According to BuiltWith, WordPress CMS has the largest share in the CMS market.
However, WordPress websites are usually targeted by hackers, and other cybercriminals who look to either infect their websites with malicious codes or take over their administration.
If such happens to your website, you get to lose all the hard work and time that you put in building your WordPress site.
Fortunately, a WordPress backup plugin can help you to quickly recover or restore your website whenever a compromise occurs.
In this post, I will place two popular WordPress backup plugins, i.e. UpdraftPlus and Duplicator in a tussle. In the end, I will show you the most reliable to use.
What Is UpdraftPlus?
UpdraftPlus is a popular WordPress plugin for site backup, restoration, and cloning. It is ideal for site owners that want to keep their site safe from errors, server crashes, hackers, and the likes.
At the moment, UpdraftPlus is used on over 3 million WordPress sites. Some of their popular users include NBA, Microsoft, Cisco, and P&G.
Thankfully, UpdraftPlus is supported by a team of experienced WordPress developers and experts.
What Is Duplicator?
Duplicator is a backup plugin developed by SnapCreek. Though there are several WordPress backup plugins available out there; however, Duplicator is a relatively easy-to-use tool.
Interestingly, the Duplicator backup plugin is the backup plugin of choice for more than 700,000 WordPress site owners.
Likewise, the plugin is available in two versions: Duplicator Pro and Duplicator Lite version. As you would presume, the Pro version is the paid version, while the Lite version is available for free with limited features.
Now that you have an overview of what both plugins are, let’s look at Duplicator vs Updraft by comparing their features side by side.
How To Install
UpdraftPlus has both free and premium versions, and the mode of installation for both is different. The free version can be installed from the WordPress plugin directory, which can be accessed from the ‘Add New’ menu under Plugins from your WordPress dashboard.
Simply search for “UpdraftPlus” and install the plugin before you activate it. For the premium version, you have to pay for the plugin via the UpdraftPlus shop, download, and then install it from your WordPress dashboard.
It’s a more lengthy process but still comfortable. Not to mention, you can install the free version and upgrade to a paid one.
The Duplicator plugin is available for download and installation in the WordPress plugin directory. From the ‘Add New Plugin’ section, you can search and install it, but this is only for the free version.
The paid version is available only on the SnapCreek website, and you can download it only after registering and paying for your preferred premium plan.
Afterward, you can navigate to your WordPress dashboard and install it from the ‘Add New plugin’ section. Then, you can activate it once the installation is done.
The installation process for both the Duplicator and UpdraftPlus are the same and relatively easy to carry out.
Site backup is one of the three major features of the UpdraftPlus plugin. In fact, UpdraftPlus can back up large sites as there is no limit to the number of files and databases you can back up.
It can backup a site with a size up to 100GB. If there’s any limit, it will only be set by the web host.
Additionally, UpdraftPlus is compatible with multi-sites. Also, you can carry out differential and incremental backups by scheduling the plugin to backup site files at intervals.
You can schedule backups daily, weekly, monthly, or at any specific time.
Likewise, UpdraftPlus can make auto backups before any core WordPress, theme, or plugin update.
Duplicator is a plugin for WordPress backup, so there are several backup features to explore. It supports large databases such as SQL files, and the backup files are packed in a single file for easier management.
While the Duplicator plugin can backup large sites, up to 100GB sites, you can set a backup limit based on your web host limit. Apart from backing up a standard WordPress website, you can backup multi-site websites with Duplicator.
Furthermore, there are tons of advanced options for customizing the backup. You can filter the intended backup data to backup specific files, directories, extensions, etc. and you can schedule backups at different times.
In this UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator feature comparison category, UpdraftPlus takes the upper hand with support for differential and incremental backups.
External Backup Destinations
UpdraftPlus enables you to back up your site files to several external storage locations including Google drive. Other destinations include DropBox, Amazon S3, Rackspace, FTP, Email servers, DreamObjects, Openstack Swift, etc.
If you opt for a premium version of the plugin, you have additional external destinations to back up your files. Apart from the supported destinations in the free version, you can also back up to OneDrive, Azure, SFTP, WebDav, SCP, Google Cloud Storage, Backblaze, etc.
These external backup destinations can be set under the Settings tab from the UpdraftPlus dashboard.
There are external backup destinations supported on Duplicator. However, you can only connect to these external backup destinations to store your website files if you are a premium version user. There’s no such support on the free version.
You can backup to DropBox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Amazon S3, cPanel, FTP, and SFTP. In fact, the supported external backup destinations on Duplicator are the major and most reliable ones out there.
UpdraftPlus is the winner here as the plugin has many external backup destinations than Duplicator. Besides, Duplicator doesn’t allow backup to external destinations with the free version.
