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Migrating Server from Webmin to cPanel Control Panel


Moving the accounts including the domains, databases and email accounts between the servers (where source and destination control panels are different) is pretty complicated process as no automated scripts are available for this migration. Each and every step for this migration has to be done manually. We guys were frequently receiving client requests for migration from Webmin to cPanel.

We figured out one of these requirements and started working at that point. At that moment, we did it manually and now trying to acknowledge you guys with an easy manual steps for migration. Hope our method at this point on manual migration would help you in a prominent way.

Scenario:

Here in our case we tried to move a dedicated server at rackspace which has only webmin loaded to a known host which installs WHM/cPanel. Also migrated all the files and accounts from webmin server to the cPanel server including the domains with associated databases from the present server to the new server.

The migration would include the transfer of Mail, HTTP & MySQL. So, the estimated time of the migration will depend on the web contents, number and total size of the databases and the number of domains that has to be transferred. Exact estimation for the time taken for migration process would require:

  1. Server login information
  2. Email server information
  3. Control panel details
Fast and bland migration includes:

  1. List of websites and their corresponding root directories including complete path of each domain.
  2. Keeping one copy of all the email accounts in the outlook or any other email client application.
  3. Recreation of all the email accounts and provide complete path where the email contents are stored.
Depending on the above information you can estimate ETA for the migration. Content migration may take a few hours depending upon the size of the data. While this content is transferred, start creating domains and email accounts with new passwords in cPanel. The email contents can be moved on the new server once the DNS of the domain names are fully propagated. However, there is a possibility of emails being overwrite. Before migrating emails from webmin to cpanel, verify if both the servers has compatible email formats? The old server email format should match with the cPanel mail format. You can verify it by checking any of the "Maildir" directory of the email account.

Finally, we are moving to external/internal backup storage. Say for example, you can use the USB drive to secure the backup and then start with early migration. Attach the paths for the accounts on the old server and also where to put files on the new server. Now take a backup of the entire machine to the USB drive.

How to Execute Migration?

The execution plan for the migration will be as following:

  1. Backup entire server to the USB drive
  2. Migrate web contents and Databases
  3. Migrate FTP accounts to the new control panel
  4. Migrate email services to the new control panel

  1. Initiating with backup on USB drive

    Generally, the backup is taken under the directories like :

    /mnt/usb
    /mnt
    /home/backup
    /backup

    But if the customer wants the backup other than the above directories, he should specify the directory name. Start the backup only after the confirmation from the other end. The backup is taken under specific folder as per the requirement. The migration can be stepped further only after successful backup.

  2. Migrating web contents and MySQL databases

    Login to the old server’s webmin panel. On successful login, move further with migrating the domains’ web contents to the new server. After website migration is completed move over to the database migration.

    You should have the details like the password of root user of MySQL and corresponding MySQL database of each domain. This is not required but sometimes it would be necessary to complete the migration process hence as a prerequisite step it is recommended. After having the required information the database migration can be proceeded. The database and its username cannot be same as it is in the Webmin panel because cPanel by default adds the prefix for database and its username [this prefix is same as the cPanel username and this cannot be changed]. Hence, the code must be updated with the new username and password.

    Now migrate the email contents to the specified email account, and set the password on the new server to check the emails in the inbox. Once the website starts pointing to the new server, set the cron job.

    Moving ahead with the next step...

  3. Migrating FTP accounts

    Move further with migrating the particular directory to the corresponding domain name and provide complete FTP details along with the username and password after the completion of data migration of this directory.

  4. Migrating email services

    Now migrate the email contents of each email account and reset the password on the new server. Check the emails on the new server with the password specified to verify the emails on the same. Also check whether the contents are placed under the correct directory or not.

Set up cron jobs and SSL certificate [these are the additional settings need to be done if the client has set on the old server]:

Verify whether SSL certificate is migrated and the cron job is set or not. Once the domain starts pointing to the new server, you can set the cron job. Migrate the SSL certificate from your end and verify it with the URL.

Back After these steps of migration are successfully completed, the exact estimated time can be calculated.
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