Hostgator CodeGuard Basic – Worth it? Free Alternatives

Hostgator CodeGuard is a backup solution for websites. Unfortunately, it’s not worth it. True, the basic option is quite cheap, but it offers too little in exchange. It’s an additional paid add-on to the regular Hostgator hosting plans – click here for a list of Hostgator coupons. CodeGuard comes in 4 tiers:

PriceStorageNumber of SitesOn-Demand Backups
CodeGuard Basic $23.95/year 1 GB 5 No
CodeGuard Professional $99.95/year 5 GB 10 Yes
CodeGuard Premium $49.95/year 10 GB 25 Yes
CodeGuard Enterprise $239.95/year 25 GB 100 Yes

As you can see, the basic plan is pretty cheap, starting at $23.95/year. However, here’s what it doesn’t provide. Here’s what it doesn’t provide:

  1. No On-demand backups (Professional and above)
  2. Site change monitoring (Professional and above)

These two features are available in the more advanced plans as you can see in the table.

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Table of Contents:

Is the Hostgator CodeGuard Basic Worth it?

No. In my opinion, the basic Plan is very limited. Sure, they say you can backup 5 sites with unlimited files and databases. But you only have 1 GB to play with! There’s no way you’re going to keep the total size for multiple sites under 5 GB. To get any real value out of the backup, you’re going to need at least the Professional plan. Moreover, there’s no on-demand backup with Basic. Meaning you can’t take a snapshot of your site just before undertaking a major change in case something goes wrong. There’s no point paying for a backup solution that doesn’t allow for on-demand backups. So in my opinion, the Hostgator CodeGuard basic plan simply isn’t worth it. There are other, better alternatives which we’ll look at below.

Bluehost CodeGuard is Almost the Same.

Hostgator’s sister EIG company Bluehost has the same plan. But the pricing is a little bit different. Here’s a review of Bluehost CodeGuard, along with some better alternatives.

Limitations of Free Hostgator Backups

The reason why you need a 3rd party service like CodeGuard in the first place, is because Hostgator’s backup system is so bad as to be just slightly better than non-existent.

Like all other hosts, Hostgator has some form of free, automatic backup. Unfortunately, it’s far inferior to all the other web hosts. They take a random weekly backup of your site – and that’s it. You can’t even restore it via the admin panel. You have to call customer support. This free backup is limited to 20 GB and 100,000 files/folders. It’s ironic that the free service has a lot more space than the paid CodeGuard!

Hostgator CodeGuard Alternative: Other Hosts with Free Backups

Like I said, Hostgator comes last when it comes to automated backups. Here are some hosting providers who offer better automatic backups for free:

NameHero FREE Backups and Snapshots

NameHero is a pretty cool web host that offers the following backup tools for free:

  1. Nightly backups
  2. Snapshots on-demand that last for 7 days (JetBackup)
  3. Restoration without human intervention
  4. Unlimited restores

Here’s a full explanation of NameHero’s backup functionality with JetBackup. It allows you to take snapshots of your website and keep them for 7 days. Most other hosts charge for this. It’s why I recommend NameHero so highly. Check out my complete review of NameHero and a comparison of their plans.

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If you want more, you can sign up for their DropMySite integration for more comprehensive offshore backups of your files and databases for a small monthly fee.

As a side benefit, NameHero also uses LiteSpeed, instead of Apache. This makes their web hosting faster, and brings you additional features like server-caching. Learn more about LiteSpeed web hosting.

A2 Hosting Server Rewind

A2 Hosting has probably the most comprehensive backup plan that comes for free with all its packages. They call it “Server Rewind”. It provides real-time backups of all its hosting packages. That alone will save you around $50 a year that you would pay for a solution like CodeGuard! Here’s a complete list of A2 hosting coupons with prices starting from $2.99/month. Limitations: None!

InMotion Free Backups

InMotion hosting takes a backup of your site once every 24-36 hrs. You can request a complete restore via their AMP control panel. It’s not a comprehensive backup solution by any means, but it’s better than nothing. You also need to manually enable this functionality by sending an e-mail to support@inmotionhosting.com and including your verification like your AMP password or the last 4-digits of your credit card on file. Here’s a full price comparison of the InMotion Hosting plans. Limitations:

  1. Backups run only once every 24-36 hours
  2. Older backups are overwritten
  3. Need to specifically request a restore – no 1-click.