Security & Optimization Features
When it comes to security, UpdraftPlus is a reliable WordPress backup plugin you can count on. The database backup you generate can be encrypted to keep them secure.
As you transfer backup data to external storage destinations, the data is encrypted during the transfer process to prevent leaks.
For optimization, UpdraftPlus logs all backup operations. As the backup is in progress, you will be notified of any warnings or errors encountered via the status panel from your WordPress dashboard.
You can debug the errors to discover fixes. Also, UpdraftPlus lets you manage your site’s SSL certificate.
The area of security is one where the Duplicator plugin lacks. There are fewer features to keep your website backup safe; besides, no data encryption is supported.
The most you get with the Duplicator as regards security and optimization are the email notifications. If there are any issues like errors or the likes with the site backup, you get notified by email immediately so you can take instant action.
There’s no debate in this Duplicator vs Updraft comparison section. With database encryption, UpdraftPlus offers more security and optimization features than Duplicator.
Restoring site backups with the UpdraftPlus plugin is relatively easy. You can restore the backups manually or automatically from the UpdraftPlus admin dashboard.
From the admin dashboard, navigate to the settings section and click the restore button. A list of the available backups will be listed, and typically, you would want to install the latest one. With just one click, the restoration will commence.
You can carry out single file restoration from file backups. Just as the data files are encrypted during backup, they will be encrypted during the restoration process.
Duplicator is more focused on site migration – switching web host – than restoring backup files on the same host.
However, Duplicator requires an empty database to work so if you’re restoring, all the existing databases are erased. This can be done using the Overwrite Live Site option.
The only way to restore your website while maintaining previous databases is by creating a new and empty database, and not all web hosts support this. If yours does, then you can customize the backup data to overwrite after installing the backup file.
Restoring site backups is more efficient and quickly done with UpdraftPlus.
With UpdraftPlus, you can migrate your WordPress website to a new location. However, this can be done only with the UpdraftMigrator – a premium add-on that comes with the UpdraftPlus paid plans.
The UpdraftMigrator is simple to use. Apart from migrating websites, it can be used to clone WordPress sites as well.
If you intend to migrate a site, all the data in the new site location will be erased.
To migrate, simply upload your existing site backup to the UpdraftMigrator and install the UpdraftPlus plugin with the add-on on the new website. Activate the plugin, download the uploaded backup and then install/restore it.
While restoring, you can select specific content by ticking the boxes. This includes themes, media, plugins, etc.
As stated earlier, site migration is the second major feature of the Duplicator plugin. In fact, site migration with Duplicator requires a simple 2-step process – import and export.
On your existing website, you can backup your site data, while from the Data Tab under Tools, you can export it with one click. The exported file is saved as a .dup file.
Next, you can install and activate the Duplicator plugin on your new site. Again, from the Data tab under tools, you can import the site with one click. Click on the import button and select the .dup file from the saved location and install it afterward.
In terms of site migration, both Duplicator and UpdraftPlus are reliable.
UpdraftPlus might not have a specific feature for website cloning, but it can carry out such a task. Cloning involves duplicating a new website using the data of an already-existing website such that both sites appear the same.
To clone a site with UpdraftPlus, you should use the UpdraftClone, which comes with its premium version. However, UpdraftClone only supports the cloning of a single website, while the cloned data is usually hosted temporarily.
Apart from using the UpdraftClone add-on, you can use regular backup and installation to clone a website. However, for this method, you need to have admin access to the website you intend to clone.
Duplicator is a plugin for WordPress site backup, migration, and “cloning”. Interestingly, the Duplicator plugin allows you to clone single websites as well as multisite, themes, plugins, etc.
However, the Duplicator plugin works for cloning the traditional way. This implies that you have to create and download the backup file of your website (in .dub file format) and upload it to the database of your new web server.
However, before uploading, ensure that you created a new database. This is to ensure that the new installation does not wipe off the previous sites’ data.
When it comes to site cloning, Duplicator is a better plugin compared to UpdraftPlus.
UpdraftPlus has no support for developers at the moment. Thankfully, UpdraftPlus incorporates few developer features including data encryption, SSL certificate management, and troubleshooting if any error is encountered
With the regular license (whether free or paid), the plugin is closed source. In fact, no contributions can be made by external developers, only by in-house developers. Hence, it is not surprising that the plugin doesn’t have any page on GitHub.
Just like UpdraftPlus, the Duplicator plugin has few developer features. SnapCreek made this plugin, not for developers, but for WordPress site owners to migrate or backup their websites.
For Developer features, you can consider a tool like Backupbuddy over Duplicator. It offers several Developer features like DB Mass Text Replacement, Serialized Data, and WordPress Cron.
