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UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator: We Found a Winner 

Written By: author image Joella Dunn
author image Joella Dunn
Joella is a writer with years of experience in WordPress. At Duplicator, she specializes in site maintenance — from basic backups to large-scale migrations. Her ultimate goal is to make sure your WordPress website is safe and ready for growth.
     Reviewed By: John Turner
reviewer image John Turner
John Turner is the President of Duplicator. He has over 20+ years of business and development experience and his plugins have been downloaded over 25 million times.

Are you not sure how to choose between UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator?

As a website owner, backups are an essential part of keeping your site safe from data loss. At some point, you may also need to completely move your website to a new server. Using the right plugin, you can back up and migrate your website without any struggle. 

This post will compare two popular WordPress migration and backup plugins: UpdraftPlus and Duplicator!

What to Look for In a WordPress Backup and Migration Plugin

If you want to start backing up or migrating your website, there are plenty of WordPress plugins available to you. To get the best one, here’s what you should look out for:

1. Manual and automatic backups

A beginner-friendly plugin will make it easy to create website backups. You’ll also be able to set schedules to automatically back up your site at a certain time. 

2. Cloud storage

To reduce strain on your hosting plan, you can send backups to off-site locations like Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive.

3. Restore options

Backups are of no use unless you can restore them. The best plugin will allow you to replace a broken site with an error-free saved copy. 

4. Simple migration features

Although migrations can be daunting, the right plugin will perform this service in just a few steps. 

5. Support for Multisites and large websites

A basic WordPress migration plugin will only be equipped to handle small to medium-sized sites. If you’re planning to migrate a larger site, the plugin will need to easily package large files. 

6. Customer Support

Like with any plugin, you’ll also want your software to come with stellar customer support. This way, if you experience any difficulties you can quickly get answers. 

UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator: Compared

With all of the different backup and migration plugins out there, it can be difficult to narrow down your options. If you need help deciding between UpdraftPlus and Duplicator, we have your back. Let’s compare these two popular plugins so you can decide which one is right for you!

Features: UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

First things first, you’ll want to know what each plugin does. Let’s take a look at the main features included in UpdraftPlus and Duplicator. 

Duplicator

Duplicator is a comprehensive tool for backing up, migrating, and even cloning websites. Because of its capabilities, Duplicator is used by over 1.5 million users:

Duplicator plugin

Here are just a few of the features included with Duplicator:

  • Complete WordPress backups
  • Automatic scheduled backups
  • One-click backup restore
  • Cloud backup storage to Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon S3, Microsoft OneDrive, FTP/SFTP, and more
  • Drag-and-drop site migrations
  • Supports Multisite networks and large sites
  • Custom search and replace
  • cPanel integration
  • Server-to-server imports
  • Compatible with managed web hosting providers

UpdraftPlus

Similar to Duplicator, UpdraftPlus can perform backups and migrations. It’s a popular tool for beginners to handle WordPress maintenance without any complex coding:

UpdraftPlus plugin

Here are some of the main features of UpdraftPlus:

  • Scheduled and manual backups
  • Incremental backups
  • Backup restore options
  • Remote storage options to Rackspace Cloud Files, Microsoft Azure, Amazon S3, and more
  • Cloning and migration
  • Pre-update backups
  • Supports Multisite

Ease of Use: UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

Especially if you’re a beginner, it’s important to only install plugins that are easy to use. This way, you won’t waste time trying to figure out how to back up or migrate your website. Let’s compare UpdraftPlus and Duplicator to see which has more user-friendly functionality.  

Duplicator Ease of Use

One common maintenance task you’ll need to perform is a website backup. With the Duplicator plugin, you can easily create a copy of your website whenever you need to. This is called a package, which will contain all your WordPress files and database information.

Simply navigate to Duplicator Pro » Packages » Create New. Give the backup a name and select a storage location:

Duplicator backup storage locations

If you want to save the backup off-site, Duplicator supports many third-party cloud storage services including:

Then, feel free to customize the archive file. Essentially, this is the file that compiles your database, plugins, themes, and core WordPress files:

Duplicator custom package components

Editing the archive file is a useful step when you want to limit what data is saved in a backup (like a database backup). For entire site backups, don’t make any changes.

