How to Move Your WordPress Site to a New Server

Looking to transfer your entire site to a new server? The WordPress Codex explains the process (http://codex.wordpress.org/Moving_WordPress), but it may seem a little too complicated for some. There are a lot of things that could go wrong in the process. Which is why we created this tutorial, to show all of you a quick and easy way to move your entire site to another server.

Create Package

On your current website, first install Duplicator plugin, this is a free plugin that can abstract away nasty details. The plugin creates a “package” that can be used to re-create your current website in a new environment. Now go to Duplicator from the admin menu and hit the Create New button:

website-to-new-server

In the next screen you can select files and / or database tables to be excluded from the final package. Although this feature can come handy sometimes, you can safely ignore it and hit the Next button at the bottom of screen. In the next window the plugin checks for requirements and errors:

website-to-new-server

The most common errors you might see are:

  • Max Execution Time: adjusting “max_execution_time” setting in php.ini file will fix that; you can contact the web hosting provider, they’ll adjust this for you.
  • File size warning: the error occurs if the package size becomes larger than 150MB in size, for example in website that use lots of images this could occur, however you’ll likely be fine during the migration. If the migration does not work out (following the tutorial to the end) you can ask the web hosting provider to disable the server limitations momentarily.

Now hit the Build button. Depending on the size of your website this will take several minutes (not hours, if it takes hours something has gone wrong, you can re-try creating the package). Now your package is complete:

website-to-new-server

Now download both the archive file and the installer by clicking on the blue buttons. We’ll need both files to migrate the website to a new server.

Migrating the website to the new server

Now that you have the archive file and installer.php file, copy both files to the root directory of your new server (you can use FTP tp upload both files, or use cPanel), and make sure both files are in the same directory:

website-to-new-server

Navigate to the URL of the new domain and launch the installer.php file, in my case I’m moving the site to my local host in the “new_website” directory, so the address becomes: “http://localhost/new_website/installer.php”:

website-to-new-server

Enter the database details (not sure? Contact the web hosting provider, they can give you the required details), check the “I have read all warnings and notices” checkbox and hit Run Deployment, and we’re off to the next screen:

website-to-new-server

Now here’s the most important bit: here click the Advanced Options and then enable the “Enable Full Search” checkbox. This is required so that the URLs in Builder (links you might add, images that are uploaded to the site, etc.) are all updated to the new website. Now hit the Run Update button.

That’s it really. If you’ve gone through all steps your new website in the new server is ready and launched.