Blog Database Getting Huge?

When your blog database gets to be around the 20 MB size – let me tell you what a trip to backup.

Start the backup process, go for a coffee (across town), stop at the gas station on the way home and fill up your tank, come home, do a load of laundry and then maybe – just maybe – the sucker is done downloading.

Then for kicks, try restoring said database. Or moving hosts. It’s all fun and games.

Here’s what you can do to get that database size more manageable:


Make a database and/or table backup before touching anything

Go Into phpMyadmin
Select the blog’s database (found in left column of phpmyadmin)
Note the tables, most should start with wp_ (for WordPress)

Look through the tables and see if there are any you can empty out (not delete – empty). The big culprits are stats program plugins and spam plugins.

I won’t touch my spam data because the spam plugins use past information to determine current spam. It’s in my best interest to keep that info in place.

But do I really need to keep the information some plugins store? Especially considering my database is getting to a size that’s not very manageable.

Here’s What To Do:

  • Select a table you want to empty
  • When table is selected (left column), click Browse (right column)
  • Look through the info and make sure it’s not something you need
  • Then click ‘Check All’ (towards bottom of page)
  • Then click ‘Delete’ (that big red X)
  • Do you really want to … Click yes at bottom (right corner)
  • Rinse & Repeat until table is empty

That will remove the data from that table without deleting the table itself.

Fast Method:

Select Database
Click the table you want to clean out (left column)
Click Empty (right column)
Do you really want to Truncate Table ‘insert name here’?
Click Yes
Poof – all data gone yet tables still intact

I wouldn’t advise emptying any of the standard WordPress tables – you really shouldn’t – but for your plugins, check the data out and delete if you don’t need to hold onto that info.

If you want to keep the stored data (just-in-case), backup or export the table data first and then delete.

I was able to shave my sql disk usage to a lean, mean 4.x MB and backups are a snap now.


I've been trying to find my way online for more years than I care to admit.