After you hit Next, Duplicator will scan your site. This ensures that your content will be backed up successfully. If there aren’t any issues, continue with the build:

Duplicator package scan

Now you’ve backed up your WordPress website! To download it, find the Packages page and click on Download » Archive (zip):

Download archive zip file

You’ll then have a moveable copy of your site downloaded onto your computer. This can easily be migrated to another location or simply saved as a backup in the case of an emergency. 

UpdraftPlus Ease of Use

UpdraftPlus also has built-in backup options. Once you install the plugin, go to UpdraftPlus » Backup/Restore and click on Backup Now:

UpdraftPlus backup

Then, you’ll have a few options to customize the backup. If you’d like, exclude the database or your WordPress files:

UpdraftPlus backup customization

After creating a backup, it’ll be listed under Existing backups:

UpdraftPlus existing backups

You’ll see different options for downloading your backup. You can save copies of your database, plugins, themes, or uploads. 

Although UpdraftPlus provides fewer steps in the backup process, you won’t have as many opportunities for customization. Plus, Duplicator provides a useful site scan that ensures your website is backed up correctly. UpdraftPlus provides separate backup files, while Duplicator has one compressed and optimized zip file.

Backup Restore Options: UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

At some point, you might accidentally lose data to an unexpected error, server crash, or hack. Although this can be scary, a backup plugin can help you quickly restore your website to normal. 

Duplicator Backup Restore Options

Once you create a backup with Duplicator, you’ll see a Restore button next to it. Click on this whenever you need to instantly roll back your site to this version:

Duplicator restore button

This can be useful if you want to try out new changes. If something doesn’t turn out the way you want it to, you can restore a previous backup.

If a catastrophic error locks you out of your dashboard, you can’t access this restore button. Fortunately, Duplicator also supports disaster recovery.

Before anything happens, click on the disaster recovery icon next to a backup. Keep in mind that this needs to be a full backup that’s stored on your local server:

Duplicator disaster recovery

After you set disaster recovery, you can save the recovery link or download the launcher.

Disaster recovery link

After something goes wrong on your site, simply paste the URL into a browser window. You can also open the recovery launcher file. Both of these methods will launch the Duplicator recovery wizard even if your website is down:

Disaster recovery

After accepting the terms and conditions, hit Restore Backup. You’ll need to confirm that you want to install this older version of your site:

Confirm Duplicator recovery installation

Then, simply use the Admin Login button to access your site again:

Duplicator backup recovery

You’ll notice that Duplicator replaced the broken website with an error-free WordPress backup!

UpdraftPlus Backup Restore Options

With UpdraftPlus, you’ll only be able to restore your backup from the WordPress admin dashboard. To do this, click on Restore next to the most recent backup:

UpdraftPlus restore backup

Then, select the data you want to restore. UpdraftPlus will give you the option to deselect any plugins, themes, uploads, or database information:

UpdraftPlus restore backup components

If needed, you can choose which database tables to exclude from the restoration. Next, hit Restore again:

UpdraftPlus restore database

Now UpdraftPlus will restore your backup. It’ll notify you if it’s successful:

UpdraftPlus successful restored backup

You can click on Return to UpdraftPlus configuration to go back to your restored WordPress dashboard. 

UpdraftPlus provides a simple way to restore your website from the dashboard, but it might not be useful after critical errors. If you want to make sure your data is always safe, we’d recommend using Duplicator’s disaster recovery. This will allow you to recover a backup even if you can’t open your dashboard. 

Migrations: UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

Duplicator and UpdraftPlus are both capable of moving your website to a different host or domain name. But which one is better?

Duplicator Migrations

Fortunately, Duplicator makes migrations very simple. Start by creating a package of your site. Then, download the archive file the same way you saved a backup earlier.

