How to transfer a website smoothly

  • houndour
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi,

I normally post in the programming section and I know nothing of hosting, so bare with me.

We have a secure website that uses certificates, where we send a certificate to an individual and they have to install their certificate before they can access the site. So to do this we know we need a dedicated server with command line access.

We have decided to buy our own box...and this is where I'm getting worried as I am considered to be the most technical person on the team :s I may know how to program, but i know nothing about setting up a website.

Assuming I can install what I need on this box...PHP, perl, mysql etc...and I can get the certificates sorted. My question is can I have a smooth transition of the website?

So http://www.mywebsite.com is on Host 1
All the people are accessing it via the URL https://www.mywebsite.com

So lets just say I have the same website duplicated on our box, all ready to go. So now I guess I'd need to transfer the domain over? From previous experiences don't domain names get transferred when the people responsible feel like it? I mean we transferred our company site and the domain name still hasn't switched over after 5 days!! And they said 2.

We have a deadline which is when the original host is no more and so if the domain names don't switch in time then I guess the users will go to the site and it won't be there!

How long should we be giving ourselves to transfer it?

The other thing is this site has a forum, so if I don't know _exactly_ when the domain switches then unbeknown to me it'll switch over, and the users will use the forum...only some of their messages will be gone because I wouldn't have the most up-to-date tables.

Am I making a mountain out of a molehill? I'd really appreciate some advice, or rough steps of how to go about this.

Thanks,
Sam
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Post 3+ Months Ago

  • CartikaHosting
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Hi Sam,

I will outline this as best as I can....

1) Take a DB dump of all DB applications from your old host
2) take your DB apps offline (just for a few mins)
3) import your DB's to your new host
4) change your config files on your old host to point to your new host DB's - put your db apps back online
5) take all http content from your old host and upload to your new host
6) change all config files on your new host to match your new hosts setups (remember, your site is till being served from your old host, but all DB's are now running off of your new host)
7) set up all your email addresses on your new host - including the same passwords if possible
8) make your DNS changes
9) after propogation, check your old hosts web mail system for any emails that may have been routed there during propogation
10) cancel your old hosting account

Thats it - youre done.

Your site should never appear as down - however, during propogation, it may be served from your old host or your new host (depending on where the requests are being routed)

However, anything dynamic (ie DB driven) will be served from your new host after step 4 above - therefore you need not worry about synching DB's or anything of the sort.

Hope this helps...
  • houndour
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Thank you soooo much :)

That's exactly what I was after. I didn't even think of switching the DBs first. It's so obvious yet I completely missed it. Thanks.

Sam
  • MikeB2204
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Post 3+ Months Ago

If your going to be using cPanel and WHM on the new box, I've writen a detailed article on how to use WHM to switch accounts over. Not really sure if it will help, since I don't know what type of control panel you're using, but here's the link if your interested.

http://www.webmasterstop.com/61.html
  • CartikaHosting
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
Thank you soooo much

That's exactly what I was after.


Not a problem - let me know how it goes.

Quote:
If your going to be using cPanel and WHM on the new box, I've writen a detailed article on how to use WHM to switch accounts


Excellent resource - however, even for those switching from cPanel to cPanel - I would still recommend doing a manual transfer if possible. Definately more time consuming - but, these automated transfers dont always go so smoothly (or maybe I am just paranoid :) )

Either way, excellent article and thanks for making it available - Im sure many will find value in it.
  • meisam
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Post 3+ Months Ago

CartikaHosting wrote:
but, these automated transfers dont always go so smoothly

yeah, i had lots of problems moving the files from my old server to a new one.

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