Normally, I use drush to export Drupal databases. Mostly with 'drush bam-backup', after installing the Backup & Migrate module, or with 'drush archive-dump' or 'drush ard'.
Sometimes, backup & migrate isn't working and drush is not installed on the server.
Then the only option to make a decent backup of the database is with the command line, following these steps:
Browse to the file with the command line
Open Terminal and connect with ssh:
Export the database using mysqldump
Next, we export the database using mysqldump. It doesn't really matter where the database is stored:
mysqldump –u[username] –p[password] [databasename] > [dump file]
mysqldump –uroot –prootpassword db_test > db_test.sql
Compress the database with the tar command
Lastly, it's a best practice to compress the database:
tar -zcvf databasename.sql.tar.gz directoryname/
This creates an archive in the gzip format, with the verbose and filename flags.
This file can easily be imported in a MySql interface.