On a second site, install and activate the Pro version of Duplicator. After this, navigate to the Import page. You can then drag and drop your archive file into the import box:

Import website archive

Once the package is ready to install, click on Continue:

Duplicator imported package

Then, hit Launch Installer to start the migration:

Launch site installer

Now Duplicator’s installation wizard will walk you through the rest of the migration process!

Alternatively, you don’t even need WordPress installed. After downloading both the archive and installer files, upload them to the new website’s root directory:

Upload Duplicator package to FTP

Then, all you’ll need to do is paste this URL in a browser window: https://your-domain/installer.php

Be sure to edit this to include your new site’s domain. This URL will launch Duplicator’s installer:

Duplicator deploy installation

You can then follow the step-by-step instructions on how to install your original website. This process can be useful if you’re setting up a local site without installing WordPress first. If you develop websites for clients, you can quickly migrate them to any server whenever you need to.

UpdraftPlus Migrations

If you want to migrate a site with UpdraftPlus, you can restore a backup on a different WordPress installation. First, create a backup of your live site and download it. You’ll have to manually download each part of the backup:

UpdraftPlus download backup

Then, install UpdraftPlus on the second site. Find Existing backups » Upload backup files. Here, upload your original site’s backup files:

UpdraftPlus upload backup

Now you’ll see the backup listed at the bottom of the page. You can hit Restore to replace the default WordPress installation with your saved backup. 

For a direct server-to-server transfer, you’ll have to purchase the UpdraftMigrator add-on. This is included in UpdraftPlus Premium. 

By upgrading, you can send a backup to another site. To do this, install UpdraftPlus Premium on the second site. Then, click on Receive a backup from a remote site.

Receive a backup from another site with UpdraftPlus

Next, create a unique key for the site and copy it.

UpdraftPlus create migration key

On your original site, paste the new key to add the second site as the destination.

UpdraftPlus migrate backup to another site

Now you’ll be able to transfer a backup from the first site to the second one.

With UpdraftPlus, you have to connect two websites and give them permission to send data to each other. This process can take more time than Duplicator’s simple drag-and-drop migrations. Duplicator also doesn’t need WordPress to be installed, making migrations fast for developers.

Pricing: UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator

Even if one plugin does everything you need it to do, it may be out of your price range. Especially if you’re a blogger or small business owner, it’s important to compare the cost of UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator. Let’s take a look!

Duplicator Pricing

You can download a free version of Duplicator from the WordPress Plugin Directory. Duplicator Lite has over 1 million active installations and a 4.9-star rating:

Duplicator Lite

With this version, you’ll be able to back up your site. By uploading the archive and installer files to a new server, you can also easily migrate or clone your website.

If you need more advanced features, Duplicator Pro starts at $49.50 per year. Even this basic plan supports unlimited backups and migrations. You’ll also take advantage of scheduled regular backups, recovery points, cloud storage, drag-and-drop migrations, and more.

UpdraftPlus Pricing

Like Duplicator, UpdraftPlus provides a free plugin. You’ll have backup and restore options, as well as automated backup schedules:

UpdraftPlus Lite

However, UpdraftPlus Premium costs a minimum of $70 per year. With the basic personal plan, you’ll only get one UpdraftClone token. If you want to clone your site often, you’ll have to purchase additional tokens. 

UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator: Pros and Cons

Let’s round up a quick overview of UpdraftPlus and Duplicator so you can compare them!

Duplicator

Pros:

  • Migration, cloning, and backup features
  • Automatic backup schedules
  • Free version
  • Easy drag-and-drop migrations
  • Compiles all website data into a single zip file
  • Many cloud storage integrations
  • Recovery point URLs for restorations without dashboard access
  • Supports Multisite and large sites up to 100GB
  • Developer hooks
  • Smart migration wizard

Cons:

  • The free version requires some technical expertise since you’ll have to upload files to a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) client.

Duplicator Pro is a powerful and useful plugin for anyone who manages a WordPress site. It provides simple ways to back up and migrate your data. This makes it a great option for complete beginners.

