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Transfer a Development Site at Bluehost to the Live Site at Dreamhost

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In this session we demonstrate how to transfer a development site at Bluehost to the live site at Dreamhost using BackupBuddy. We show how to create a database, test the database setting, update the themes and plugins and double check if the site is working. We also check the general settings for privacy options to allow search engines to index the site and get rid of any custom codes that reference the old site so that it’s only referencing the new site location.

Video Transcript

So what I’m going to be doing is going through the process of copying a site that is on a development server at Bluehost using Backup Buddy and I’m going to move that site to its final server at Dreamhost. And so I’ve demonstrated this before with different hosts but Dreamhost is quite a bit different than say Bluehost is. And so I wanted to just demonstrate how you would do that on Dreamhost.

Now this is a site that people who have been attending lately have seen a fair bit of, that is this Cheesemonger’s Table that I have helped a friend of mine, Kim Carney, develop for a client. And it resides on a development server at which is my development server that is located on Bluehost. And so what we’re going to do now is copy this using Backup Buddy and then we’ll take that copy and we’ll transport it over to Dreamhost and create an exact copy of it over at Dreamhost.

Okay so the first thing we’re going to do is to install Backup Buddy on this site. Ok so, we’re going to install Backup Buddy on this site. And so we go to Plugins and add new and we’ll upload Backup Buddy from my site… I mean, from my computer. Let’s see… Backup Buddy and install it. Activate the plugin and then I am going to quickly set some settings up on it. Let’s see, I’m going to give it a password and then I’m going to make sure that we… let’s see, okay we’re going to use all… we’re going to backup all tables and we’re going to exclude cgi bin from this so we’re only going to collect wp admin, wp content and wp includes. And then I think that’s it. We’re going to save these settings and then we’re just going to go directly to back up and we’re going to do a complete backup. Let’s see, I have just created a backup file which is a complete file of the entire file system and database. And so I have that ready for us to download and I’m going to go ahead and download this file.

And then once I have this file downloaded, we’re going to upload it to Dreamhost. We’re going to use Dreamhost Web FTP to upload it to Dreamhost and then go through the rest of the process here. If you’re a Dreamhost user and you’re at the… let’s see, you’re at your main site or main location, what we did was I came over to the… let’s see, manage users. Oh, I was trying to get back to the… so we’ve got our Cheesemonger’s Table set up here as our domain and let’s see, what does it look like when I just… oh, this is where I thought I was going to, right. So we’re here at our thing that’s logged in and we want to see what our ftp information is.

So we can just come on over here to users and then with our user, we’ve got this ftp account that’s set up. And I’m going to use this web ftp login as the means of logging into that account and I’m actually logged in here. And it looks like that backup is now fully downloaded… just to make sure. Yeah, that backup is fully downloaded so we’re just going to come in here to the Dreamhost ftp client and we’re going to say upload from our computer. And we’ll browse to the download site or the place where it’s located and that is backup of right there. So we’ll go ahead and open that up… oh the file is too large to upload that way. Okay so instead, what we’re going to have to do is set up a… we’re going to have to set this user up here and use Filezilla instead.

And so the ftp host name is this up here. So we’ll say host, ftp host name. The username is marman73 and the password is… port is 21. Let’s connect and see what happens. Okay, it worked fine. So then what we want to do here is go to my… we want to go to… let’s see, downloads is what I want. So users Rick downloads and then backup of cheese.tailoringtheweb. We want… and Cheesemonger’s Table here so we’ll edit right there, upload that. So our file was 16 megabytes in size which meant that it was too large to be able to use their web ftp client to upload it so we’ll use… we just configured Filezilla quickly to be able to do that. The host name, in this case, is and the username and then the password.

I’m guessing… I don’t know for sure whether or not all of the… I’m not sure if all of the ftp host names are the same but that is the ftp hostname for this user in particular. And you see I’ve got web ftp Dreamhost but that’s not actually the correct hostname if you’re using your file manager… I mean, if you’re using ftp client.

So let’s see how we’re doing here. Well, we’re about 31%.

The other thing we have to do while we’re here so we may as well do it is create a database. And so the host name is mysql so let’s make sure that we remember this. And then we’re going to create a database name and let’s just call it… we’ll call it cheese. And then we’re going to create a new user for this and we’ll call it… and then we’ll create a password. Okay, we’ll go ahead and add a comment here saying The Cheesemonger’s Database. Okay, we’re going to add that database. Okay, there was an error. Okay, the database name is… we’re going to call it cheesemong, see if that works. Okay, we’ll just say… and then… oh, I was changing the wrong thing. So we’ll change the name to cheesemong for user and the database name. Let’s try that. Okay, there we go.

So now we have a database called cheesemong and that has the username… and we’ve got new passwords. So we’ve got those things created. Let’s look and see whether or not our… okay and our file is all the way up there.

So one other thing I forgot to do is get the import file so let’s get the Import Buddy file. Okay so it’s Import Buddy 15 then let’s just refresh this. Let’s upload that over there. Okay, Import Buddy 15 is up. I need to rename it by getting rid of that 15. This is the case because I have so many copies of Import Buddy actually sitting on my hard drive here. But… so I just needed to make sure. We’ll just call it Import Buddy PHP here on this place. But with this zip file and Import Buddy PHP in the root directory now of Cheesemonger’s Table, we are ready to run the installation routine. And we’re just going to go ahead and… let’s see, okay so we’ve got our… that stuff set up.

