That really depends on where the bottleneck is in your environment. If you can do that first, you can save yourself a lot of time and money.
Here are a few things you can try. Depending on the instance of your server
and computer, some of these suggestions will have a bigger impact and be more financially and logistically feasible than others.
- Get faster network/Internet connection for your Moodle server.
- Get faster network connection for your computer.
- Ensure that your server is running on SSD drives, not hard drives.
- Ensure that your server has a lot of free disk space.
- Increase the amount of memory in your server.
- Increase the number and speed of the CPUs in your server.
- Consider replacing the videos in your course with versions that are optimized for web in order to reduce their file size.
- If your server is running Windows, consider switching to Linux.
- If you are running Moodle in a shared hosting cloud environment, consider upgrading to a virtual private server (VPS).
- If you are already running on a high performance VPS, consider moving to dedicated hardware and not running in a virtual machine.
- Consider putting your database on a separate server from your web server.
- Instead of downloading individual files (like videos), do a course backup which will create a single compressed .mbz file containing your whole course which you can download.
- Consider splitting your course into smaller courses. It may not make downloading faster but it will make it easier to upload into another instance of Moodle.
- Ensure that the storage media on your computer is not formatted as FAT or FAT32 which have file size limitations that might prevent you from being able to store your large course backup file locally.
- Try downloading your course during a period of time when your Moodle site, infrastructure and Internet are not so busy. One might assume that the middle of the night would be ideal but you might be surprised at all the backups and maintenance that go on during the early hours of the morning.
- Backup your course from the server's command line and then transfer the backup file to your computer using FTP or SCP. It may not be faster but it will most likely be more reliable as you won't be subject to potential PHP timeout issues.
Hope you find something helpful out of all of these ideas.