Plus, Duplicator has many features designed for developers and users with more technical experience. It provides developer hooks, custom search and replace, and regenerate salts so you can customize the plugin to do whatever you need it to. 

UpdraftPlus

Pros:

  • Beginner-friendly interface
  • Free version
  • Migration, cloning, and backup features
  • Automated backup schedules
  • Multisite support
  • Incremental backups
  • Automated backups before updates

Cons:

  • Separate backup files for database, themes, plugins, and uploads
  • No developer features
  • More expensive than competitors
  • Limited UpdraftClone tokens
  • Restore options only available from the WordPress dashboard

UpdraftPlus can be an effective backup and migration plugin if you’re new to WordPress. Without too many customization options or extra steps, you can easily create copies of your site and move them to other locations.

Although it might initially seem like a good option, UpdraftPlus isn’t as flexible as Duplicator. You can get more advanced features with the premium version, but the plans are generally more expensive than similar plugins. 

UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator: Which Should You Choose?

Now that we’ve fully compared UpdraftPlus and Duplicator, let’s decide which one is best.

FeatureUpdraftPlusDuplicator
Automatic backupsYesYes
Cloud storageYesYes
Restore optionsYesYes
Drag-and-drop migrationsYesYes
Multisite supportYesYes
Large site supportNoYes
Empty site supportNoYes
Off-site backup recoveryNoYes
Free versionYesYes
Developer featuresNoYes

We’d recommend Duplicator Pro as the best backup, migration, and cloning plugin. It allows you to download your entire WordPress site as a zip file, which can then be saved as a backup or migrated to another server. 

Although UpdraftPlus has some beginner-friendly features, its paid versions are expensive. Additionally, add-ons like UpdraftClone use a token system. If you’re planning on cloning your website more than once, you’ll need to purchase a higher-tier plan.

In comparison, even the cheapest Duplicator plan supports unlimited backups and migrations. There are also plenty of tools for developers to customize backups, set up staging sites, and more.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the alternative to UpdraftPlus?

Duplicator Pro is the best alternative to UpdraftPlus. This plugin includes comprehensive features to create backups and migrate websites. It even offers advanced developer support and drag-and-drop migrations at a much lower price.

Alternatives: BackWPup, BackupBuddy, BlogVault, WPvivid, and Jetpack (VaultPress) are some of the best WordPress backup plugins. For migrations, you could consider All-in-One WP Migration

Is UpdraftClone free?

No. You can start using UpdraftClone by purchasing tokens. Alternatively, UpdraftPlus Premium comes with tokens, but these plans start at $70 per year. 

What is the best backup plugin for WordPress?

The best backup plugin for WordPress is Duplicator Pro. You can use it to create manual backups or automate hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly backups. It supports a variety of cloud storage locations, allowing you to secure your data against critical errors or hacks.

What is the difference between UpdraftPlus and BackupBuddy?

While UpdraftPlus has a free version, BackupBuddy is a premium tool. You can upgrade to UpdraftPlus for $70, whereas BackupBuddy starts at $99 per year. UpdraftPlus will only give you a limited amount of UpdraftClone tokens, but it also includes incremental backups and supports WordPress multisite.

To see more BackupBuddy features, read our BlogVault vs BackupBuddy vs Duplicator review!

What is the best way to back up a WordPress site?

The best way to back up a WordPress site is to install a WordPress backup plugin like Duplicator Pro. With this plugin, you can schedule automated backups and even send them to off-site cloud storage locations. Duplicator can also help you migrate your site to a new host, server, or domain name, making it an extremely flexible tool.

Conclusion

We hope this guide helped you choose the best backup and migration plugin.

While you’re here, you may also like these extra WordPress tutorials and plugin reviews:

Want to easily move your website with a simple drag-and-drop interface? Download Duplicator Pro today!

author avatar
Joella Dunn Content Writer
Joella is a writer with years of experience in WordPress. At Duplicator, she specializes in site maintenance — from basic backups to large-scale migrations. Her ultimate goal is to make sure your WordPress website is safe and ready for growth.

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