So what we’re going to do is open up a new window and type… what is our host… I mean, what is the name of our… give me just a moment. I just want to make sure I get the name of our thing right. I think it is The Cheesemonger’s Table. But give me just a second… no, it’s is the name of it. So we go to Okay so that’s the Import Buddy file we just uploaded. is the place where it’s loaded to. We hit that and it’s going to bring us up to the Backup Buddy installation routine here.

Okay so the first one thing we do is insert that password that I created. Okay and so we’re going to do it from this stored backup. Let’s just check our server information here to make sure that everything is set up in a way that’s going to work and it is. So we’ll go ahead and say next step. Okay so it’s unzipped everything just fine. Take our next step. Okay so our site URL is this. The mysql server is not local host. That’s one of the things that’s different. The mysql server in this case is so I’m just going to copy that. Instead of local host, I’m going to do that. So it’s mysql.cheesemongerstable and then the database name is cheesemong and the username is… and the password is… I’ll test the database settings, presumably this is all working. Let’s see, mysql server host Oh you know what? I must have… it looks like I got a space. See that little space right there? I must have gotten a space in this thing when I… yeah, I got a couple of spaces in there. So let’s test those database settings again. That’s the problem of cutting and pasting like that. Okay, succeeded.

So we’ll take the next step. Okay and then the next step… okay and really, we’re finished except for clean up. So what we’re going to do now is just double check that is working.… okay, it looks good. We’ve made the change.

Okay and so I’ll go ahead and log in. Okay now we’re going to go ahead and update the site to the latest version of WordPress. And then we’ll update the plugins and then we’ll back this site up so that we have a complete back up of the site based on its current configuration and we’ll be done with this. So let’s see, we’re going to select all of our themes and update those themes. And then we’re going to update the Contact Form 7 plugin. Okay, let’s just take a quick look at our General Settings and we also need to unset privacy. We had privacy set before so stuff didn’t show up. Okay, let’s see. At this point, we’ll change that. Okay, we’re going to save those changes and then we’ll come down here to privacy and we’ll fix the privacy settings so that it gets indexed. Okay, we’ve got allow search engines to index the site so we’ll set that.

And then now that it is… well, let’s take a look permalinks just to make sure the permalinks are all set the way we want. Yeah, category and post name so… actually, the last thing we want to do is make sure that we don’t have any custom code that references the old site. And we do here, we’ve got in our custom css, we’ve got So we need to fix that to get rid of that so that’s referencing the new site location. And then… yeah, that’s what we need to do is make sure that these references are all to the new site’s location. And in order for me to do that, I actually have to open that up. And I’m going to do that… I have to figure out where I put that thing.

Okay actually, I think what I’m going to do is just download that to… I’m going to download that from the site and edit it that way. Oh yeah, let’s go ahead and get rid of the… let’s finish that clean up first. So we come back over here to this and we’re going to delete all that extra stuff. So clean up and remove the temporary files, okay. Looks like it’s working… it is working. Let’s just double check and make sure that that… let’s make sure those files got deleted. So the Import Buddy file got deleted and so did the big zip file. Perfect.

Okay so now we’re just going to come down here to Thesis custom and we’re going to download this custom CSS file. And I think I need to move it into a different folder though so we’ll download custom CSS and then we’re going to open that custom CSS file. There it is and then we’re going to search for cheese.tailoringtheweb. I’ll search for that and we’re going to replace it with cheesemongerstable. Okay, match the whole words, replace all.

Okay so now we’ve got all of those things done so go ahead and save this file. And we’re going to take it and upload it back up here. So now if we refresh our view of this custom file editor, we’ll see that the new file does not have the… now it says And if we refresh this, this stuff is all going to work. There it is. It all works just fine. So that was what we needed to do.

Okay so we have now successfully transferred a site from Bluehost to Dreamhost using Backup Buddy. And you can see how simple a process that was. It was a very simple process. We’re just going to follow this up one more time by doing a backup of it as it is right now. Now we’ve got it 100% ready to go. We’ll just double check our settings here just to make sure this is still set up. Okay, go to backup. We’ll do a complete backup. And for all intents and purposes, we’re finished with this.

2 Comments… add one

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2 comments… add one
  • J Wilson August 3, 2013, 12:16 pm

    Sadly Backupbuddy and Dreamhost are NOT a good match if you have a large site, I have been trying to migrate two sites from hostgator for several months and they keep crashing.

    The Dreamhost site says it has 91m of ram, backup buddy says it wants 128 to 256, the PHP exec time is 7200 but it dies with a 500 error leave a half installed mess that has to be deleted.

    I tried the options that allow to break large tables down and I tried reducing the 7200 limit but it dies every time.

    Shame as backupbuddy breaks it down into simple steps, but a backup is no good if you can’t restore it.

    Backup buddy grade Dreamhost D to F and say they are working with them but no progress seems to have been made.

    • Rick Anderson August 4, 2013, 10:28 am

      Yes, Dreamhost is problematic for a number of reasons. GoDaddy can also be difficult for cloning or transferring large sites.

      In those cases I manually clone or transfer.

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