Sometimes, WordPress backups fail and restoring your many blog posts and pages can become a brutal challenge. Fortunately, archiving them using the Wayback (time) Machine can make them easily recoverable.
Sure, you can’t actually go back in time, but using the Wayback Machine isn’t far off. It archives public web documents to preserve human culture for future generations.
In this post, I’ll go into detail about the Wayback Machine, what it is, how you can use it to automatically or manually archive your blog posts and pages, and also how you can retrieve archived content. I’ll also show you a few plugins you can use for easy archiving.
The Wayback Machine is a three-dimensional index that archives publicly accessible web pages by crawling them, similar to search engines. It was created in 1996 as a non-profit project by The Internet Archive.
The Wayback Machine was named to reference Mr. Peabody’s WABAC machine from the popular cartoon Rocky and Bullwinkle. In the show, the machine was pronounced as “way back,” which is where the index got its name.
Archiving your blog posts and pages using the Wayback Machine can be useful if your site breaks and your backups fail. While you can’t archive all dynamic content, the text on your posts and pages are saved, which means you can copy and paste it into a new post.
You can recover the posts and content you’re missing while also contributing to a non-profit project. By archiving your site, you’re preserving information and artifacts from the cultures and heritages of humanity for future generations and civilizations. Future human beings can take a look at the Wayback Machine and everything that was archived so they can learn from us just as archaeologists uncover ancient artifacts so we can learn from the past to create a better future.
The Wayback Machine only crawls public web pages and can’t access content that’s password-protected or on a secure, private server. It also doesn’t crawl sites that discourage search engines from crawling them.
Popular sites that get a lot of traffic are automatically crawled, but you can manually archive pages in a few seconds.
The only prerequisite is that you need to make sure your WordPress website is set up to let crawlers go through your pages and posts. To ensure your site can be archived:
If you have any plugins installed and activated that have a similar setting, be sure to change it to let crawlers through.
Once that’s done, you’re ready to archive your posts and pages.
There are two main ways to archive your site using the Wayback Machine.
The first method is by typing
web.archive.org/save/ in front of the URL in your browser’s address bar. You also don’t need to omit the http:// or https:// at the beginning of the web address.
You can also go to the Wayback Machine Web Archive page and enter the URL of the page or post you want to archive in the field under Save Page Now. Then, Click the Save Page button.