Install / Migrate
Once you have downloaded the two package files, you need to place them in a directory where you would like to install/migrate the WordPress site.
To do this, use FTP or cPanel to upload both the archive.zip and installer.php to your hosting provider. Place the files in a new empty directory under your host’s webroot, where they are accessible from a valid url such as http://your-domain/installer.php or http://your-domain/your-wp-directory/installer.php. On many hosts the root directory will be a something like public_html -or- www. If you’re not sure what your root directory is, then contact your hosting provider.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Since the archive contains core WordPress files, WordPress shouldn’t be in the directory beforehand. The only files in the directory should be the installer.php and archive before you run the installer.
Once you have the files uploaded to the directory you wish to migrate the site to, you can then navigate to the installer. Simply type the full path into a browser. For example, http(s)://your-domain/installer.php or http(s)://your-domain/your-wp-directory/installer.php
This will bring up the Install / Migrate screen seen below. As you can see, it is a 4 step process. Let’s walk through it.
In the image below, you will see that there are three sections on the page – Archive, Validation, and Options. You should note that Archive and Validation have both got a green Pass mark next to them. Also take note of the link to the extensive Help docs at the top right if you need them. Note, as well, that if it says Unlocked next to the Help link, this is because you haven’t set a password in the initial Create a Package steps. Click the unlocked link for more details, but it’s not a problem if you will be doing the install straight away and not leaving it at this stage for a considerable amount of time.
Finally at the bottom, you must tick the checkbox next to the Terms and notices section, before the Next button will appear in the bottom right.
If you expand the individual sections, you will see the detailed results of the Archive and Validation steps, and under Options, there are some advanced options. 95% of users won’t need these, but if you run into issues, there is extensive documentation in the help menu linked at the top right of the dialog.
Upon clicking Next, the final part of Step 1 takes place, which is the deployment of the files. This will take some time, depending on the size of your package. When this is finished, we move to Step 2.
Step 2 is all about installing a MySQL database on the target server. Unless you use the Pro version, this is a manual task, but it’s not very difficult. As you can see in the Basic panel, the default Action is Connect and Remove All Data. The remove part won’t be an issue, as we will be connecting to a brand new, empty database.
Before we can click on Test Database, or Next, we have to switch over to our cPanel to create a new database.
Once you have logged in to your cPanel, you need to create a database. What options you have and how it looks will depend on your cPanel version, and indeed, whether you are running cPanel at all. Plesk is another popular hosting administration package, but the concepts will be the same. For this example we are using cPanel.
To create a new database you need to choose either MySQLD Databases, or MySQL Database Wizard. Either will help you quickly create a database for your incoming site.
Either way you do it, there are 3 basic steps (the 4th is just confirmation). See the images below for each step.
- Create a new database. Take note of the full name of the database.
- Create a new user. Again, take note of the full name of the user, and the password used.
- Add the user to the database, assigning full privileges.
Once you have created your database, we can go back to the website and finish Step 2.
Here, you need to enter the details of the database you have just created. Once you enter the details, you can click on Test Database to be sure it’s all connecting, and then click on Next.
One final confirmation screen, and we are on to Step 3!
Step 3 and 4 are quite fast, as the job is nearly done.
Step 3 is simply to update the new paths to the new website. Review and click next.
The final step, Step 4, is to log in to the new website and to check everything is good, and then delete the installation files. Click on the Admin Login button as seen below. To log in, you have to use the credentials of the original site you migrated.
The next screen shows that you have successfully migrated your site, and provides a link to delete the installation files. Once you have clicked on the link, the final screen shows you what has been deleted, and includes a link to Which files need to be removed after an install, in case there are any issues with the automatic deletion.
If all the files have been removed, you’re done! You have successfully migrated your website from either a local production site or another server, using Duplicator.