Upgrading a large site

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AaronFW
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Upgrading a large site

Post by AaronFW » Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:28 pm

I am looking at upgrading a large website that has been using phpBB 2.0.x for a number of years.

For a sense of scale; The website itself has been active for almost 20 years and as of right now has 1,133,682 posts and 13, 267 members.

I am not an administrator of the website, but am collecting data about what would be required to make a transition from phpBB 2.0.x to 3.2.x. I've read the support material regarding how such a transfer is done. However, I wanted to see if anyone here had advice regarding what to watch out for and what to expect when attempting to migrate large websites through versions of phpBB.

What should we watch out for and be aware of in looking at such a transition? Are there particular difficulties caused by trying to migrate a large website that a smaller website would not experience? Is there a risk that the transition could fail?

janus_zonstraal
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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by janus_zonstraal » Mon Nov 20, 2017 6:55 pm

Best way is to try it first with a copy of the board.
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AmigoJack
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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by AmigoJack » Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:37 am

Migrating a website is different from migrating phpBB - those are two different things.

It's obvious to not do this in the live environment before not having done this successfully in a test environment, and not without file and database backups either. Check if your 2.0.x installation is unmodified by comparing files and database tables with an installation package - modifications will complicate things. Similar usernames might need to be changed.

If the board's address changes (which includes using a new domain) then URIs to posts/topics/forums in post texts need to be migrated, too.
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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by sakm » Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:53 am

One of the main issues would be timeouts on the server due to the size

I have found that making a copy of the database and updating/upgrading works fine in testing then when it comes to updating/upgrading the main board it never goes as smoothly!

If you can take a copy/backup of the database and update/upgrade offline then upload that then it will go a lot better

You would need some database tools though like bigdump etc as the database would be too large to upload in one go

I always have a bit of a prune where possible too! old stagnant members can be removed non relevant posts ie I have a general chat and humour sections I will prune these as they aren't relevant to the boards content! I work on the basis of quality over quantity of posts and members so if anything can be cut down then go for it

It might be worth deleting the search index too then rebuild it once the board if back up and running

Just bear in mind there will be a lot of changes so take things one step at a time

And as AmigoJack says modifications to the database can pose a problem and you will lose all these too

I would set up a test board first and see if you can get it working how you need it compared to the current board as some modifications may have to go if there is no extension available to take its place

AaronFW
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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by AaronFW » Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:56 am

Thank you for the feedback, Janus, AmigoJack, sakm.

Those are all helpful things to think about and exactly what I was hoping to learn.

AmigoJack, I misspoke, it would just be migrating phpBB versions. However, thank you for the details you gave.

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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by stevemaury » Mon Nov 27, 2017 7:50 pm

AaronFW wrote:
Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:28 pm

For a sense of scale; The website itself has been active for almost 20 years and as of right now has 1,133,682 posts and 13, 267 members.
phpBB is only about 16 years old.
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AaronFW
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Re: Upgrading a large site

Post by AaronFW » Tue Nov 28, 2017 10:01 am

stevemaury wrote:
Mon Nov 27, 2017 7:50 pm
AaronFW wrote:
Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:28 pm

For a sense of scale; The website itself has been active for almost 20 years and as of right now has 1,133,682 posts and 13, 267 members.
phpBB is only about 16 years old.
I myself am not familiar with when their forum migrated to phpBB or what (if anything) was used prior to phpBB. But that is good to know. Thanks. :)

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