Backup Options in Catalyst Theme

Backup OptionsThe Feature of the Week series returns after a short break and this week I’m going to look at some of the Backup and Restore functionality that is provided in both Catalyst Theme and the Dynamik Child Theme options.

Note that this functionality is not an alternative to plugins etc that backup and restore the WordPress database (or indeed whole site).

Instead it provides some very useful options that can be used in a variety of ways to save, backup, restore and copy the theme settings.

Let’s look at some of the main options provided.

Catalyst Core & Advanced Settings

The Import/Export settings in the Catalyst Core options enable the Catalyst Core settings to be exported as a file and kept for future use.

This means that all the settings for structural elements of the site design, like the Header layout, Navbar structure, Content options (for Site Layout, Breadcrumbs, Meta Display content etc), the Footer Area, SEO options and so on, can all be saved (using Export) and re-used (using Import) as needed.

For example, the Export file can be used either as a backup of the core settings for the site concerned in case of disaster, or alternatively as the basis of the layout for a different site altogether.

Catalyst Core Import Export SettingsCatalyst Core Options – Import/Export Settings

Also included in this Import/Export functionality are options to save and/or restore the settings for each of the Advanced Options – the Custom Page Layouts, Custom Widget Areas, Custom Hook Boxes and Custom CSS settings.

The degree of granularity provided here allow for comprehensive backup up of all the structural options and settings for the site, or let you exclude those elements you don’t require.

Likewise you have the choice to import just the settings for the Core options to structure the layout for a different site, while excluding the Custom Widget Areas and Custom CSS of the original site.

Dynamik Child Theme Settings

The Import/Export options for Catalyst Core and Advanced settings allow the structural and layout settings for the site to be saved.

All the hundreds of style and design settings in the Dynamik Child Theme that help determine the look and feel of the site can similarly be exported using the Import/Export Tab of settings in Dynamik as shown here:

Dynamik Import Export SettingsDynamik Child Theme – Import/Export Settings

As with the Export file for the core settings, the Dynamik Theme Export file can be saved for backup purposes and imported back into the same site in future if needed.

If images (uploaded with the Dynamik Image Uploader option) are used as components of the design (e.g for the Body, Header, Navbar or Footer backgrounds say), these too can be saved in the Export file.

Because the Export file therefore contains all the design settings for the site, it can be used to ‘skin’ a new site with the same look and feel by importing it into that site.

The Export file containing all the Dynamik settings information is called a Dynamik Skin and enables you to copy a design you like from one site across to one or many other sites quickly and easily.

Once imported into the new site, you can leave the design alone as per the skin settings, or use it as a basis to work off, customizing the new site by further adjustment of the various Dynamik settings as desired.

In the next post, I’ll look at the other backup related options provided in Catalyst and Dynamik.

Have fun!


David Pritchard is the author of the Catalyst Theme Cheat Sheet – the 250+ page guide that helps users make the most of Catalyst Theme. Licenced Catalyst Theme users can get their FREE copy in the downloads section of the Catalyst Theme forum.

David also has a site that with guides to using Catalyst Theme, WordPress, SEO, internet marketing techniques and other topics at