While using the dashboard today I’ve become convinced that Orion going to be way more slick to use that the original ManageWP, and ManageWP isn’t even really bad in itself. It’s just that Orion is looking more polished and I like feel of the interface over the original.
The biggest feature that is jumping out to me, however, is the new way ManageWP Orion handles backups. The new system is an incremental backup system. This is a major change in how backups are handled compared to the original ManageWP (and many other backup systems/plugins that are used for WordPress sites).
It does seem the trend in WordPress backups, right now, seems to be moving towards incremental backups systems. Other companies are working on similar technologies.
Why is incremental backup so great?
In short, with incremental backups, the system will only backup up files that have changed since the last backup – rather than backing up ALL of your website files each time a backup is run. For website installations using WordPress (or any CMS with lots of files) this is definitely a good thing.
Here is a quick screenshot of what the backup page looks like in ManageWP Orion.
I just set up this particular site in Orion, so this is a look at what a freshly set up backup will look like. As you can see the initial Orion backup ran right away after setting this up. The classic ManageWP backup that I have running also appears to be listed here.
The next screenshot is a look at the file tree. This shows you the files that are currently backed up.
Another thing I should note – as of this time you don’t need to have your own backup location, ManageWP Orion is backing up to Amazon S3 space provided by ManageWP itself. This isn’t a huge deal to me, but I would like to see the option to use my own Amazon S3 space to hold my backups, just for sake of file control. I think they mentioned they will add that down the road at some point.
With the incremental backups, each time a backup is run, ManageWP Orion will only backup files that are new or that are changes, which greatly decreases the bandwidth required to run site backups and reduces the file transfer times so server timeouts and other resource issues won’t be causing hiccups in the backup process anymore.
If you have any experience at all in trying to run full site backups on weekly basis (or maybe even more often) you will probably have run into issues with backups not completing from time to time. In my case, this was usually due to connection timeouts or other connection issues while uploading huge backup files from the web server to the backup server.
This can be very frustrating. WordPress sites can get very “large” quite easily. By that, I mean, there are just a ton of files to start with in WordPress anyways, and when you add themes, plugins, content, photos and more to your website, the amount of files (and the overall size of your site) increases very quickly.
I’m going to have to keep checking out Orion a little more often now, it’s starting to come together nicely.