Backing Up an SMF 2.x forum

If you need to backup the data for a Simple Machines Forum (SMF) 2.x forum, you can backup the database used by the forum from within the forum software itself by the folowing procedure:
  1. Log into an account with administrator access to the forum.
  2. Click on Admin and select Features and Options.
  3. Click on Maintenance and select Forum Maintenance then Database. You will see the following information displayed:

    Backup Database

    Download a backup copy of your forums database in case of emergency.

  4. Leave these options checked:

    If you want the downloaded file compressed to reduce the size of the file, leave "Compress the file with gzip" checked, also. Click on the Download button to store a file containing all of the SQL commands needed to recreate the database for the forum on the system where you are using a web browser to access the forum. The file will be saved in whatever folder was selected for downloads, e.g., on a Microsoft Windows system this is typically a folder named Downloads under your user account. The file will have a name in the form forum_name-complete_YYYY-MM-DD.sql.gz (there will be a .gz file extension if you had the "Compress the file with gzip" option checked), where forum_name is the name of the forum. The YYYY-MM-DD will be the date with "YYYY" being the four digit year, e.g., 2016, "MM" being two digits representing the month, e.g. "04" for April, and "DD" being the two digit date, e.g., "09". The ".sql" in the name indicates that the file contains SQL commands which could be used to recreate the database with all of its tables and data.

The above steps create a backup of the database used by the forum - see Backing Up a Simple Machines Forum (SMF) database for steps you could use to restore that database from a command line interface (CLI) on the server where the database resides and also steps you can take to backup the files that are part of the SMF software on that server, also.


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