Help with moving a website on old droplet with PHP 7.0 and Ubuntu 16.04 to a new one

I have an old droplet that I neglected to update, but want to move the Wordpress website on it to a new droplet where everything is up to date. What’s the process? If I make a snapshot of the site, will it just include the old PHP/apache files and old Ubuntu or is that not part of the process? I made a backup of the site using Updraft that included the database, plugin files, etc. but Im unsure of how to even get to the point of using it for a new droplet.

  1. Is it as easy as setting up a new droplet with a snapshot and then switching the domain name for the nameservers to the new IP?
  2. Will http still work? I set up some reoccuring http over 5 years ago through Let’s Encrypt and it’s worked since.
  3. Do you still have to do the LAMP stack process on new droplet?

If anyone could provide a list of steps it would be helpful. Thanks.

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Bobby Iliev
Site Moderator
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December 15, 2023
Accepted Answer


What I could suggest here is using the WordPress 1-Click App on the DigitalOcean Marketplace. It is a great choice for setting up your new environment with Ubuntu 22.04:

The 1-Click App will install WordPress, MySQL, and all the necessary dependencies for you. It will also create a new MySQL database and user for WordPress. You can then migrate your WordPress files and database to the new Droplet.

  1. Create a New Droplet Using WordPress 1-Click App:

  2. Migrate Your WordPress Files:

    • Upload your WordPress files (from the Updraft backup) to the new Droplet. Use SFTP to transfer files to the /var/www/html directory or wherever WordPress is installed.
  3. Importing Your Database:

    • To import your database, first create a new database and user on your new Droplet. You can use the MySQL command line for this:
      mysql -u root -p

    Then, run the following SQL commands:

    CREATE DATABASE new_wp_db;
    CREATE USER 'new_wp_user'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'password';
    GRANT ALL PRIVILEGES ON new_wp_db.* TO 'new_wp_user'@'localhost';

    Note: Replace new_wp_db, new_wp_user, and password with your own values.

    • Once your new database is ready, import your backup. Assuming your backup file is named wordpress_db_backup.sql, you can import it with:
      mysql -u new_wp_user -p new_wp_db < /path/to/wordpress_db_backup.sql
    • Adjust the new_wp_user, new_wp_db, and the path to your backup file as necessary.
  4. Update WordPress Configuration:

    • Edit the wp-config.php file to update the database name, user, and password.
    • If needed, use a plugin like “Better Search Replace” for changing URLs in the database.
  5. Testing Your New Site:

    • Temporarily modify your hosts file for testing the new site with your domain name. Point the domain to the new Droplet’s IP address.
    • Check the website thoroughly to ensure all functionalities are working.
  6. Update DNS and SSL Configuration:

    • After successful testing, update your domain’s DNS settings to point to the new Droplet’s IP.
    • Set up Let’s Encrypt for SSL on your new Droplet. Ensure HTTPS is functioning properly. You can run the following command to set up Let’s Encrypt:
      sudo certbot --apache -d -d
  7. Final Checks and Monitoring:

    • After DNS changes, keep an eye on your site for any potential issues and be ready for any troubleshooting.

Let me know if you have any questions!



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