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Changing hosting for an FTP based Blogger Blog

We decided to change hosting companies. One of the sites we were migrating had an FTP based blogger blog (ie. blogger was hosted on our site).

There isn’t a whole lot of information about how to do this, but it turned out to be fairly simple.

  1. Before you change the DNS away from the old host, make sure you have backed up the site and make a seperate backup of the blog folder on your old host. (you might also want to back up your access logs while you are at it). This can usually be done by FTP’ing into your old host.
  2. Set things up on your new host. i.e. create the necessary ftp accounts, create the folder on the new host for the blog etc. Also take note of the server paths such as /var/www/yoursite where your site lives on the server or VPS.
  3. If you have a high traffic blog, you probably want to post a notice in the header that you will be doing maintenance over a specific time period. DNS propagation can take anywhere from 15 minutes to almost 24 hours or more. You might also want to turn off comments temporarily so that you don’t end up with comments going to the old host (and oblivion) during the DNS propagation period.
  4. If your new host allows you to pre-publish prior to propagation, then you can publish the blog folder to the new host via FTP. NOTE – We aren’t totally sure if this is necessary or if blogger would re-create all of the postings. It appears that you need to copy all of the files in the blog folder and sub folders to the new host. We didn’t test it without ftp’ing the downloaded blog folder contents.
  5. When you are ready, go to your registrar and point the domain to the DNS of your new host. You will need to keep an eye on when the DNS propagates for you. Running tracert www.yoursite.com from a command prompt will tell you when you are pointing to the new host and eliminate the issue of caching in your browser.
  6. If you could not publish the blog folder prior to propagation, then ftp it to the appropriate folder on the new host now.
  7. Go into the publish settings and set the parameters to match the new host’s requirements.
  8. You will need to republish your blog.
  9. Test your blog to make sure that all of the recent posts are available along with comments. If you temporarily turned comments off, you might want to re-enable them at this point as well as taking any ‘down for maintenance’ messages off the blog.

We’ll be migrating a few other sites where the blogs are hosted on our space so we’ll fill in a few details. Your mileage may vary with this so please be sure to back up your site and blog thoroughly.

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