Moving WordPress -part one- plugins

There are many reasons you may want to move  your WordPress site  be it your moving  from your  development server  to a live  server , you may want to move to a cheaper or better host.

There are many reason that you may want to do this  so in Part One of  moving  Wordpress I want to discuss moving a site using  plugins now Im well aware  that You can do this manually but to be honest  from past experience when the plugin  system works  its by  far faster  to process a move  using one of the 3 bellow plugins.

The  first  Two I have  first had experience in and have found them  quite  useful  the 3rd I have not  tried  so I can only make a passing  comment on this but  the  first  two would be my main picks for this form of moving a site  in part  of Moving WordPress I will go into  how to  move  your site manually.

Bearing  in mind that  there are a few servers  such as  fasthosts and others such as godaddy that these plugins wont work on  for share hosting  most of the time on any  host this is due to restriction placed by them on there  servers  which Is  supposed to be for security reasons in most cases when managed correctly this is not the case

Duplicator (free)


duplicator  offers a three step move process. once the plugin is installed you will  find a link to the management page with in your plugins list

duplicator managelink

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

its normally  good practice  to start by checking the compatibility of your servers bellow is a image of  what  this may look like, check out more information on at this link Duplicator

duplicator test   3 Plugins For Easily Migrating A WordPress Site, Tried & Tested

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/


once  you are stasified  with this  go ahead and create your first package. Packages are the contents of your database and files, all wrapped up in one. Click the create button in the top right, after you have clicked create the system  will  go to  work on  createing a package you can  view the log if  you wish.

duplicator package downloads

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

There are  advanced options under the settings panel where you can email yourself when the package is completed   you can choose to  exclude  some  directories and file extensions  and pre-populate the installer fields .

once you have created  your package  you will want  to upload both the installer and package to  your new site via ftp the installer does exactly what  it says on the tin it  installs  your  existing  site  to  your new server duplicator tries its best  to replicate your entire set up for you  from  databases to WordPress files- the first  time I used this software I installed WordPress before using it  only  latter to realise that I did not to  install WordPress to my new server  the system had  done it all for me.

once  you have  uploaded the package and the installer  and navigated your browser to the  location of  your  installer.php file on the new domain  you will find  your self and a screen  similar  to the one  bellow

duplicator installer first

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

all you need to  add is the DB access details; Duplicator can create the individual tables, you will still require a mysql user and database set up for it to use.  check the db  conection and accept the disclaimer now  your ready to install.

duplicator installer

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

the system even allows  for the optional reactivation of certain plugins

duplicator active plugins

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

Finally  you will need  to select  options for rewriting your permalinks and deleting the installer (make sure you remove this once you are  done as it can leave a major security loop hold in  your  site if you leave it there.

I have read  reviews on this  plugins its a mixed bag to be honest  some  have no problems others  are not  so lucky, when moving a site to be honest I have had a mixed experience of this plugin  some times it has been a quick and simple system to use and others  it has been something that has taken me hours to complete leaving me in a position where my client  is unhappy or I am  just frustrated a couple of times this was due to the  host I was using  others it was  just bad luck.

I would  say its a good plugin when it works  but does require some technical knowledge so not  for beginners.


Backup Buddy (Premium, from $80)

the  process  of backing up and restoring  a WordPress  site is not  a millions miles away  from the migration process  so I was not surprised  when I first  came across back up buddy that the system also allowed  for  site migration this plugin  in my experience is a joy to use yet again  dependant on if your  host  supports it properly I have recently had a client  who was with fast hosts  shared  hosting and as said before there system does not allow for the  use of back up buddy .  all you need to  do with  back up buddy  is follow there rather  simple setup  process  on the settings page

bb password set   3 Plugins For Easily Migrating A WordPress Site, Tried & Tested

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

before  you can move  your site  you will need to  create a back up  choose the complete back up option and begin  this will create a complete back up of your site  and its database  once done  here go to the restore/migrate area, and select automated restore/migration. Hover over the latest backup and an option to “migrate this backup” should appear.

bb backups list

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

you now need to setup a new target where the back up is to be sent to you can adde  ftp details and confirm they are working using this should the  send over  your files to your new server there are other options but this seems the simplest

From this point  the  process is  almost identical  to duplicator  you can  chose a  manual install option which will offer a “importdubby.php ” and back up file  to download seems familiar  with this option you  would then  upload the files  via ftp  to the new server  during the process you enter  your DB details  the system  will  finally  clean up by removing the install  files no muss no fuss I say.

bb importbuddy script

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

bb database setting

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

backupbuddys migration process  is very  similar  to that of duplicator  so  compared  purely as a paid for and free plugin Duplicator  wins out to be honest in my experience I have used  duplicator on  at least 3 sites and backupbuddy the same  and I have found  that backup buddy produces  less errors  and needs less trouble shooting as a rule. however  don’t forget  with back up buddy you also have  access to  the backup functionality of the plugin. if  you  just want a system that will allow  for migration  go for  duplicator  but it can be frustrating to use.

WordPress Move (Free)

Ive  used this plugin before but had very little  luck with it at all  it is yet again a free plugin

when installed, WordPress Move adds a Migration Assistant link under the Tools sub-menu. It present 3 options:

  • Change domain (no files will be moved)
  • migrate
  • Restore

if you are using  migrate, you  need to configure the plugin from the settings sub-menu. this involves adding FTP access details for the new site.

You also need to have WordPress  and wpmove installed  on your new server to migrate your site using this both duplicator and backupbuddy  do this for you  so I was a little disappointed

wpmove settings

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/

once you have done the process of installing  Wordpress and WPmove  to  your new server you will need to head back to the old site to being the process Type your ftp password, new domain name, and press start migration when I did this I experienced a error I tried  a lot of things to get this to work  but had no luck  after  several tries  I just gave  up as I think i had been sat there  for nearly 30 mins getting errors


wpmove failed

Image taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/


all images  on this  post  were taken from http://www.makeuseof.com/ who’s post  about  ,migration plugins first  lead to my  use of  duplicator and wp move  I have only  recently  purchased a  copy of backup buddy  and have  used it  ever since and had no problems thank you  to James Bruce for his post .

Coming soon  Part Two manually moving WordPress 

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