UNIXADMINSCHOOL-2.0 ready for 2014 – Wish you all for Best New Year.
The Idea of redesigning our website has been bugging in my mind since Jul/2013. And the reason is, this three year old blog become very inflexible for changes and taking too much time for every small feature that we want to introduce. The pain of working with something inflexible drove us to consider for an entire redesign. After considering all the pros & cons of redesign and calculating the efforts required for the migration we postponed this task until this December. Finally, I did complete the migration on Dec-6th and made the new site alive on Dec-7th with minimum glitches. Overall, the journey was awesome and I learned my lessons along the way.
I just want to give you a quick run-down about the work done, so that it will help other folks going for similar kind of feet.
Tools and Applications We are using to Manage this Website :
- Godaddy – My Web Hosting service for both my old web site and new website ( ref : http://x.co/easyblog )
- Awber – My E-Mail Subscription Manager ( Ref – http://trackmymails.awber.com/ )
- WordPress – PHP based WEB Application to Run my blog
- Vaultpress – My Website backup tool
- My Current Site : www.gurkulindia.com on Linux Server
- Destination Website : www.unixadminschool.com is also running on linux server
Since both the current and new sites are running with same service provider ( i.e. Godaddy – http://x.co/easyblog ) the job of redirecting my DNS IPs from old site to new site and Copying Site Contents become little easy.
Overall Migration Procedure :
1. Take the Full backup of Current Website – That includes Database, Pages, Posts, Categories, Tags,
Since I’m using the vaultpress backup for my site,this thing happens every day automatically for my site, I don’t need to worry about this task separately.
2. List down all the major third party tools and plugins that I have installed to my site for past 3 years
This task turned very difficult for me, because I have made so much customization to the site and I lost the track of what I have done so far. So I was kind of worried that my posts might break if some plugins or code not working properly in the new site. But somehow, my groundwork doesn’t fail me in the migration.
3. Install the new site and redesign it as per the requirement.
This time I minimized the use of external tools applications and stick to the principle of keep the things simple in the background. So that anyone else with minimum web server knowledge can manage this stuff with little guidance, when I am not around the desk.
4. Export the Old Site Content and Import it to New Site
Actually, in real world webserver migration this is quite complicated task because it involves DATABASE Migration and then Content Migration. But In mycase , the wordpress application provides tools to export and import site content , so I have used the same to move the site to new location. Initially I have exported the Site Content ( Posts, Pages, Categories, Tags, Menus …etc) to an .xml file in my desktop, then I imported the file back to my new website.
There is a Catch here, you need to make sure that the posts link format is same as your site format otherwise your imports will fail.
This job almost killed me, because many of the posts using the plugins that I have not installed in the new site , so I have to install it back restart the entire process of import again. And check if there are any broken links during the import fix them on the fly. This process took more than 5 hours and in a single stretch.
5. Update My Mail Subscription Tool ( i.e. http://trackmymails.awber.com/ ) and Backup tool to refer new website.
6. Finally, the most important thing, make sure Google redirecting the search traffic to my new website.
Initially when I started this migration, the first question that was raised in my mind .. ” What if my site lose all the Google search ranking that gained in last 3 years?” .
And this question keep on running on my mind until the next day of migration. But to my surprise, Google paid me well for my effort and my site search traffic increased 25% within a week of migration And when I analysed for the reasons, I understood that new site design is exposing more content to Google compared to the old site.
What are the Outcomes that we are expecting from this Migration?
I have 3 purposes for this migration:
1. Most Important thing, Present you a better User Interface.
Did we achieve This ? We need your feedback . Please comment on what you think about new site design and user friendliness.
2. New Site design allows me introduce more Authors to you, that means more Unix & Linux knowledge is flowing to your desk
Work In progress – we have received very good response for my invitation for more authors http://mentorsup.com/blog/2013/12/start-your-new-year-with-a-unix-resolution-join-our-team/ . We will introduce the new authors to you very soon.
3. I just want to make the site administration task easy, and less time consuming
So that I can delegate the web server administration job to other members in my team, and can put more focus on creating useful content for you.I will have someone ready for this task, soon.
What you can expect from us, in 2014 :
For past 6 months, all of our team members were focused in upgrading our own skills to latest technology trends to meet the current market requirements. Our main focus in 2014 will be adding more knowledge articles related to cloud computing technologies , big data technologies and server automation technologies.
We need your Feedback and Comments now :
what things you like and you don’t like from us?
What are the things you want to see more, from us?
Help us to better assist you in new year. Thanks again for your continuous support.
Finally, once again