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Pressjitsu’s WordPress Migration Guide

Last updated on Mar 12th, 2021

Your sites are about to move to Pressjitsu hosting, and you might have questions about the whole WordPress migration process. On this page, you can find answers.

To ensure 100% uptime during your site migration, we recommend you book a free managed WordPress migration through your Pressjitsu Dashboard. We are happy to bring your sites to our platform, at no trouble or cost to you.

And of course, you can migrate your sites to Pressjitsu on your own.

Below, you can find our step-by-step guide for requesting a managed migration and self-migrating your sites.

Table of contents:

Get a Managed WordPress Migration

Migrating a WordPress website to a new hosting provider can be tricky and several things might go wrong. To ensure the best results, our expert WordPress support engineers will happily transfer your site to Pressjitsu for free and with no downtime involved.

1. Create a New Site

Go to your Dashboard and click on the button New site. This step is necessary to create a server and a WordPress installation for your soon-to-be migrated WordPress website. If you don’t have any sites yet, you will be automatically redirected to the Create your first WordPress site form.

In both cases, you must enter a display name for your site (this will only be visible to you) and choose the data center that’s closest to your website visitors.

Click Create site and a new server will be created in up to 5 minutes. You can close this tab or proceed to your Dashboard – hit refresh to see when your site is ready.

2. Request a WordPress Migration

When the message Your site is being created is no longer displayed on your Dashboard, your new site is ready and you can submit a migration request. Click the Request migration button and fill out the form:

  1. Enter your site’s URL
  2. Choose the best-suited time range for your WordPress migration

3. Wait for a Reply From Support

Our support engineers will get back to you as soon as possible. They might ask for some further information, including FTP access to your site so that they can export your WordPress website and all its contents.

Should you have any questions, you can contact support through live chat or the Contact page.

Migrate a Site on Your Own

If you have previous experience with WordPress migrations, you can migrate your website to Pressjitsu on your own. In order to ensure the best results, we strongly recommend you go through all the steps below in the same order as they are presented (unless specified otherwise in the text). Should you have any questions, feel free to contact support through live chat or the Contact page.

1. Create a Backup and Download It

Create a backup of your whole site – your files, database, images, plugins, any code files, and other relevant files. Download the backup from your old hosting platform.

Alternatively, you could export all the necessary files and directories, using WP-CLI (wp db export) or the MySQL CLI via SSH.

2. Create a New Site on Pressjitsu

Go to your Dashboard and click on the button New site. This step is necessary to create a server and a WordPress installation for your soon-to-be migrated site. If you don’t have any sites yet, you might be automatically redirected to the Create your first site form.

In both cases, you must enter a display name for your site (this will only be visible to you) and choose the data center that’s closest to your website visitors.

Click Create site and your site will be created in up to 5 minutes. You can close this tab or proceed to your Dashboard. When your site is ready, you will receive an email from us with the details of your new site, including the WordPress username and password as well as SFTP credentials.

3. Import Your Backup to Pressjitsu

Next, upload your site backup files to Pressjitsu. You can do this by using SFTP or WP-CLI, for example. You can get the access details from the email we sent to you after site creation.

Upload the following items:

  • Files
  • Images
  • Database
  • Your current theme and its parent theme into ~/www/wp-content/themes
  • All your active plugins into ~/www/wp-content/plugins
  • Any must-use plugins (review before copying) into ~/www/wp-content/mu-plugins
  • Any validation or other files from your root directory into your ~/www directory on Pressjitsu (such as domain validation files, favicon.ico, etc.)
  • If you’re using anything other than US English, you should also upload wp-content/languages

Important: do not upload any WordPress core files. WordPress is already installed for your site during new site creation.

WordPress files not to upload include:

  • wp-content/advanced-cache.php
  • wp-content/object-cache.php
  • wp-content/db.php
  • wp-config.php

If you need to customize the wp-config.php file, you should make edits to the ~/www/wp-config.php file that already exists on your Pressjitsu server. All such items should be imported or copied line-by-line and the main configuration should remain as provided.

4. Test Your WordPress Website

At this point, you can test whether all the uploaded files are functioning properly.

To do so, you will have to run a search-and-replace across your database, changing your original site domain to the internal domain automatically generated for your website (*.sites.pjtsu.io). You can find this URL on the Domains page of your Dashboard, displayed as the very first domain on the list.

Now, when you visit your site’s internal URL, you should be able to view your site and see if it’s working correctly. If everything is in order, you should run another search-and-replace, changing the internal domain URL back to your original domain.

5. Add Your Domain Name

Add your existing domain to Pressjitsu through the Domains page on the Dashboard.

Click the Add domain button, insert your domain address to the pop-up form, and click on Add domain again.

If domain adding was successful, you’re back on the Domains page of the Dashboard.

Important: Do not update your nameservers yet!

First, you will have to replicate your DNS records – otherwise, your existing DNS records will stop working.

6. Update DNS Records

You should still be on the Domains page on your Dashboard, more specifically on the management page for the domain you just added.

At the bottom of the page, you can find the DNS records. Click New DNS record and add all the records that you need, one by one (you can add MX Gmail records all at once).

It’s crucial to replicate all the DNS records from your old hosting provider on Pressjitsu. If you miss a few, your site might end up not working correctly or your email not reaching you.

7. Add an SSL Certificate

Go to the SSL page on your Dashboard. In the list of SSL certificates, you will already see a Shared Certificate. This is an automatically generated SSL certificate that will always be enabled for the internal domain of your site (*.sites.pjtsu.io).

If you want to upload your existing certificate, click the Add certificate button, choose Third-party certificate from the dropdown, and fill out the fields.

If you don’t have a valid SSL certificate to upload, you can request a free SSL certificate issued by Amazon. However, this requires that you first update all the DNS settings, including changing the nameservers.

Once the DNS changes have taken effect (usually taking up to 72 hours at most), you can request the SSL certificate from Amazon. Click the Add certificate button, fill in the necessary checkboxes, and click Add certificate again.

8. Update Nameservers

Now, if all the previous steps succeeded, it’s time to change the nameservers (unless you already did – to request an Amazon SSL certificate).

Important: Do not update your nameservers if you haven’t replicated your DNS records! Otherwise, your site might stop working properly.

To change your nameservers, go to your domain registrar’s site and replace your old nameservers with the ones used by Pressjitsu:

NS1lion.dns.pjtsu.io
NS2mars.dns.pjtsu.io
NS3ursa.dns.pjtsu.io
NS4zeus.dns.pjtsu.io

9. Keep Your Old Account Running 

Finally, keep your hosting account at your old hosting provider running until the DNS and nameserver changes have taken effect (usually takes up to 72 hours at most). Once you have ensured that your site works properly on the Pressjitsu platform, you can close your old account.

After the WordPress Migration

If you follow all the steps above, your WordPress migration should be a success. It might still take some time for the nameservers to update, but all in all, everything should be working correctly. In case you still have any questions, feel free to contact us through live chat or at support@pressjitsu.com.

Book a Free WordPress Speed Optimization

Once your site has safely migrated to Pressjitsu, we recommend you to book a custom WordPress speed optimization. This is a service that we offer with all our hosting plans as we really care for you and your sites’ performance (the Fast plan only includes the service with a yearly subscription).

The WordPress speed optimization will be performed by our expert WordPress support engineers to make your site faster and more prepared for traffic surges. The optimization can therefore have a positive effect on your website visitors’ browsing experience and your SEO.

Click here to learn more about our WordPress speed optimization service.