Changing Webhost and MySQL Dump

Changing webhost is a pain in the neck for online publishers. When I refer to publishers, I mean anybody who has online presence. It will be good if your new webhost will assist you in moving your files and databases. But keep in mind, nothing is free, any services offered by your new webhost will be paid one way or another even if told to be free. It is still recommended to do it yourself to have a better understanding on the task and have a better control on backup files as these may be important if situation demands.

Moving files from one webhost to another is very straight forward. FTP, CPANEL or similar tools could be used. I will not delve much on this area as I want to emphasize on database transfer particularly on large mysql dump proved to be very difficult.

You may say, I will use phpMyAdmin. That answer is easier said than done. Why did I say this? To import an sql file using phpMyAdmin, it needs to upload the file using web browser first. This method of file uploading has limitations as only recommended to small file sizes. The recommended method for large file transfers is FTP.

As far as I know (I may be wrong), phpMyAdmin does not have a feature to import sql files already on the web server. You may ask, how is it done then? This could be done in several ways. Write a script to connect to your database, read the sql file already on your server and import the sql into your database. Or use a utility such as Bigdump.

The Bigdump script which can be downloaded from its website is only 10 kB, a single file, ajax activated.

All you have to do

  1. Download Bigdump
  2. Edit it to reflect your MySQL database, username and password
  3. Upload it on a directory on your web server
  4. Upload your MySQL dump, in SQL or GZ format.
  5. Run bigdump.php and click the sql file to be dumped.
  6. Wait for it to be finished and you're done! Check your database to ensure that your database is there.

The only limitation I found for this Bigdump, it errors on "extended inserts". So if you are using phpMyAdmin to download your sql dump, untick the extended insert option. Otherwise you will be fine.

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