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How to Move a Website -Switch Web Hosts Without Downtime

Moving to a new host can be a complicated process. If you only have a static website that only serves HTML pages, it is easy. However, if you are running a database driven website, things are not as easy. If you are joining the Hostbora family, we will move all your databases, files and scripts for free. If you would to move the website yourself, follow this article to ensure the process is seamless and you expect no downtime.

  1. First you need to sign up with your new host. Do not inform your current host of your desire to move to avoid them cancelling your hosting package prematurely.
  2. Back up your website files, pages, scripts, databases and anything else you think might be of value to you. You can also back up your emails using POP3. While your new host will able to receive your new emails, they will not have the old ones. Backups can be done via FTP, or via phpMyAdmin for databases.
  3. Upload your files to your new host ensuring that you maintain the proper document, file and folder tree.
  4. Now that you have two copies of your website with different hosts ensure everything is in its place and complete replica of the other. This applies to all files, folders and documents that need to be accessible to the public.
  5. Change your DNS with your domain registrar. Your new host will provide you with the correct name servers. If you are hosting with us, use ns1.hostbora.com and ns2.hostbora.com. If you purchased your domain with us we will be happy to help you make the changes. We can even make the changes for you free of charge.
  6. Once you have made the changes, wait for at least 48hours for domain propagation to occur. During this period your site may load from either the old host or the new one. After propagation your site will load from the new host.
  7. After you are assured that your site is working and everything is in place, you can contact your old host and cancel your account.

NB. Dynamic websites that use databases may require the webmaster to disable database access to prevent loss of data during the migration process. Choose to do the transfer when your site is not busy e.g. on weekends or at night. You can also inform your clients that you are doing site maintenance and you will be back online when you are done.

Remember if you choose to host with us we will handle all the transfer of your entire site free of charge.

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