Some Pre-Move Tips
There are a few things you need to think about as you prepare to leave your old web host and move/create your website(s) here at A Small Orange:
Any permanent records you need from your old host should be screen captured or printed, such as past billing invoices you may need, account specifications and more.
Archive any emails you need to save permanently, but are moving over to A Small Orange. This is important because normally emails cannot be migrated. You can simply make a POP3 connection to a mail account, which then downloads the emails to your local machine.
Download copies of all your current website files and databases. This can come in handy later when you cancel the other host and then discover you are missing something.
Getting Your Move On
Join Your New Host
Sign up for hosting with your new preferred company. Make sure to NOT cancel with your old hosting provider, and do not tell them you will be canceling. Keep this a secret from your old host, or they could prematurely terminate your site and cause downtime.
Migrate Your Site Files
At this point, you should have hosting accounts with two hosting providers (the old and the new one). You will now migrate your entire site from the old host to the new one. This can be done by connecting to the old host's FTP and downloading all your files, and then by connecting to the new host's FTP and uploading all your files (while maintaining the same file and folder structure). If you choose to make A Small Orange your new host, we may be able to transfer your entire site over free of charge!
Complete the steps to transfer your domain over to the new hosting account using our 'Transfer Your Domain' how-to article.
Databases and Emails
You must also backup any databases on the old host (contact the old host for instructions) and upload the backup files to the new host via FTP. You must then restore your databases from those backup files, which can be done via SSH or cPanel's phpMyAdmin. Emails do not normally transfer, but you can archive your emails from the old host. Follow the POP instructions in the 'Some Pre-Move Tips' section at the top of the page.
After you have a copy of your site on both hosting accounts and have all your files on both hosting accounts, it's time to change your domain name's DNS. Your new host will provide you with the correct name servers (DNS). You may need to contact the new host to find out what DNS settings you will use for your domain name.
Our nameservers are:
Once you have the correct DNS, go to the company where you purchased your domain name to make the change. If you purchased your domain name from your host, you usually need to ask them to make the DNS changes for you.
If you bought your domain name from A Small Orange we are more than happy to help you or even make the DNS changes for you. Just hit us up!
Once your DNS changes have been made, you will need to wait 48 hours (two days) before your site will load from the new host. During this 48 hour period, known as propagation time, your DNS is propagating worldwide and your site will be randomly loading from either the old host or the new host. Once the two days is complete, your site will only be loading from the new host.
Cancel Old Hosting
After the 48 hours have passed, your updated DNS will be fully functional. You will now contact your old host and cancel your hosting account with them. If you originally bought your domain name from the old host, do not cancel your domain registration.