Moving Your Site to Production
You've been working on your Drupal development website and you think you're now ready to make it your new website. What do you need to do now?
Before you submit a request:
- If you have an existing website, is there anything that is a part of the website that you need to keep and isn't on your development site? You will need to identify any directories that need to remain; if you have other applications under your current website we also need to know if they are to be kept as well. We generally recommend that all non-Drupal content lives in a sub-directory, not the root of the Drupal website. Let us know what directories, applications, and other content that you want to keep in your request.
- When do you want the site to go live? We move websites to production on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in the late afternoon, after 3pm. This way, if there is an issue, we have staff available for several days to assist you in the resolution. We require a one week lead time for your request to push the site live. Let us know the date you would like your site to be live in your request.
- If this is a new website (or newly hosted by CWS), do you have a custom URL that has already been approved via the domain name request process and assigned to CWS for maintenance? Let us know the URL in your request.
Once you know the answers to these questions, you can submit your request to us using a Help Ticket request. Please be sure to include your development website URL so we know which site you are working with.
Once your site is scheduled, do not work on your development site after 9am on the day it is moving.
After your website is live:
Right after your site is pushed live, you should review it for errors. Here is a list of items to review on your new website.
- Broken links - we find many broken links are caused by pages being linked back to the development site. You can use a link checker to assist you in finding broken links.
- Broken images and videos - again these typically are pointing to the wrong server.
- Review your entire site for errors: navigation, pages, links
After you've checked your site, there are a few more items to keep in mind
- Update any bookmarks or saved links you have to point to your new website.
- It takes time for search engines to find new sites or to re-index your existing site for the new content. Search results will not be updated right away.
- CWS will disable the log ins to your development website once we move it to production. After your new site has been live for a week with no reported errors, we will delete your development website.
- You can use website statistics to determine if there are a lot of links to content that no longer exist on your website. If you do not have a custom statistics, you can request them from us.
You will be given the location to edit your site once it's live. You'll still be able to edit existing content and add new content as well while your site is live.
If there are any issues that you think are the result of the move, please let us know.