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What are the best software packages for automated backups for MySQL? Even more important than how easy the backup process is would be the restore process. If I ever get in a bind with data corruption or a failed device, I want to be able to restore everything quickly!

Any advice on what I should use/look for?

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Have a good look through the existing posts on server fault, the subject is well covered already:

Some examples...

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There is a bit of useful information in those answers, but surprisingly little about the specifics of architecting a good incremental database backup regimen. I don't have the time now, but I bet someone could get a good rep bump by writing up a very detailed set of instructions on how to do all this. (restore instructions too) – EEAA Aug 14 '11 at 0:34

Zip files located in database directory in mysql data folder. You can write a small script and cron it. It's good for small databases less than 100MB

If it's bigger consider a php system that sync row with updated value.

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Please don't do this without understanding some database basics first! Active databases are normally kept in memory (to keep them nice and fast). The contents of memory is only flushed to disk when it's suitable. Just zipping up a datadir of a running database will probably result in a corrupted backup and a painful time! Please read around on the subject, get a good idea of why exactly it isn't always straightforward to backup databases in a flexible manner. – Coops Aug 14 '11 at 0:07
-1. I'm with Coops. This is a horrible piece of advice. Anyone reading this, please don't do this. – EEAA Aug 14 '11 at 0:35
you can stop db server. – Ali Aug 14 '11 at 9:51
I don't really think zipping the database would be for me... – dingalingchickenwiing Aug 17 '11 at 13:21

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