Notwithstanding, some features would interest developers. For instance, the Duplicator Power tools incorporate features like installer branding, installer salt, key replacement, etc.
Also, there is a Duplicator development page on GitHub. You can join as a developer and add new contributions to improve Duplicator.
Both platforms can easily pass as equals. None is better than the other when it comes to Developer features.
Before now, we’ve looked at the external backup destinations supported by UpdraftPlus. Some of these include DropBox, Amazon S3, Google Drive, OneDrive, Azure, SFTP, WebDav, SCP, etc. All of these count as third-party integrations.
But, UpdraftPlus still supports more. In fact, it works with other backup plugins, including BackupWordPress and BackWPup.
Interestingly, UpdraftPlus seamlessly integrates with other Updraft tools such as UpdraftClone, UpdraftMigrator, UpdraftCentral, UpdraftVault, and WP Optimize. Thankfully, they can be managed from an account, and available for use as add-ons from the UpdraftPlus admin panel.
Unlike UpdraftPlus, Duplicator lacks when it comes to third-party integrations. Supported third-party integrations include DropBox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Amazon S3, cPanel, FTP, and SFTP.
Hence, the Duplicator backup plugin has a relatively low score in this category. Not to mention the supported external backup destinations are only available for paid version users.
Duplicator might not have many third-party integrations, but its developer-friendly API enables users to connect the Duplicator plugin with other websites/platforms.
With support for more external backup destinations, integration with other backup plugins, and seamless integration with other Updraft tools as add-ons, UpdraftPlus wins in this category.
Customer Support & Resources
UpdraftPlus provides enough support and helpful resources for its users. They have a support center that allows users to submit a support request via a contact form. However, this option is only available to premium users.
Nevertheless, there are other means of getting support including a WordPress forum, video tutorials on YouTube, and an FAQ page that doubles as a documentation page. Likewise, UpdraftPlus provides technical support, but this is limited to premium users.
For a quick search in the support center, the featured search option is enhanced by Google. UpdraftPlus also features a blog where news and updates are posted.
The Duplicator support team can be reached by submitting a support ticket. However, users can get self-support by making use of the available documentation page.
The documentation page contains user guide articles, quick start articles, general FAQs, and Technical FAQs in sections for easy navigation. To make the articles even more comfortable to comprehend, the majority of them include demonstration videos.
Additionally, there is a blog featured on the plugin site and other resources as well.
With almost the same support channels, there is nothing much to differentiate Duplicator and UpdraftPlus in terms of customer support. However, Duplicator takes the upper hand as support is not open for all users.
UpdraftPlus offers both free and premium plans unlike some of its competitors. This makes it available to all.
- Free Plan – $0 per year
- Personal Plan – $70 per year
- Business Plan – $95 per year
- Agency Plan – $145 per year
- Enterprise Plan – $195 per year
Like UpdraftPlus, Duplicator has free and paid plans, which include:
- Free Plan – $0 per year
- Personal Plan – $59 per year
- Freelancer Plan – $79 per year
- Business Plan – $129 per year
- Gold Plan – $359 per year
Note: The costs for the premium plans vary from time to time.
Similarities & Differences
- Both UpdraftPlus and Duplicator are easy to install
- Both UpdraftPlus and Duplicator are backup and site migration plugins
- They both have a free version
- Both support multi-site
- Both Duplicator and UpdraftPlus support external backup destinations
- They both use the contact form support method
- Unlike UpdraftPlus, Duplicator has fewer external backup destinations.
- UpdraftPlus free version supports external backup destinations, unlike Duplicator.
- UpdraftPlus is more optimized for security compared to Duplicator.
- Duplicator has fewer restoration features compared to UpdraftPlus.
- Free and paid Duplicator users can reach their support team, while for UpdraftPlus, only premium users can contact their support team.
- UpdraftPlus supports more third-party integrations than Duplicator.
Pros & Cons
- Easy to install
- Free version
- Multi-site support
- External backup destinations
- Third-party integrations
- Contact form support only for paid users
- Support for only a single website cloning
- No developer features
- Easy to install
- Free version
- Multi-site support
- External backup destinations
- No external backup destination supported for the free plan
- Fewer security features
- Less third-party integrations
- No direct backup restoration
UpdraftPlus vs Duplicator – Which Is Better?
As you can see from our comparison, UpdraftPlus takes the upper hand and is the winner.
Unlike Duplicator that incorporates primary backup and site migration features, UpdraftPlus has more features for an all-round WordPress site backup, restoration, and cloning. Not to mention, UpdraftPlus is more secure thanks to its database encryption feature.
Additionally, UpdraftPlus supports more external storage location and third-party integrations. Hence, UpdraftPlus is a better WordPress backup plugin than Duplicator.