How do I migrate from b2evolution to Wordpress?
November 13, 2008 2:13 AM   Subscribe

I am a new blogger using b2evolution who is considering a switch to Wordpress. I would like to back up & restore the whole blog. What exact steps do I need to take (on both the blog & database side) to accomplish this?

Unfortunately, I am brand new to blogging, hosting, PHP, SQL...I am a real noob. I wanted to start my own blog so I registered a domain (, found a webhost (HostGator), and purchased a hosting package. With my hosting package came Fantastico, an application that enabled me to easily set up various programs through a few clicks of my mouse button.

I may have bitten off more than I can chew (at least until I become better educated!). I have had some problems setting up my b2evolution blog and getting it formatted the way I would like it to be. After days of pulling my hair out I read up on Wordpress and am seriously considering a switch.

I have found a couple of sites that have instructions on how to migrate over to the new software, but they kind of leave me behind. These are not meant for newbies like me to understand. Here are my current problems:

Because a script was run to install b2evolution, a database & database user were created automatically, and I have no information on the user login and such. I can't access that info...or if I can I have no idea how to do so.

I don't know how to backup my b2evolution blog (either the database or web side) and wouldn't know how to restore it if I screw this up.

I am brand new to web hosting in general, and this process specifically. I will not want to use the Fantastico script to install Wordpress so I that I can control the installation process, all configuration involved, record the information I need for future administration, and pave the way for me to be able to actually upgrade the software without trying to run another Fantastico script to do so.

Can anyone help me learn what all the various steps are that will allow me to back up and migrate all of my current information, and perform a new installation of Wordpress with the intention of restoring that information?

I tried to learn at least part of this on my own because I needed to back up and restore my b2evolution installation, and the only information I could get from their support forum was very brief, such as "make a database backup." Being a brand new user, this information was helpful but ultimately confusing, and I haven't figured out how to do this yet.

So I do hope that someone is able to help clear up some of this for me, or at least point me to guides or tutorials that start from the very, very beginning. Such as defining basic terms and concepts, and from there specific steps I need to take to reach my goal of moving all my posts, comments, and information from b2evolution to Wordpress, and having a working, configured Wordpress installation (and database backend).

Thank you very much!

posted by Nixie Pixel to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Sorry, one more concern - is there a way for me to keep my current blog live during this process, or at least minimize its downtime? What is the best way for me to be able to work on/test the blog software itself without affecting my live/production blog?

Thanks again!
posted by Nixie Pixel at 2:17 AM on November 13, 2008

This link from WordPress should work. If if it doesn't, there's a whole slew of things from Google.

WordPress installs fast. You can wither find a time where people don't visit your blog a lot, or you can install WordPress in a subdirectory and point things there. But I'd go with just installing fast.
posted by theichibun at 6:14 AM on November 13, 2008

theichibun's import script is probably the simplest way, but you still need the database name & password for it to work.

The password is simple since it will almost certainly be the same as your account password, since the password in this case is not specific to the database but is for accessing the database process for your hosting account.

The database is probably called something like useraccountname_b2e. There are a few ways to find out the db name, here are a couple of possibilities:

I've never used b2evolution but it looks like the db/pw credentials are stored in blogs/config/_basic_config.php. You won't be able to access this file from a browser; you'll need to get to it via FTP or SSH -- these are programs that allow you to move files to and from your web server. Hostgator uses the Cpanel interface, which includes a web-based file browser labeled "File Manager", but I think you'll be best served with an FTP client. There are loads of free FTP applications out there. In all likelihood, the server will be and the username/password for FTP access will be whatever you use to access the hosting account. Once you have FTP access to the site, you'll also be able to copy all of the files onto your hard drive.

Cpanel also includes a database GUI program called PHPMyAdmin. You can use this to view the databases under your account -- there will be one called "information_schema" and probably only one other one, which will be your blog's database. PHPMyAdmin also will allow you to very easily export the contents of the database using the "export" function.

As for making a smooth transition, ordinarily I would recommend installing WordPress in a subfolder and then moving it, WordPress doesn't move very cleanly unfortunately (the post URLs don't get rewritten automatically) so while that's a possibility, it isn't really ideal for someone new to the process.

I think just putting up a placeholder index.html with a message that things are changing on the back end and the site will be back shortly would work. Theoretically, the whole process shouldn't take too long.
posted by camcgee at 8:45 AM on November 13, 2008

Thank you for your help! I actually called the hosting company and they couldn't tell me what password the user would have been given, apparently it is generated randomly? So they suggested I delete the database user and create a new one. I don't have a problem doing this, but will some of the configuration files have this information and therefore be pulled over by the script? Or does configuration not get brought over, only the database itself?

Aren't some of the files I will need kept in other directories on the server, such as in /media? How does this script address that, or will it just pull the tables and expect me to recreate all of the rest?

Thank you again!
posted by Nixie Pixel at 2:20 PM on November 13, 2008

Creating a new database user seems like an unneccessary step. You can get the database user and password from the b2evolution configuration files. I just installed a version on my test server here and the information is in [server root]/blogs/conf/_basic_config.php

In that file, starting on line 54 is the following array:

$db_config = array(
'user' => 'xxxxx', // your MySQL username
'password' => 'xxxxxx', // ...and password
'name' => 'b2e_test', // the name of the database
'host' => 'localhost', // MySQL Server (typically 'localhost')

In your version, those x's will have the relevant database credentials for your installation.

Unfortunately, knowing that information isn't going to get you too much farther at this point because the script that theichibun linked to is apparently obsolete as of late 2006. I just tried to use it and it failed completely. Apparently the b2evolution database structure has been changed significantly but no one has updated the script.

I was able to find a more recent guide, but it's nothing as simple as running the script would have been.
posted by camcgee at 8:48 AM on November 14, 2008

Well, thank you again. I am currently attempting a process I found on the Wordpress forum, which seems a bit simpler than the link you posted, and was written in 2008 (just a week ago) rather than 2007.

Wish me luck!
posted by Nixie Pixel at 1:21 AM on November 15, 2008

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