Saturday, November 10, 2012

FAQ: I've deleted my website accidentally. How do I undo?

If you accidentally deleted your website, you need not to worry too much. You can still recover your site if you will act quickly. You can use your backup to retrieve it. In case you have not secured a backup for your site, don’t panic. Just relax. There is still a way!

One way of restoring your site is by using Google’s cache. The cache is considered a backup. When Google looks into a web page to determine if it suits a search query, it automatically saves a snapshot of the site. 

Using your Google search engine, you need to type “site:” followed by your website’s address (e.g., Click "Cache" to open the link for the cached version of your page. The cache will not work on PHP or other sites that use server side scripting. Google can only generate HTML codes. On the cached version of your page, the next thing you should do is to view your source code. Then, copy and paste your code into a test file in your account. Test your new file to know if the cached version of your page works. If it does, congratulations! You can now restore your website!

If Google won’t do, you can also try searching your page across all major search engines and expect that they still have a copy of it. Major search engines keep copies of web pages in their servers. You should also take note of the date of the cache. If you made changes after that date, everything that you've done past that date won’t reflect in the cache.

If you can’t find your website still, another good option is to use the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine. It is where you can browse over 150 billion web pages that were archived from 1996 to a few months ago.  You just have to type your site’s address there and select from the available archived dates where you want to start your search. It is the largest web repository that holds a backup of different web pages all over the world.

If your site has a database, it is harder to reconstruct. The first step that you should do is to re-install the host of your site. Then, you need to obtain your template back. You can also contact your original designer for some help with your template. If you are not familiar with the way your website worked, you must ask your programmer on dealing with this.

You might not get lucky next time so make sure that from now on, you should always keep a backup daily.  You don’t know what might happen next time, so always be prepared to avoid frustrations. It won’t hurt you if you keep one.

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