Recovering data from expired account

Hi, I wonder if you could help me.

My domain and dreamhost accounts expired whilst I was away. Unfortunately I appear to have lost all the data held on my blog (which was the only thing I ever hosted or used my account for). I can still ftp and log in to my account, but I can only see “uploads” under WP Content, and these uploads are just photos I already have copies of, not the text.

Is there any way to access this data (I assume it’s still there)? It’s really important as this blog was an online diary of what my prematurely born son was going through in the first months of his life, so I must get it back! I can’t renew the account as I don’t have $119. I know I should’ve kept a backup, and I realise it’s all my fault.

Can anyone help? The data could be there I just can’t find it!

You should contact DreamHost about this (you will still have panel access, I would think). If no backup exists, you may be able to retrieve all or some of your important data from

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Thanks for the reply, I’ve tried and there’s no data there unfortunately.

I’ve also tried contacting support (you’re right, I do still have panel access) but it doesn’t seem to be working. I get as far as “Select the type of problem you’re having”, check the box for “website” and then click next and I’m automatically returned to the “Select the type of problem you’re having” page again. So I’m stuck in a loop.

I’ve still got FTP access, but can’t find the data there either.

Try checking Goodies -> Manage Mysql, and see if the database you used for the WordPress blog is still there. IF it is, you are in luck, as you can grab the data by exporting the database.

Also, even if didn’t help, don’t forget the Google cache! Google for any pages from your site, and click the “cached” link for any that are found, and save away.

I once recovered an entire “memorial site” for a user who had lost everything in a major system crash this way. :wink:


Thanks! It looks like the database is still there, although I can’t see how to export the data (the option isn’t immediately obvious).

Theses are the options listed:

-Add a new user to your MySQL database “n_blog”
-Restore backups of your MySQL database “n_blog”
-Modify your MySQL database “n_blog”
-Delete your MySQL database “n_blog”.

Good! Okay, here’s how to proceed:

  1. Above where the database is listed on that page, you should see a “hostname” and there should be a link adjacent to that for phpmyadmin.

  2. Click that link, and login using the database username and that database user’s password

  3. When phpmyadmin loads, at the top of the leftmost frame, you will see a pulldown box with database names in it. Select the link for the database name that holds your wordpress blog data (in your case, “n-blog”?)

  4. The left frame will refresh with a list of links representing the tables in that database, and the right frame of the page will now refresh with that database’s structure displayed.

  5. Click the “Export” tab at the top of the right-hand frame, and when the frame refreshes, click the “select all” link under the “Export section”, and select the type of export you want (to reload the data in another WordPress blog, select "SQL) by clicking the appropriate radio button.

  6. You can change any “SQL Options” desired, but the defaults should be fine (you may want to increase the "maximum length of created query if you have a large blog).

  7. Check the “checkbox” labeled “Save as file”, modify the “filename template” as desired (set’s the filename for the export), and decide if you want compression ( your choice, for windows, use “zipped” if you want, etc.), and hit the “GO” submit button.

  8. Your bowser should prompt you to open or save the file - select “save” and save the “download” to your computer.

  9. Whew! If you did everything correctly and if all worked well, you will have that file on your computer after the download completes. Breath a sigh of relief, have a cup of coffee, and let me know that “It Worked”.

How to load the data into another WordPress or access it in another way is another lesson. For starters, You may also want to “export” it in a different format, just to be “sure” or to have it in another format.


Erk! I’ve fallen at the first hurdle I’m afraid! You see the hostname has also expired, so the phpMyAdmin link doesn’t work.

Is it possible to change the hostname somehow?

I really appreciate your help!

I think you’re not going to be able to go down that route. Try creating a free dreamhosters subdomain - that may allow you to restore proper panel access so that you can use the support ticket system.

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Arguugh! Just try one more thing:

instead of using that link to your host to reach phpmyadmin , try instead:

and let us know what happens.



I tried the link instead of the link and I got in. I was then able to follow your (very handy) instructions and export the data. I’ve exported one copy as a word file so I’ve still got the text from the blog which is great (that’s what I was most worried about).

I’ve also exported various other versions as you suggested.

Now, as you say, all I need to do is figure out how to rebuild the blog elsewhere. Is it too much to hope that it will also be possible to save off the pictures (I’ve still got access to these and can download them) and simply put the blog up elsewhere looking exactly the same?

A huge thankyou. You’ve been incredibly helpful and I can now officially relax!

If it is a WordPress blog, you may be able to export it to (free blog accounts).

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That’s great news, and I’m glad you were able to get the data. :slight_smile:

First of all, go get those pictures while you can, then worry about getting a blog back up!

Simon has a good idea about; if you have the pictures, the worst case scenario might end up being you have to manually add the pictures back.

You may want to search these forums, and the site,for more information about “moving” or “migrating” WordPress, as pictures “hard linked” into posts will have your old URL in the “img src” tag, so you may have to do some editing. There is some discussion of that in previous “moving wordpress” posts on theses forum and on the forums, as well as descriptions of the whole process involved.

Actually, I think the codex and support forums do a much better job of explaining all of this than I do, so at this point, since you have your data, I suggest taking a break and doing some reading so you understand better what is involved in resurrecting a WordPress blog on another host.

This is also a good time to review the phpMyAdmin documentation re. importing/exporting data from MySQL databases. Once you get a better grasp of what is happening, you will be better equipped to develop a “redeployment strategy”.

All that said, with the database export you have, and the downloaded contents of wp-contents/uploads directory (or wherever on your server your uploads were stored), you will likely be able to rebuild the whole thing.


Thanks again for the information. I’ve made a copy of the WP/Contents/Uploads directory and I’m in the process of checking out the wordpress site. I really appreciate everyone’s help and I’ve certainly learned to make backups!