Support » Developing with WordPress » Best options for site development in sandbox

  • I have been asked to manage a complete upgrade of an existing WordPress site for a charity and it is important that they both maintain the existing site until ready to migrate to the new site, and for a number of people within the charity to have online access to view portions of the site in development.

    Q1: I have the option of using the charity’s existing hosting for the development or to use my own hosting account for this. If I used my own host – and therefore had to port the new site to a different host once it is ready to go live – is this going to create unnecessary complications or is this manageable?

    Q2: Suggestions on a suitable plugin that will set up and allow the management of a WordPress sandbox environment that is suitable for a first-timer doing things this way!

    Thanks in advance for any recommendations

Viewing 3 replies - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)
  • Hardeep Asrani

    (@hardeepasrani)

    Support Team Volunteer

    Hey there,

    I’m not sure if I understand your question completely, but I use Local by Flywheel for development. It’s pretty cool. You can set it up, change things and delete the instance if you want.

    And I really love Local so I’m too excited to about it, but yea, I’m not an affiliate or anything with them. :p

    You can develop locally using MAMP/WAMP which essentially sets up a mock server environment on your PC. When you are ready you can backup the site and restore to the hosting where it will be live.

    Moderator bcworkz

    (@bcworkz)

    I agree with the others that a local development environment by whatever means is very desirable. However, unless your local box is on a static IP (typical commodity internet service generally is not) and you properly set up your server environment, others will have difficulty viewing the site on your local box. If you do not set it up correctly, your local box could be subject to successful hack attacks.

    It’s not as convenient for development, but it’s generally easier and safer to setup a staging site on a hosted server somewhere. Where and what URL is used to get there is not very important. But if it’s on the same hosting account as the production site, you will not need to copy database when it’s ready, just switch the reference in wp-config.php. Otherwise, once all is ready to go, the site can be moved to to the proper location to replace the current site. Manually moving a WP site can be a rather fussy process. There are plugins that can assist with this, but I’ve encountered difficulties from time to time with plugins.

    Truth be told, while seemingly fussy, you’ll find manually moving a site is not all that difficult and not as fussy as it first seems. Lapses in the process are generally easily corrected as long as you keep backups. The key is getting all URL references in the DB properly updated. I’ve relied on the interconnect/it script to do this with very good success.

    Moving a site is simple enough that you can do all the preliminary work locally. When it’s far enough along for others to look at, move it to a staging site. Finish development and when ready for production, move it again. After the first move, you’ll find moving is not that big a deal.

Viewing 3 replies - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)
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