Here's how I do my Joomla! moves - and it works everytime:
1. Dump the original Joomla MySQL Database
- Go into your Web Hosting Control Panel and Locate the MySQL Database that your Joomla! installation is using
- There should be a link for PHPMyAdmin that will take you to your Database Administration
- Once in PHPMyAdmin select the Joomla! database and open it up so that ALL of the tables are displayed
- With all the tables displayed press the button labeled EXPORT (located on the topmost horizontal menu)
- In the 'EXPORT' selection box SELECT ALL of the tables (hold the SHIFT key to select multiple items in the list] - Do NOT mess with any of the settings and checkboxes, leave everything as is
- Go to the Bottom of the page and hit the 'GO' Button - this will bring up the database's code in the SQL language - THIS IS THE DUMP
- Copy and Paste the contents of the 'DUMP' into Notepad or minimize that browser window, since you will need to copy and paste that dump into the new database.
2. Install Joomla! on your new server
- Simply...Install Joomla! on your new server
- This involves creating a new database and database username - don't worry about the names, just choose anything you like
- Choose NOT to install SAMPLE DATA -- you don't need any data right? Cause you have your own, old, data...right?
3. Import the Old Database Dump into the New Database
- Now go into your control panel for the new web site
- Locate the MySQL database that the new Joomla! installation is using and then go the PHPMyAdmin page for that database
- Now select the new database and make sure there is NOTHING in the database - if there is anything in the database then you will see a listing of the tables inside the database appear on the page (You have to Select all of them and choose DROP from the drop down selection list) - You will know the database is empty when no tables show up on the database's PHPMyAdmin page.
- Click on the button labeled 'SQL' on the topmost horizontal navigation bar - this will bring up an Empty Text Box labeled "Run SQL query/queries on database"
- Now Copy and Paste the original database DUMP into this Text Box (this is the content you pasted into notepad or left in a minimized browser window)
- Finally, Hit the 'GO' button - you will now see that your content as been added to the database and a huge list of tables appear in the database structure
4. Completing the Move...
- You now have to 'OVERWRITE' all of the essential Joomla! folders that site on the new site with the folders from the old site - this will add all of the stuff you've customized like Components & Modules you've installed, Templates and files you've edited, etc...
- These are the ESSENTIAL FOLDERS to Copy over (and OVERWRITE)
5. Everything is DONE and DUMPED! Troubleshooting...
- That's it...Mission Accomplished.
- If you have a new domain name (as opposed to keeping the old domain name and simply transferring to another host) and things don't seem to be working properly then all you have to do is edit the CONFIGURATION.PHP file that sits on your Joomla! installation Root.
- The edits to make on the configuration.php file are simple: Just replace any instance of your Old Domain Name with Your New Domain Name.
- Make sure that the MySQL version is the same for both websites -- people have had trouble importing SQL dumps because they're using different versions - some webhosts allow you to choose between MySQL 4.0 or 5.0 so be aware
You can contact me if you have any trouble with the process...and I'll help you get it done.