Hostgator CodeGuard – Worth it? Free/Paid Alternatives

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Hostgator CodeGuard is a backup solution for websites. It’s an additional paid add-on to the regular hosting plans – click here for all Hostgator coupons and price comparisons.

It comes in 4 tiers:

Price Storage Number of Sites On-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.

Is the Basic Hostgator CodeGuard 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 has the Same CodeGuard Plans

Hostgator’s sister EIG company Bluehost has the same CodeGuard add-on. Here’s a comparison of the Bluehost cost for various hosting plans.

Limitations of Free Hostgator Backups

Like all other hosts, Hostgator also 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:

1. 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 plans with prices starting from $4.40/month.

Limitations: None!

2. 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.

3. SiteGround Backups

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 Has Free Backups

And here’s a complete comparison of SiteGround coupons for all their hosting plans.

Limitations:

  1. 24-hr backups
  2. Paid restoration for StartUp plan
  3. Paid “Instant backups” for StartUp and GoGeek

VERY Cheap Alternative – DreamHost DreamObjects

With the exception of A2 Hosting above, all the other “free” backup solutions have limitations. Either the backup is too infrequent, or it’s clumsy to restore, or they cost a lot (Looking at you SiteGround!).

However, a really cool 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.

In my opinion, this is one of the best backup solutions I can think of. It’s amazingly cheap and gives you all the power you need with backups as frequently as you want. No size limitations! I would personally use this solution if I didn’t have A2 Hosting!

Hopefully, this comprehensive analysis of backup solutions between hosting providers has given you a better understanding of the limitations of Hostgator’s CodeGuard. There are many other options for you to choose from, and I think they’ll better suit your needs!

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!

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