Moving your Joomla site to a new location is both tricky and easy. It requires a migration of your posts, files, database and all the modules you have set up in your previous site. It also requires a changeover of database engine, hosting folder and sire URL changes. From these, you would realize that changing your Joomla server needs a lot of experienced hand and extra care with your files. In this guide, we simplify the process so you can safely and confidently change over hosts.
The first thing to do is to back up your previous site. You will have to do this so that in case anything goes wrong, you can restore easily. You can use your ftp client to download all the previous files from your Joomla installation or use the download link in your cPanel account. You only need to log in to your server and then click on the Joomla folder containing all the information about your site. If you are using cPanel, click Download on the top toolbar ad then save to a local disk. You can do same with an ftp server.
Once you do that, you move to the database export. You can use the phpMyAdmin tool. You can find this in every host that runs cPanel. In your old server, go to the phpMyAdmin and then find the database containing your Joomla settings. Click the Export tool and then save your machine. You will export this database which has all the necessary tables onto your PC. Later you will need to import it when you do the transfer to your new host. Phpmyadmin can do this job easily.
We now come to the crucial step. You will have to make some changes to the configuration.php file. The configuration file stores information about how the Joomla database and its associated URLs should operate. Open this file in edit mode on your server and make changes to reflect your new server. It is likely you will do the following changes:
• $mosConfig_absolute_path: The URL of your Joomla installation (the folder path)
• $mosConfig_live_site: The URL of your new website
• $mosConfig_host: Should be “localhost” in most cases
• $mosConfig_db: Name of your MySQL database.
• $mosConfig_user: Database username
• $mosConfig_password: Database password
With that set, you move the entire files to your new server. For ease of work, you can zip the entire folder and then unzip in cPanel using the extract tool.
Import the database you previously exported from the old site. Use the phpMyAdmin tool in cPanel.
You now have all your files and folder intact. Your site is now ready. Point your browser to your site to see if everything works fine.
Apart from tips on Installing Joomla, we also offer some advice on blogs using Joomla, recommend some essential wordpress plugins, and last but not least, offer advice organising Joomla content and moving your Joomla site to a new server.