WordPress is pretty nifty. It will keep track of the edit history of any page as you work on it. It will even auto-save the document regularly (like Word does).

What this means is that your website is constantly backed up, and older versions of posts and pages can be resurrected with no fuss. Read this tutorial on the Revisions feature and never be afraid of change!

Enabling Revisions

  1. document-versioning-open-the-screen-options When you are editing a post or page of your website in WordPress, go to the top right-hand corner of the screen. You’ll see a tab that says “Screen Options”. Click it
  2. document-versioning-check-revisions The tab will slide down to reveal a panel that contains some checkboxes. Look for the option labelled “Revisions” and make sure it is checked. Then click “Screen Options” again to close the panel
  3. document-versioning-revisions-listing Now the “Revisions” panel will become available at the very bottom of the editor page. All revisions to this document are shown here, sorted from newest to oldest. Each entry shows when it was saved and by whom. A revision is saved any time you use the “Publish”,
    “Save Draft”, or “Restore” functions. I’ll get to “Restore” in a minute

Comparing Revisions

  1. Clicking on any revision will show you the contents of the post or page when it was saved. All HTML will be shown
  2. document-versioning-old-new-compare-restore Scrolling down will reveal the true power of revisions. All revisions are listed as they were on the editor page, with the addition of some new controls: Old, New, Compare, and Restore
  3. Old and New are columns of controls that let you select a revision for comparison. The revision you clicked in Step 1 is the one marked as “Old” by default. Go ahead and select anything more recent in the New column.
  4. Just for fun, click on the button above the two columns. It is labelled “Compare Revisions”.
  5. document-versioning-compare-revisions WordPress will display both versions side-by-side. The old, again, is on the left. The new is on the right. Deletions are shown in red, additions in green. This makes it easy to visualize the differences and get an idea of the edit history. You are free to copy out content that you want to extract
  6. If you’re not dealing with bits and pieces and want to wholly restore a prior version of your document, you can do that. Click on the Restore link of an old revision and it will become the current revision. Doing this will automatically restore the old document, create a new revision with it, and do a Save, all in one action.