Migration

Well, that was a weekend! For some reason I decided to have a go at running my website [this one] from my own NAS drive. I figured this will save me money in the long run?  won’t have to rely on GoDaddy who have hosted my website since its inception. I’ve not had any problems with GoDaddy but it’s a bit like car tax. When it comes around to paying for the hosting I just find I’d rather not.

So, I spent many hours staring at my computer screen. The first thing was getting the NAS to run as a web server and get the data out to the world. This took a little while to configure, especially the port forwarding and stuff, but I had done this for my Raspberry Pi and it’s web server so I did have some experience. I installed Webstation on the black box and got it working.

The next thing to do was trying to migrate my website from the GoDaddy servers to the NAS. However, this means running WordPress and that means the following have to be installed on the NAS drive:

  • Maria Db for the SQL database
  • Text Editor for getting into those pesky php files
  • phpMyAdmin to read and mess around with the SQL databases
  • WordPress

WordPress configured everything to run well and then I followed a web guide which had explained it should be easy to transfer the data with a little knowledge. I have a little knowledge and I think that makes me more dangerous than most! I FTP’d my site to my PC ready for uploading to the NAS drive.

I then tried importing the SQL database and setting up WordPress to read that database and work properly.

I failed at this about three times.

I failed terribly. To the point of uninstalling WordPress and deleting all the data and trying again. Each attempt took about an hour. It was quite frustrating because I do think I was close and only needed to change a “space” or “comma” in one of the php files and it would have worked wonders. But I started to despair.

So, I paid for some migration software. I already use UpdraftPlus and this automatically backs up my site to the cloud and they offered a migration package for about £20. Considering how much time I had spent doing all this it would have made more sense to spend that in the first place. But, you know, I wanted the experience. I do know a lot more about SQL and stuff now so it wasn’t a complete waste.

UpdraftPlus migration was easy to use and it even sent the files straight to my webserver. I thought that was quite impressive. It did take a long time though and I left it running overnight. I checked on it this morning.

The local version of WordPress was asking me to locate the backup files and then import them. As I was running a very basic and unmodified version of WordPress I hoped the import file would write all data to the SQL database and also import all the settings.

It did and quite quickly.

However, it did come up with an error reading one of the “upload” zip files. I think there must’ve been an error. Most of the website was working well and the WordPress dashboard was looking good. I think the database thought all these media files existed but Updraft couldn’t remove them from the zip file and so stopped working.

I FTP’d into the existing site and downloaded all the media files, about 5GB and FTP’d them to the NAS and hey presto. It all seems to work quite well. I am quite pleased.

I now have to go through and change the odd link here and there which won’t work because of the directory structure, but generally I am very happy with everything. I have a plugin which will crawl through and check links for me. I could also get Google to do a crawl for me, it worked really well last time to indicate some issues on the site.

This is the very first Fooyah communication on this new hosting. I am happy. If blurry eyed.

Changing Appearance

I’ve just been editing my theme files of this website to remove the “leave a comment” link at the bottom of pages. I have no idea about php but I can see how it works from looking at the files stored on my server. A little bit of searching of the internet (world wide web really) and I found the sections to remove from my index.php file. I think this has meant that the website looks a little neater.

However, I do need to have another look and edit out the | symbol that appears at the end of each communication after the tags for that communication. One of the issues is that it is hard to see where these parts of the php file are when you already have deleted the “leave a comment” bit.

Anyway, it’s been about 14 months since I started this website and I am finally doing some tidying up. If they update the theme that I am using then I’ll have to do the whole editing thing again, BOO.