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Author Topic: SMF admin panel backup is crap! Can we have a patch release to remove it please?  (Read 33293 times)

kat

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At least something is better than nothing.

Actually, I disagree, with that.

If it's unreliable, it's worse than nothing.

Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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I meant it for the free hosting users. We could just have it as an addon would be the quickest fix.

For users with paid hosting and permissions to backup their database more efficiently, we should definitely look for an alternative.

kat

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Why bother, though?

CPanel has everything you need.

Why take up space with something that really isn't necessary?

Especially as you need CPanel to restore it, anyway.

Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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Because FREE hosting services use something called vista panel or lxadmin or their custom control panels which don't have everything. This backup utility is a benefit for them.

Now, talking from the marketing point of view, I don't know how many forums run under free hosting with paid domains or free domains such as .tk or .co.cc or use subdomains. Roughly 5% around the world would be a guess. Now, do we want to take away that advantage from those 5% users using SMF?

kat

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So, how would they restore these backups?

Seems they can't. So, again, why bother saving a backup that they can't restore?

Offline Sir Osis of Liver

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If the backup function works properly in a specific hosting environment, is it possible for the software to detect the host platform and only show the backup option to users on a compatible host?


Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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So, how would they restore these backups?

Seems they can't. So, again, why bother saving a backup that they can't restore?
AFAIK, I think that backup is given in .tar.gz format? You extract it and an .sql file pops out. You go to phpmyadmin and restore it there. Sometimes, there is even .tar.gz support in phpmyadmin which lets you use that straight away. So, upload it using the import area and done.


If the backup function works properly in a specific hosting environment, is it possible for the software to detect the host platform and only show the backup option to users on a compatible host?


It is not just the hosting platform (I suppose you mean control panels and permissions set?) , but we could possibly make use of the phpinfo details and show up a warning if the variables set by the hosting company may not be suitable for a good backup copy to be generated. Again, some hosting companies disable phpinfo by default and users have to enable it using their .htaccess. So, that may be another issue to tackle.

Offline Sir Osis of Liver

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You go to phpmyadmin and restore it there.

If user has to restore it with phpmyadmin, why not backup with phpmyadmin?  Why bother risking a bad backup with a balky function that, more often than not, doesn't work?


kat

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So, they need to learn phpmyadmin, anyway.

So, as I said, the backup's superfluous. As they need to learn about phpmyadmin, they might as well backup, there, too.

NINJAD! :)

Offline IchBin™

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I say we ditch it like the plague. There are far better tools out there, and there's really no need for us to reinvent the wheel in trying to fix it. Backups should be done on the host level, not the forum level IMO. And yes, I've shouted about this before too.
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Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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See it from this point of view:
- A free hosting user with no access to phpmyadmin can not backup their database or they have to pay for it.
- They use the backup utility and backup their database.
- They then go to another free host that can restore their database and continue further with their forum OR a paid host with access to phpmyadmin and they restore the backup themselves.

This gives room for free users to at least use possible work around.

So, ditching it doesn't seem very viable unless it can be used as a modification to perform backups from the next major release.
Fixing it does seem viable, but it won't be fixed in the core software until the next major release and that is if the devs decide to do it.

Encouraging users to use the right tools if available would be the best way ahead right now.

PS: I am not against your ideas, I am just trying to look at both the sides and suggest the best way ahead.

Offline Chalky

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So how about simply adding a message to the Backup option saying "This tool is unreliable - please do not use if other options are available to you"?

Maybe I'm being simplistic but this would cover all options....

kat

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From where I see it, that just makes SMF look silly(er) for putting something unreliable for something that is, after all, critical.

Offline Chalky

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That depends if you think something silly looks less silly just because you don't point out that it's silly ;)

I agree that it should be trashed altogether if it doesn't work properly but as F.L.A.M.E.R.  seemed so adamant that there is justification in keeping it, I was trying to find some middle ground

kat

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Reading through the topic, F.L.A.M.E.R. seems to be in a minority of one, thus far. ;)

Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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I am all for trashing it really. :) I am just thinking it from all users perspective. :)

Offline Kindred

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actually, except on a site with several million posts, I have never had an issue with the internal backup function.

and Flamer raises a good point ---    it is a way for folks with free hosting to GET their data in order to transfer it to another host or install a test forum locally.
So, I am against ditching it completely.

It should either be corrected to work better or perhaps replaced with an external (third part, predesigned) function
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kat

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Seriously, I think dumping it, totally, would be of great benefit for our users.

We can point them to the wiki, to learn how to backup, and we won't get any more "****** my backup's useless!" posts into the bargain.

Offline IchBin™

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Most free hosts that I ever looked at removed the option to even use the database backup section, as well as the option to install mods and themes. So I'm not sure the free host option is really a valid one at this point.
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Offline Adish - (F.L.A.M.E.R)

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Ichbin,
The free hosts you are talking about are the one's with SMF already pre-loaded. I am talking about the free hosting services which allow you to use your own paid domain or .tk or .co.cc or their sub domain. There are thousands of free hosts out there like those. They don't have any restrictions except putting an advert on the forum.