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Pre Migration Checklist

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One of the many benefits of becoming a Hostwinds Client is that we offer a Migration to your new account. This is done for clients who qualify for our Migration Policy. This allows you to submit a migration request after placing your order so that we can begin this process. It is important to review our Migration Policy prior to submitting a migration request so that you are familiar with how this will work. The key to a successful migration to Hostwinds is communication with our migration team so that this is successful.

Cloud VPS Hosting Migration Checklist

Step One: Verify that you have the information that is needed to connect to your server at your current web hosting provider:

  • IP address
  • Connecting Port
  • Username
  • Password
  • Specific details that we need to know

Step Two: If access is needed to your previous web hosting control panel, a CDN provider, or any other web hosting specific accounts, this should be communicated in the migration request

Step Three: Ensure that any DNS information is something you have saved. This may include a DNS Zone file from your Authoratative Nameserver provider and include A records, MX records, CNAME records, TXT records and any other current DNS settings you have for each of your domains that you wish to migrate

Step Four: Review your welcome email from Hostwinds after your order is completed for the DNS settings including any IP Address and Nameservers for your Hostwinds account. This will need to be added through your Cloud DNS Management as the last step in the migration when you are ready to point your site over.

As we mentioned at the beginning of this guide, communication is key to a successful migration. At this point, you will want to notify any stakeholders, your developers and/or any IT staff of the migration plan so that they can begin preparations and are informed. This should be done well in advance so that are prepared and can be standing by in case they are needed.

Testing Your Sites Prior to Migration

Step One: Gather the URLs for all of your most critical pages and sites

Step Two: Test all of the top performing pages and functions of your website so that you can compare the performance of your site before and after a migration

Step Three: Review any error reports from broken links and search engine crawl errors to see if these can be resolved prior to a migration beginning

Step Four: Lower the TTLs for your website’s DNS records to 300. You may need to consult with your current DNS provider for how to lower these

Start The Migration

Step One: Choose the Hostwinds service that best fits your needs. Hostwinds is available 24/7/365 to help you choose the right service if you need any help

Step Two: Once you have chosen the service that best fits your needs, you can install the Operating System or Application through the Cloud Portal for a VPS, choose the application to be installed through Softaculous for a Shared, Business or Reseller service to get your account set up

Step Three: Create a copy of your site’s files and databases and store them somewhere that you can access them at any time if these are requested. There are several ways to create a copy of your account manually, using a backup tool, via SSH or via FTP. You can also ask your current provide to provide a backup up your account if they offer this service

Step Four: Import your database into the Cloud Server or upload the database backup file to your Hostwinds server and let our migration team know the name and location of your database file

If you would like our migration team to copy a database to your Hostwinds service for you, just let our migration team know the name of the database that you need to have copied over and created on your Hostwinds server

Testing After The Migration

Step One: Connect to your Hostwinds server to perform testing of the functionality and ensure that everything is working as expected. This is a critical time of the migration to communicate to our migration team if you see any issues at all so that we can review them right away

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Step Two: Run performance tests and look for any errors

Step Two: Confirm that you are happy with the migration after any issues have been resolved and communicate this with our migration team

Edit Your DNS

Step One: Login to your Authoritative Nameserver provider’s DNS management and edit the domain’s DNS records to match the DNS records that were sent to you in your welcome email. The welcome email was sent to you when you first signed up for your Hostwinds services, or you can login to and click the Hello! drop down on the right side of the page and choose Email History to review your welcome email

Step Two: Add the DNS records for your domain using Hostwinds Cloud DNS Management

Step Three: Wait for the DNS records to propagate. This may take up to 24 hours

Your website visitors will start seeing your newly migrated site!


Step One: Ensure you are completely satisfied with your migration and that it was a success

Step Two: Contact your previous web hosting services provider to close your account

Hostwinds takes many measures to ensure migrations are done to the best of our ability and we communicate with you every step of the way through a migration email so that communication is clear and any issues are communicated to you and to our team during the entire process. We have a team of experts standing by and are always more than happy to help you in any way we can so that you can get started using your Hostwinds services.

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