How to transfer a site to Hosting Solutions
The following guide outlines the main steps to follow when transferring a website to Hosting Solutions. In particular, it is developed on a frequent case and that is the transfer of a site on the best-selling hosting plan Silver Linux, but can be extended to any of the hosting plans offered.
The procedure consists of 5 steps:
- Purchase the Silver Linux plan and transfer the domain.
- Transfer the files to Silver Linux.
- Export MySQL database.
- Create a MySQL database in Silver Linux and import the old database.
- Test the website and change DNS.
Purchase the Silver Linux plan and transfer the domain
Starting from the page dedicated to the Silver Linux service, enter the domain name of the website you wish to transfer in the box at the top (figure below). Don't forget the domain extension, which in our example is .it.
DAfter selecting the Existing domain option, complete by clicking on the Ordinabutton. From here you arrive in the Hosting Solutions Control Panel, where you have to provide the details of the domain owner ("Customer Details"): at the same time you can decide whether to start the domain transfer procedure immediately; you can also decide whether to use the Hosting Solutions DNS servers or the old ones.
The next image shows the best way to handle the transfer. Select Start the transfer now and use my DNS (you will have to enter the data provided by your old provider): this way, until the transfer of the files, the MySQL database and the testing of the new site is complete, users will always be directed to the previous hosting plan.
Once you have completed the order for your new hosting plan and made the payment, you will be waiting for the activation confirmation email which will contain all the information you need to proceed to the next step.
Transfer the files to Silver Linux
An activation confirmation emailwill be sent to the email address entered when registering and ordering the service, which contains all the information regarding the new account and hosting plan (see image below).
For the various transfer operations (between the old and the new hosting) you will need to use a program with FTP client. For this guide, we have used the free FTP client FileZilla (here is the link to download the version suitable for your operating system) which is one of the best known and most popular (the guide was created with version 3.18.0 for Windows 10 64bit).
Then download the site files from the old hosting plan to your PC using a programme with FTP client (e.g. FileZilla).
Now proceed, using the same FTP client, to upload the downloaded files to the server of the new hosting plan, as shown below.
After installing and starting FileZilla, you will see the following screen:
Using the data indicated in the confirmation email under "FTP ACCESS", complete the empty boxes as follows:
- Host: enter the data indicated in the email for "IP address"
- Username: enter the data given under "Username (login)"
- Password: enter the data given under "Password"
- Port: enter 21
Export MySQL database
In order to transfer the MySQL database from the old hosting plan to our Silver Linux plan, it will first be necessary to export it by creating a file with the extension .SQL ("Export" function of phpMyAdmin). To do this, you will need to access the control panel of your old hosting plan, locate the section responsible for managing/creating databases and click on phpMyAdmin. Once you have logged into phpMyAdmin (see image below), look for the "Export" option in the tabs at the top right and, without changing any settings, confirm to start the creation of the .SQL file (obviously, more experienced users can also choose the custom method).
Create a MySQL database in Silver Linux and import the old database
Go to the Hosting Solutions customer area by connecting to the address pdc.hostingsolutions.it/MasterCP/MasterLogin.pl and access the control panel by entering the data received with the service activation email (user and password) in the appropriate form (see figure below).
On the main screen select the Hosting & Dedicated tab and click on the Apri button next to the Silver Linux service you have purchased. This will take you to the resource management tab:
In the second to last line of the section, click on the MySQL button. Now all that remains is to start creating the new database in Silver Linux: click on the Aggiungi button and select, if necessary, the version of the MySQL database to be created.
Then click on Continua. In the new screen, enter the name of the database (it is recommended to use the same name as the old database), the user name and the user password (the data you will need shortly to log in to phpMyAdmin) and finally click on Applica (see figure).
At this point, the database has been created, so you can import the data stored in the previously exported .SQL file. Click on the phpMyAdmin icon shown next to the new database and log in. In the main screen, select the Import item in the top right-hand corner, then click on Choose File to browse your computer and select the SQL file. Click OK to complete the import process.
After importing the database, you need to manually edit all the configuration files related to the scripts or other applications that use the database (e.g. WordPress will require you to edit the wp-config.php file) by entering the data of the new database: name of the new database (which is probably the same as the old one), IP address of the new database, username and password of the new database (these data are the same as those used in the previous steps of the guide).
Test the website and change DNS
If, when you signed the contract (order the Silver Linux plan), you chose to start the domain transfer immediately but to continue using the DNS of your old provider, then you should also change your DNS to use those of Hosting Solutions to complete the website transfer. Before changing the DNSa, however, it is highly recommended to thoroughly test the website to ensure that everything is working properly.
The test procedure is very simple to perform and involves modifying the hosts file which can be found:
- in C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc onWindows systems;
- in /etc/ on Unix/Linux systems;
- in private/etc/ on macOS;
ATTENTION: this is a file without an extension, make a backup copy for safety.
Then open the hosts file with a text editor (e.g. "Notepad" on Windows systems, gedit on Linux systems). Immediately after the last hash character (#), insert a line with the IP address of the new website (in the image XX.XX.XX.XXX) and the name of your domain (in the example www.nuovosito.it), as shown in the following figure.
Please note that a space must be left between the IP address and the domain name. Then save the file and access the website from your browser to start the test session. Once you have checked that the site is working properly, simply direct all visitors to the new website (so you need to replace the old DNS with those of Hosting Solutions, as the DNS of the previous provider are still active).
To change the DNS, you need to go to the Hosting Solutions customer area and access the control panel. From the Hosting & Dedicated section click on the Apri button next to the Silver Linux service purchased and select Gestione DNS and then the Server DNS tab, completing the boxes as shown in the following image:
Finally, click on the Applicabutton. The change will be immediate, but you will have to wait for the DNS servers to update to redirect visitors to the new site.
Once the test is complete, you can restore the hosts file to its original condition by deleting the line you inserted and saving this last change.