Support » Plugin: UpdraftPlus WordPress Backup Plugin » SQL database in plain text

  • Resolved Matheron


    I am trying out Updraftplus.

    In the official Updraftplus FAQ, you explicitly state that “The database is backed up into an ordinary SQL (text) file“. Source:

    However, when I run an Updraftplus backup of my WordPress SQL database and download this backup locally, it seems always to have been compressed into a .gz format.

    The fact that I could decompress the file with e.g. 7-zip nothwithstanding, your current FAQ appears to be misleading, wrong, or both. I have looked through the Updraftplus settings, but cannot find anything regulating database backup compression.

    Would you please inform me how to use Updraftplus to backup the WordPress database directly into an uncompressed “ordinary SQL (text) file”?

    If this is not possible, would you please change your current FAQ?

    Thank you for a useful product.

Viewing 6 replies - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)
  • Plugin Contributor bcrodua



    Just rename the file from …db.gz to …db.sql.gz. It’s already an SQL file; all that needs doing is changing the name to fit one of the conventions that phpMyAdmin accepts.


    Thread Starter Matheron


    Thank you.

    However, changing the file suffix to of the database backup file should not work and does not work. Unsurprisingly, the file content will remain compressed, independently of the current file suffix.

    I simply want the Updraft database backup contents to be human-readable, i.e. stored in plain text. Sorry if I have been needlessly unclear.

    To view the file contents as a human-readable “ordinary SQL (text) file“, one first needs to decompress the file with e.g. a third-party solution like 7-zip. This solves the problem. However, it appears to be needlessly clumsy, as it forces a majority of users to rely on third-party solutions, just to see the backed-up contents.

    I would like to be able to open the backed-up database file with a text editor and directly see its contents in a human-readable, plain-text format. This is what I took your FAQ to say would be possible. But it is not.

    If Updraft would support optionally making database backups in plain-text format, that would facilitate for end users. If you insist on forcing compression, the next best thing could be to enable wrapping the entire backup in one single .zip (so that the complete wordpress installation may be unzipped in one single click), and the third best thing could be to compress the database separately, but in the more ubiquituous .zip format. Any of these options should increase compatibility and transparency.

    All this is said from the perspective of human-readability. Would this suggestion break something else? Would you consider implementing it?

    Thank you for a useful product.

    Plugin Contributor DNutbourne



    UpdraftPlus stores the database backup in a .gz file to compress the size of the database backup, and aid in upload/download to remote storage. Packing the sql file is also more secure, as it prevents the sql from being run.

    .gz is used as it is more efficient than a zip file, and is a standard for database management tools such as phpMyAdmin.

    However, the file inside the .gz is plaintext sql, and can be opened using any word editor.

    .gz is supported by most zipping utilities, including the standard Windows and Mac utilities.

    UpdraftPlus does not currently include the option to not compress the database backup. I will make a note for our admins to look into improving the wording of the FAQ to make this more clear.

    Thread Starter Matheron


    Thank you, that is clear. The benefits of compressing as such are fair enough.

    It still might be helpful for your users if the backed-up database could optionally be not compressed, or, if it need be compressed, to be compressed into the ubiquitous *.zip format.

    Tools for decompressing *.gz files may be “standard” for a few users. But the certainly are for the average user. The by far largest user platform, Microsoft Windows, never shipped with a native *.gz decompressing utility. Whereas it does ships with native *.zip decompression.

    Thank you once more. Please feel free to mark the thread as closed.

    @matheron — If you only occasionally need to produce an uncompressed database backup (for instance, if you’re troubleshooting and want to be able to go through your database offline), you can export your site database via PHPMyAdmin, which should be offered through your web host’s control panel. This isn’t a scheduled backup, of course, but it’s simple enough to do, requiring little specialized technical knowledge. (You do obviously need your database login information.)

    If you need to uncompress existing backup files, 7-Zip (a free and open-source compression utility) can handle gzip as well as various other compression types.

    Thread Starter Matheron


    Thank you.

    I can solve this problem. I just use 7-zip. My request was not about the technical possibility per se, but about end-user convenience.

    Every needless workflow step saved will count toward a smoother user experience.

    Some web hosts, like my previous, do not provide Phpmyadmin.

    Backupping Mysql database files in plain-text format is doable, since other free WP plugins, such as e.g. WP Vivid Backup, provide it out of the box.

    Tois is no dealbreaker, but still useful.

Viewing 6 replies - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)
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