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The Undelete My Blog Project

Deleted your blog - by accident or on purpose? Want it all back? A resource site dedicated to helping bloggers in need, The Undelete My Blog Project will offer my limited expertise and even better, the collective wisdom of other , more resourceful bloggers in retrieving your precious posts from oblivion. There is hope yet. 

Blog Undelete Utility

Sunday, January 29, 2006

1:28 AM - Backup using Atom feeds

Prevention is better than cure. Or should I say, backup is better than undelete. I had mentioned some methods to undelete and recover your blog, but you should be lucky enough to have your blog in the search engine cache in the first place. To leave nothing to chance, I will describe a very simple way to backup your blogs on Blogger.

Every blog on Blogger has a unique ID. The first thing you should do is to find out yours. The ID is a short sequence of numbers, and different for every blog on Blogger. Then, goto this URL: https://www.blogger.com/atom/xx, replacing xx with your ID. You might be prompted for your Blogger username and password. Type them in and you will get the feed of all the posts in the blog whose ID you entered. This is an XML file and you can save it to your harddisk. Keep doing this on a regular basis, and you can be assured that next time you need it, you know where to find it. For easy archiving and retrieval, name the file with the date of backup.

Almost all blog services worth their name offer an RSS/Atom/XML feed to your posts. Although the above tip is specifically for Blogger, similar methods should also exist for others to backup their posts. Please leave me a comment if you know how to do this for other services.

Troubleshooting

If you did exactly as mentioned above and still did not succeed in saving the XML file, please checkout the following points.

1. Ensure that your blog has Atom feed publishing turned on.

2. Every blog has a different ID. If you have multiple blogs in a single Blogger account, you need to repeat the process for all your blogs separately, each with their own ID. To get a list of your blogs and their IDs, do the following:

Goto https://www.blogger.com/atom. Enter the username and password when prompted and you will get a list of all your blogs and their corresponding IDs. Use the ID of the blogs you need to backup and save them as separate files.

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Friday, January 20, 2006

1:43 AM - The search engine with the best cache

UMBP is designed to help bloggers recover their deleted posts through whatever means possible. As of now, it solely depends on using the cached copies of the blog on major search engines to recover the posts, as I am currently unaware of any other method that works. (Even that, I admit, is pretty rudimentary, but it is better than nothing!)

The Undelete through Cache Recovery utility uses two major cache sources for its working. The first one is the Google cache of course and the second one is the Internet Archive (The Wayback Machine). The latter is totally useless for relatively newer sites, which most blogs are, and therefore Google dominates in the utility usage.

A better cache than Google

Believe it or not, another search engine has a much superior cache than Google. It is the third one of the Big Three search engines, and that is MSN Search.

I know that it sounds controversial and indeed, counter-intuitive; after all, Google is the best search engine out there and has been so for some time. I do agree with that fact, Google is indeed the best right now. But I say this on my experience that I have in using the cache of both Google and MSN and also from some bloggers who had contacted me to help them out in recovering their deleted blogs.

Almost every blog worth its name is well indexed by MSN Search and you can recover the latest post from it within hours from posting it. The more popular your blog, the faster it caches. However, in spite of having a better index than Google, MSN falls behind in searching through them and that is why they are at a distant no. 3.

However, there remains a technical issue in adding MSN to the utility and I have sought advice from MSN in this regard. Hopefully, it will be resolved soon and you can have a better chance of recovering your deleted blogs using the undelete utility.

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