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How To Migrate Website Manually – SiteGround

Ideally it is best to migrate your website using the receiving host’s proprietary migration tool or either way. You’d like it best knowing that something that is so complex and intimidating even to a seasoned developer, is just few clicks away. However, it’s not all the time that the technical odds will be by your side. In cases, where migration tools refuse to cooperate and fails to migrate your website. There is actually a work around. So, don’t lose hope just yet. I even discovered this stuff painstakingly.

In this tutorial, we will be using SiteGround as our destination host, while the point of origin will be any other host like GoDaddy who are still using typical cPanel and user interaction board.

1. Setup Domain and Website Root Directory

In this setup, you need first to put up your domain and your website root directory where your backup files from another host will be placed.

A. Learn to setup your domain here.

B. As well as learn to setup your website here.

2. Backup files from Old host

1. Login to your old host cPanel

2. Click File Manager » your files are usually inside it “public_html” folder.

3. You can either click-right the public_html folder itself then archive as .zip file it. 

4. Or get inside it and then Select all files » Click-Right » Compress or Archive » Save as Zip

Note: that Zip is the a default archiving file extension across the board where almost all platform understands. Other than that, you’ll at risk running into extracting conflict.

5. After archiving, download the file in a separate folder.

3. Database Backup

1. Go back to cPanel.

2. On the Search field type “Backup”.

3. Click Backup module. List of Databases will be displayed.

4. Choose and click the database of your website and save to the folder where your website files have been saved recently.

5. So, there should be two files now. Website backup and the Database backup. These are two very important files.

4. Upload Backup Files and Database

Go to your SiteGround account, make sure to be logged-in.

1. Click Websites.

2. Site Tools.

3. File Manager.

4. public_html.

5. Click File Upload Icon.

6. Then upload the backups you have just saved.

7. After upload, Click-Right on the zip file.

8. Click Extract.

Make sure that all native files are on the “public_html” folder. If it is not, select all the files that have been extracted, then Click-Drag/Move all files to public_html folder. 

9. Look for the file named: wp-config.php.

10. Click-Right » Click Edit.

5. Create New Database and Username

Duplicate your browser Tab. 

1. Click-Right on the Tab, then click Duplicate.

So, the original tab is for the wp-config.php active tab and the second tab is for the Database creation tab. In the new tab.

2. On the SiteGround Dashboard select Site » MySQL » Create Database.

Now, this is IMPORTANT! A random database name will be generated.

3. Copy that name. 

4. Paste it in the wp-config.php where it says ‘DB_NAME’.

(Optional), you can rename database for recognizeability.

5. Click 3 Dots at the end of the database tab.

6. Click Change Label.

7. Rename it accordingly. Then hit Confirm.

6. Import Database Dump

1. Click the 3 Dots at the end of the database tab, below “Actions” column.

2. Click Import Database Dump

3. Click Browse.

4. Select the Database. The one you have uploaded recently.

7. DB User and Password

1. On the Users Tab Click Create User.

This is very IMPORTANT again. Username and Password are generated automatically.

2. Copy them respectively and paste them in the wp-config.php file where it says ‘DB_USER’ and ‘DB_PASSWORD’.

3. You can label your user name by clicking on the 3 Dots at the end of the user tab.

8. Assigning Database to Username Vice-Versa

1. At the Users Tab click the Database Icon.

2. Click another database icon.

3. Then Click Confirm.

4. At the Databases Tab click Add New User icon.

5. Click Manage Access Icon.

6. All Privileges radio button should be active.

7. Click Confirm.

Get back to your wp-config.php active window and don’t forget to hit Save.

Your transfer should be successful now and your website starts rolling.

Additional Actions:

If however, your website fails to load, there could be more actions you need to take.

1. Updating PHPMyAdmin

1. On the SiteGround Dashboard, Click PhpMyAdmin.

2. Click Access PhpMyAdmin.

3. Click the corresponding Database.

4. Search  and Click options.

5. Change siteurl option_value URL to the correct site address.

6. Do the same the home site address.

Note: Add “s” after http if it is not there. This is for security reason – SSL thing.

2. Updating WordPress Permalinks

1. Login to your WordPress Admin Dashboard.

2. Click Settings.

3. Click General.

4. Update WordPress Address (URL) and Site Address (URL) with the correct addresses. Usually adding “s” after http as usually it doesn’t update with it. 

5. Hit Save Changes. Note: If you are logged-out, just log-in back.

6. Click Permalinks.

7. Hit Save Changes.

3. Clear Caching Features

1. On your SiteGround Dashboard, Click Speed.

2. Click Caching.

3. Click Dynamic Cache.

4. Click Flush Cache icon at the bottom right of the panel.

Note: If you have other caching plugins such as WP Rocket or SiteGround Optimizer – flush them as well.

If after this and after banging your head on the wall, things still failed to load, time to involve your hosting provider in the headache. 🙂

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