How to move to a new host?

When choosing a new provider, it is important to keep a check list in mind. Your business or personal website is a well earned and important possession. It is your face in the otherwise faceless online world. You definitely don’t want to lose out on your web presence, and hence always invest in a hosting provider after you have secured the files from the old hosting provider within a running and optimized FTP program. Once you have the files carefully moved onto a local PC, you have a back-up in place. You need to ensure that all files and folders are correctly copied from the server. They need to be secured on the local machine and accessible through the right folders. This built-in backup facility should ideally be well within the control panel.

CPanel is easy for maneuvering; however, in the case of other types of control panels you would most certainly require assistance from your hosting provider. The special ‘backup icon’ and ‘home directory backup' links enable you to successfully generate a ZIP file that houses much required business or personal files on the adopted server. In the case of direct HTML pages, you would most definitely need a file backup for all the dynamic content on the database engine and efficiently reinstated backup SQL database. This is easy to achieve by either the ‘MySQL Database Backup’ within the CPanel or direct access to the MySQL database via ‘full SQL export’.

It is critical to ensure whether or not the business website uses a database. The move to a new provider comprises of creating an account, changing the server entries by logging into the existent domain registrar provider, and entering the 'Name server Setup' option. Once the domain has been set, the actual shift takes place between 8 and 48 hours via dedicated DNS propagation. After this, you need to upload all your files. The welcome email provides you access to your FTP account, and details on how to access the control panel account. You can, at this point in time, restore the file and MySQL backup. Now the website will co-exist on the old and new hosting providers.

You do need to keep in mind that if a business website handles a lot of interaction, you may have to totally switch off from the old site during propagation. This may result in a temporary loss of visitors, but the shift is very essential. You also need to dispatch emails via the new hosting provider's site. You should ensure that all your logs are retained via an offline analyzer. The shift is best made during a low-traffic period. Your customers and the old web hosting provider should be informed about the shift over. Ideally, retain the old account till all the problems are sorted and DNS propagation is complete.



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