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Changing Wordpress Main Domain

Posted on 2013-11-19
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Last Modified: 2013-12-04
We are changing the primary domain that is used to access our website which is a Wordpress site.

I have been reading about changing the domain, etc. but wanted to get an idea of any possible problems we may be running into.

Will the images in posts and pages be affected by a new root URL?  Do we just update the Domain in Settings >> General after the DNS has been updated for the previous domain?

Advice is appreciated.
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Question by:axessJosh
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Expert Comment

by:McSnoogins1
ID: 39660802
Hi axessjosh,
I have just recently moved my wordpress site to a different domain. I used the following guide to get through it and everything worked well.  The only stumble I came across was that for some reason my host changed alot of the permissions which stopped my media being displayed.  That was easiest to sort by connecting to the site with FTP using filezilla, highlighting the relevant files/folders, right clicking and in properties changing the permissions back to what they should be.

http://fizzle.co/sparkline/move-wordpress-to-another-domain?tt


If you are changing the actual domain name you will need to run search and replace which is mentioned towards the bottom of the article
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Expert Comment

by:James Rodgers
ID: 39660843
take a look at wp migrate db, we  have used it on over 50 site moves and never had an issue.

if you are going to use a search and replace on your sql dump it better manage serialized data

http://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-migrate-db/

just zip up the files and ftp to the new host if necessary
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Author Comment

by:axessJosh
ID: 39660845
Thanks, I'll take a look at the article.

We're not moving the host, but rather changing our church's main domain.

it was cornerstoneshiloh.org

and will now be:

onecornerstone.org as we are expanding into a multi-site church.

we've moved the site once which turned out to be a nightmare so I'm hoping just changing the domain is easier.
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Accepted Solution

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Jason C. Levine earned 500 total points
ID: 39661059
I'm hoping just changing the domain is easier.

All of the links in the current content will break :)

When you change the domain name to the site you have to also change it in the WordPress settings.  Unfortunately, that change doesn't get reflected in existing content and you will need to go through and update the wp_posts table manually.  It wouldn't be a bad idea to dump out the entire WordPress database to a text file and run a Find/Replace command in your favorite text editor per:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web_Development/Blogs/WordPress/A_10258-How-To-Move-A-WordPress-Site.html

Any obviously you will need to set up 301's to handle inbound links that will be using the old domain name.  Expect your site's rank to take a significant albeit temporary hit anyway.
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Author Comment

by:axessJosh
ID: 39663049
Would a better solution to not affect page rank be to just build a separate installation of Wordpress in a secondary folder on our host linking to the original DB, then setup the new site completely there starting with the new domain.  Then, just do a redirect on the other domain to the new site?
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Expert Comment

by:Jason C. Levine
ID: 39663404
No real difference.  When you change URLs, you take a hit until Google figures things out.
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