPanel backups

Backup Type -- Selecting 'Compressed' will save disk space, but take a little more time, 'Uncompressed' is the opposite of 'Compressed', and 'Incremental' will only have one backup file, but any differences will be updated each time the backup process is run.

Retention -- This refers to how many backups will be kept for each timeframe allowed. For example, if you select to retain 3 backups on a daily basis on Friday you will have backups for Friday, Thursday, and Wednesday.

Files -- This section is where you will specify which users, and what additional data you would like to backup

Backup System Files -- While not required for user-level restoration, this option is recommended as it will help to restore various system settings.

Databases -- This allows you to adjust if you want your databases per account, the entire MySQL database directory, or both.

Configure Backup Directory -- This section has options for backup destination folder, mounting the backup drive if needed, and other options.

Setting local backup options

Using the steps below I'll show how we can set our server's local backup settings so that we have a backup copy of our entire cPanel account, stored in the /backup directory on a daily basis to roll back to.

  1. Login to WHM with root access
  2. Type Backup in the find box, then click Configure Backup
  3. Change Backup Status to Enabled
  4. Change Backup Interval to Daily
  5. From the Days to Run Backup section, check all days
  6. Change Backup Accounts to Enabled
  7. Change Backup Destination to /backup
  8. Finally click Save

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Related Questions

Here are a few questions related to this article that our customers have asked:
Automate weekly backups of VPS
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n/a Points
2017-08-28 1:33 pm

My VPS300 is 260gb. I am at about 200gb actually used. If I did a root backup of the server it will send me over my 260 which is not possible. Is this correct?

1,841 Points
2017-08-28 2:18 pm

Thanks for posting your comment regarding the limits of disk space and available backup capabilities. Yes, you are correct, the backup would exceed the available disk space for your hosting plan. This would result in an incomplete backup.

I would recommend checking your user's home folders for a ".trash" directory. If you have removed files/folders through cPanel's File Manager, it may have moved them rather than deleting them. Deleting the .trash folder deletes the data permanently, which will immediately be reflected in your disk usage. I hope this helps!

Carlos E
n/a Points
2015-09-02 3:15 pm

Where can I see the /backup folder?

40,748 Points
2015-09-02 11:07 pm
Hello Wendy,

In order to see the folder you would need to login to your server as the root user using SSH. You can then use the LS -alh command to look at the list of your files and folders. You should see the backup folder there.

I hope this helps to answer your question, please let us know if you require any further assistance.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2015-09-03 12:19 pm

Is there any way to access via FTP?

10,077 Points
2015-09-04 4:12 pm
Hello Wendy,

You could use the SFTP protocol and log in with the root user credentials to see that folder.

Best Regards,
TJ Edens
n/a Points
2015-07-22 6:01 pm

WHat if you are logged in with root access and still no backup?

40,748 Points
2015-07-22 6:46 pm
Hello Stephen,

If you're not getting a backup, there are several possibilities (e.g. no disk available disk space). You will need to submit a support ticket to have it investigated. Make sure that you do have the room on the server and that the interval period for the backup is NOT the reason you're not seeing the backup.

I hope this helps to answer your question, please let us know if you require any further assistance.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2014-11-20 12:32 pm

How are files and folders/directories which are only accessible to root backed up and where are they stored?

Each of my accounts websites are running the concrete5 CMS from a centralized location on the server.  Each account points to a common directory holding the latest version of concrete5.  How can I back this up since it belongs to no single account?  Example:  /usr/local/share/concrete5/concrete5.6.2.1/concrete

Also, how do I backup root directories that contain changes for files that change httpd.conf?


for example




30,497 Points
2014-11-20 3:06 pm
Hello JohnH,

Thank you for your question. You will need root access to view, and backup the files you listed. When you login as root you have access to all files/accounts on your server.

In the example above, you are changing the Backup destination to the /backup folder.

To backup your server settings (httpd.conf), be sure to check the box for Backup System Files after Step 7 above.

Thank you,
2014-10-14 9:06 am
Hi, What are your choices of Change Backup Destination to /backup ? Is it on your local server location?
11,186 Points
2014-10-14 9:11 am
You can set this location to wherever you want, but you want to make the location something that is easily accessed.
2014-10-14 9:21 am
How would I set it up to go to my computer or cloud?
11,186 Points
2014-10-14 9:26 am
This path would be the path on the server that you want your backups to be stored.
n/a Points
2014-10-13 11:35 pm
There is no backup link or whatever which is mentioned in the article.
43,761 Points
2014-10-14 7:47 am
Hello Stu,

That is correct. Features and tools that require root access will not appear if the account you are using does not have root access privileges.

Kindest Regards,
Scott M
n/a Points
2014-10-21 7:36 pm

So how do I get root access?

11,186 Points
2014-10-21 7:45 pm
To do so, you may request root access via AMP.
n/a Points
2014-10-21 8:18 pm

Thanks for your quick response. I have several websites that I host, so is my nameserver the one I use for WHM? Will it give root access for all the websites I host? Also will there be any interruption in service?


11,186 Points
2014-10-21 8:27 pm
Root access is across the entire server. The custom nameservers would be set up at the time that root access is provided.
n/a Points
2014-10-13 11:31 pm

How do you get root access

43,761 Points
2014-10-14 7:42 am
Hello Stu,

You can get root access by following the request steps in this article.

Kindest Regards,
Scott M
n/a Points
2014-07-19 8:19 pm

I went to my WHM and typed in backup as stated in step 2 but nothing was found for backup. I also did a search for the word "back" on the page and it only found "back to top".  Please advice.


30,497 Points
2014-07-21 9:46 am
Hello Kimberly,

Thank you for your question. As specified in Step 1, you must login to WHM with root access, in order for the additional features to appear.

If you do not have root access, you can still perform backups in cPanel.

If you have any further questions, feel free to post them below.
Thank you,

n/a Points
2014-07-21 4:30 pm

Hi, Thanks, guess I don't have root access with my WHM panel. 

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