GoDaddy’s WordPress Migration Tool: Simple and Ineffective

GoDaddy’s WordPress Migration Tool: Simple and Ineffective

NOV 2016 UPDATE: Ok so its worse than I thought, I recently had to migrate another website on a server I control (from the operating system upwards) and still couldn’t get the GoDaddy Migration Tool to work despite all permissions being fine, FTP using standard ports and no encryption required, etc.

Despite previous misgivings about the performance of GoDaddy’s WordPress hosting and my ongoing concerns about their support accessibility, I decided to migrate my blog to them from WP Engine (click to see why).

Don’t get me wrong GoDaddy’s support team members are excellent but its clear that management have made cost-saving decisions about the number of ways and ease with which you can get in touch with them.

GoDaddy WordPress Migration ToolThe Expectation

When I made the decision to migrate from WP Engine to WordPress, I was delighted to see this post by Dave Warfel explaining how to use the GoDaddy migration tool to do a full migration with just 6 pieces of information and the click of button!

This is just how migrations should work, after all WordPress is a standard platform made up of nothing more than files/folders and a database structure!

Finally a bit of sanity!

The Reality

Unfortunately when it came to using the migration tool, the reality was it simply didn’t work but in GoDaddy’s defence I don’t think this is their fault (although a workaround would be simplicity itself to implement).

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The problem is that WP Engine have taken the unusual decision to force the use of an alternative port (2222) instead of port 22 for SFTP connections to your WordPress hosting.

I suspect that this may be a deliberate move to make migrating your data way more difficult and this was compounded when GoDaddy’s technical support team said they couldn’t get FTP access to my account at all as all connections appeared to be blocked (even using port 2222).

In the end, the only way to migrate my WordPress blog from WP Engine to GoDaddy was to do it manually.

Hopefully GoDaddy will update their migration tool to provide additional options, at the very least:

  • The option to manually specify an SFTP port
  • The ability to select a ‘database’ only migration (allowing you to copy the files only manually – by far the easiest bit)
  • The option to provide a ZIP of your WordPress files and a zip of your database


Bob McKay

About Bob McKay

Bob is a Founder of Seguro Ltd, a full time father and husband, part-time tinkerer-with-wires, coder, Muay Thai practitioner, builder and cook. Big fan of equality, tolerance and co-existence.

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