SiteGround Backups

Update: SiteGround has now upgraded its plans to allow the following:

  1. StartUp: Free restores
  2. GrowBig: Free instant backups

With these two changes, SiteGround becomes one of the most compelling hosts with free backup solutions. Previously, StartUp users had to pay 20 bucks for restoration.

Outdated:

SiteGround backs up all its hosting plans once every day. That sounds great. However, their basic StartUp charges $19.95 for each full restore. It’s free for the GrowBig and GoGeek plans. They also allow you to take “Instant backups” on demand. While it’s free for GoGeek plans, it costs $29.95 for the lower StartUp and GrowBig packages. Here’s a visual comparison of SiteGround’s free backup plans:

SiteGround Full Backup Comparisons
SiteGround Full Backup CompSiteGround Full Backup Comparisonsarisons

And here’s a complete comparison of SiteGround coupons for all their hosting plans. Limitations: 24-hr backups

Exabytes Backups

Exabytes is a special web hosting providers that offers free daily  backups for almost all its hosting plans. It’s pretty amazing, since it provides the service for free – a service that others charge for. These backups are kept for 14-days, and you can restore them with the click of a button. Here’s a list of Exabytes promo codes that you can redeem. Limitations:

  • Backups are kept only for 14 days
  • Not available with the “Startup” plan

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VERY Cheap Alternative for DreamHost Customers

A really cheap solution is to use DreamHost’s DreamObjects cloud storage. It’s dirt cheap at just 2.5 c/GB per month. And if you’re running WordPress, you can use the convenient DreamObjects backups plugin to schedule your backups as per your desired frequency. You can also specify how often you want older copies to be overwritten and everything.

Unfortunately, it’s only available to DreamHost customers. Which is a pity, since it would have been an amazing standalone service! It’s amazingly cheap and gives you all the power you need with backups as frequently as you want. No size limitations!

Best Paid CodeGuard Alternative: DropMySite

If you’re looking for an alternative paid solution to CodeGuard, I suggest DropMySite. I use it personally, and it’s great because of the following:

  1. Unlimited sites for the given storage space
  2. Cheap

All the other paid backup solutions charge you extra for each site that you want to add to the plan. Jetpack backups and CodeGuard both do this. DropMySite is the only solution that lets you add as many sites as you want and only charges you for the storage space. It’s why it’s better than both Jetpack and CodeGuard. Here’s a snapshot of the dashboard:

DropMySite Dashboard with Storage Space
DropMySite Dashboard with Storage Space

As you can see, the storage meter is the bar that fills up, and that’s the only thing you need to worry about. For the same price, CodeGuard gives you just 1 GB compared to 10 GB from DropMySite! That’s an amazing deal, and I don’t know why more people aren’t using it.

In addition, DropMySite has a tie-up with NameHero – mentioned above for their awesome backup service. You can get special pricing for DropMySite if you purchase it as an add-on from NameHero. So it’s a two-fold benefit. If you’re looking for a paid backup solution as an alternative to CodeGuard, I strongly recommend DropMySite.

About Bhagwad Park

I've been writing about web hosting and WordPress tutorials since 2008. I also create tutorials on Linux server administration, and have a ton of experience with web hosting products. Contact me via e-mail!

Comments

  1. Thanks Bhagwad,
    I’m going to check out Dream Objects. I have a blog that doesn’t make any money and am currently manually doing free backs ups to google drive. Need something better 🙂
    Julie

    Reply

  2. Oh, missed the fact that DreamHist needs to be your host…

    Reply

  3. We have a multidomain hosting baby plan with Hostgator. Without a backup option, it is going to be useless as data is added to the site daily.
    Is there any software that I can use to take daily backups from my Hostgator hosting? I need this so I can restore of something happens to the server, so it could really be a snapshot instead of a full backup daily.
    Thanks for any help in advance

    Reply

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