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12/08/2019

Restore Your WordPress Database with WP-CLI



This article is a follow up to a previous article on the process of backing up a WordPress database with wp-cli. You may want to read that article before this one.

In this article you will learn how to restore a WordPress database backup using wp-cli tool. Having this skill at your disposal is crucial for situations where you need to restore a backup in a pinch. This skill can be particularly helpful if you are testing major changes and need to revert back.

Pre-flight Check:

  • These instructions were created with a cPanel-based server in mind.
  • Command line access via SSH will be necessary to follow along.
  • The server must have WP-CLI installed, for installation directions see this tutorial.

Restore a Database:

  1. Login to the server via SSH as the cPanel user that owns the domain, or the root user.
    ssh wordpress@198.51.100.142

    In the example we are using ssh to connect to the server. You can follow the rest of the steps even if you connect via alternative means(TTY, a Windows SSH Gui, etc).

    If you login as root you will need to use `su` to take on the user which owns the WordPress site before you continue.

  2. Now logged in (as the cPanel user) change to the WordPress root folder:
    cd ~/public_html

    We’re using a cPanel server so we know WordPress should be installed in the `public_html` folder. If you are not on a cPanel server it will be in a different location.
  3. Once in the WordPress root folder (where you can find wp-config.php) you can use the wp-cli tool. To restore your database run one of the following command:
    wp db import ../my_wordpress_db.sql

Once you’ve run the export command you’ll see confirmation output like the following:

Success: Imported to ‘../my_wordpress_db.sql’.

Seeing the text above confirms your WordPress database has been restored. You should now double check that everything is loading correctly and verify that the restore fixed what you were hoping.

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