WordPress: Make Major Page and Post Edits Safely

If you’re like me, since the Gutenberg editor came out with WordPress 5.0, every time you edit an old page or post and see that “Classic Block,” you have trouble resisting the temptation to click the “Convert to Blocks” link.

Maybe you just have some major edits to do on an old page, or you want to convert a post with a whole slew of individual images to a Gallery Block.

If you leave WordPress’ revisions enabled, you’re already in pretty good shape; however, in order to keep my WordPress’ databases as small and streamlined as possible, one of the first things I do when installing WordPress is to disable revisions. I needed another way to prevent major edits from becoming major hassles.

Fortunately, WordPress makes it easy to create a backup of a single page or post, and you don’t even need an extra plugin to do it.

Copy All Content

WordPress Kabob Menu

Most likely, you already have all you need to back up a single page or post before a major edit: WordPress and your operating system’s basic, text-only editor.

First, become familiar with the Kabob menu in WordPress’ editor. The Kabob menu is the menu accessible via the vertical ellipsis (kabob) at the top-right of the WordPress editor screen.

Click the “Copy All Content” link near the bottom of the Kabob Menu, then paste the content into your favorite text-only editor; e.g., Notepad, Gedit, etc.

Save the resulting file either as a text file or with an .htm extension.

Go ahead and make your edits. If you’re not happy with how they turn out, or want to revert to the original version of the page or post, simply copy the contents of your backup file and paste them into the Code Editor, also accessible via the Kabob menu in the WordPress Editor.

It sounds more complicated than it actually is. Once you’ve done it a couple of times, you’ll see how easy it is to prevent that sinking feeling you get when a major edit goes horribly wrong and you only have database backups.