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How to transfer a WordPress site to another host

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Sam Cohen
Software Architect | Full-Stack Developer | WordPress Developer
A How-to on transferring a WordPress site (or Multisite) to another (remote, staging, development) WordPress site.


UPDATE 02/08/2018

Here is a much simpler way to transfer your WordPress files to date!

Using a plugin called WP Sync DB.  https://wp-sync-db.github.io/

Download WP Sync DB plugin(s) from their GitHub repository and install to both of the WordPress sites you wish to transfer. Follow instructions in the video. Whalaa!



WP Sync DB Media Files (Optional Add-on if you need to move all of your media files)


WP Sync DB MultiSite Support (Optional Add-on if you need to migrate to and from a MS site)


WP Sync DB CLI (Optional Add-on if you want to use Command Line) 


This is the quickest and easiest (free) way to transfer your WordPress installation between host


Transferring a WordPress site from a host or local dev server to another host can be a pain. So I've included my steps on how I have accomplished this task.

Steps include an assumption that you have Cpanel access or Ftp access.

If you do not have either, I will also include other ways around this using Wp Plugins.  :)

1. Back up Files

Option 1

Log into your Cpanel, go into Filemanager. Select all file in the WordPress root (public_html). after selecting all files and folders, click the compress button- this will zip all your files so you can download it to your computer.

Option 2

Log into your FTP account and download all files in the wp root (public_html) to your computer.

Option 3

Log into Wordpress, download a plugin called WP Migrate DB (Premium $99) to get a MySQL dump, or DBBackWPup (to backup your files).

You can install the plugins right into the working WordPress from the admin area.

2. Backup database dump

Option 1

Log into your Cpanel, click phpmyadmin..choose the database, then click export..save to file. (This will download an SQL dump which is needed in order to reinstall you WordPress as it is to another server or host).

Option 2

No Cpanel?

Log into your WordPress account. install a plugin called: WP Migrate DB (Premium $99) and/or DBBackWPup and MyFTP (which allow you to view any live code in the PHP files, including the config.php for DB credential reasons)

3. Remap your SQL file

The SQL dump that you have downloaded in the previous step needs to be remapped, that is if you are going to need to use the site on another domain. (e.g  transfer myoriginaldomain.com to mynewdomain.com) Of course, if you are using your same domain name, then skip this step.

However, to remap, simply open the SQL file in notepad, do a find and replace for your old domain name in this exact format: myoriginaldomain.com <-- notice I didn't add "http://www". And replace with: mynewdomain.com. **If you had WP installed in a subfolder, make sure you add the subfolder name to the search if you need to.

4. Upload to New host / Server

Now that you have all files and credentials. Upload the files to the new host.

Go into your PHPMyAdmin (which is including with most host) and import the remapped SQL file..make sure you create a database and DB user first of course ;)

DON'T FORGET TO EDIT THE WP-CONFIG.PHP FILE to reflect your new database credentials.

After all the above steps have been done, go to mynewdomain.com/wp-admin/update.php in your browser
Just to make sure all is working fully back again..!! Have FUN!!



Author:Sam Cohen
1 Comment
LVL 31

Expert Comment

Thank you, simple and concise!

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