Difference between revisions of "Converting"

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(Major re-write and work.)
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Thank you for deciding to convert to, or at least test the conversion to SMF. Before you get started, please remember that the conversion will not overwrite or change your existing forum, and that there is a place for help at www.simplemachines.org if you run into any problems at all. There is a separate help board - [[:Category:Converters and Importers]] where you can ask for help with converting to SMF.
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Converting to an SMF forum has never been easier! A fully installed SMF forum must be present before converting. Converting will wipe out any existing SMF data. Converting to SMF from almost any forum software can be done in four fast and simple steps:
'''
 
Next:''' [http://docs.simplemachines.org/index.php?topic=16 What's required to run SMF?]
 
  
  
The first thing you need to do, before you can convert, is upload all of the files in the installation package found on the downloads page to your server in, preferably, a directory other than your current software. You can upload it to any directory accessible by URL. If you're not sure where to put it, a directory named "forum" or "smf" is a good choice. You may wish to make sure that all of the folders were uploaded, such as Themes/default/languages, because some FTP clients have been known to drop files.
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==Download the conversion tools==
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The latest SMF converters can be found on the converters downloads page of the official Simple Machines website.<br />
  
''Note: The converter will not work unless SMF has access to the database that the forum you&#039;re converting from is on. For best results, you should install SMF on the same database as the forum you&#039;re converting from. If this is not possible, you will need to make sure that the database user account being used for SMF has access to the other forum&#039;s database. If you are not sure how to do this, please ask on the forum and someone should be able to assist you.''
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Download the latest version of your required converter from the official Simple Machines website. Listed will be all the forum softwares and versions currently supported by Simple Machines, feel free to ask for another converter in the Converting to SMF board if your forum software is not listed. Commonly, .zip files are the preferred download type. Most operating systems have the tools available to extract .zip archives already installed.
  
[[:Category:A complete installation guide is also available.]]
 
'''
 
Converting from your current software'''
 
  
After you have finished with the installer (it should walk you through the rest of the process) and deleted the install.php file, you&#039;re ready to get the conversion process going. Be warned, however, that the process can take some time for larger forums, because it has been engineered not to disrupt the server&#039;s normal operations.
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==Extract and Upload the conversion tools==
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Once the conversion archive has been downloaded it will need to be uploaded and extracted before the convert tool can be run. There are two possible methods for this step. The method used will depend on the tools available with the control panel supplied by the hosting service provided. Please ensure you upload in Binary if using an FTP client. The convert.php file and the associated SQL file for the forum software must be uploaded to the same folder a the blank SMF install.
  
To begin, download the converter you want from the download page. If there is no converter available for the software or version you&#039;re using '''or the converter on the downloads page doesn&#039;t work''', please check the [[:Category:Converters and Importers]] board for more information and links to updated converters that may work. The converters can be found as a sticky topic inside of the child boards for the forum you are converting from. Otherwise, download the files (for example, it might be yoursoftware_to_smf.sql and convert.php) and upload it to the same folder as SMF. Please note that the converter will not delete or edit any data in the original location, it will simply copy it into the new format.
 
  
Once that&#039;s done, use your browser to go to http://www.yourdomain.tld/forum/convert.php, where www.yourdomain.tld/forum is the URL to where you put SMF. You should be presented with two boxes - one for the path to SMF, which should already be correct, and another for your software. The converters will detect if the path is correct for you, so if it takes a few tries, don&#039;t worry. You will also see a box for the current password - this should be the password for the database account you installed SMF with.
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===Uploading Before Extracting===
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Some control panels have the ability to extract an archive, such as cPanel. This allows for hassle free uploading and extraction of the archive. Once the archive is uploaded, select the extract option to extract the archive to the desired location. Ensure that overwrite files is selected to have the newer files replace the old ones.
  
After you hit continue, the conversion process will begin. Depending on the size of your forum, it may take quite some time, but it will continue for you automatically, the status bar will appear to keep you informed of progress. Near the end, you may be prompted to specify whether you wish for some extra features to be converted, but that is very converter-specific.
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===Extracting Before Uploading===
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If extracting abilities are not available inside the control panel, the archive can be extracted before uploading. Generally right clicking the archive and selecting the extract all option will work. The directory structure should be retained when the upgrade archive is extracted, so all files and directories are in the correct places.
  
'''Finishing everything up'''
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==Backup the Database==
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Before starting the conversion process a backup of the live database should be taken, this protects the forum from accidental damage and any issues from converting. Although all steps are taken, and extensive testing carried out, sometimes issues develop so having a backup is crucial.
  
From this point, the converter should walk you through everything. If you have any trouble please visit the [http://www.simplemachines.org/community| support forum].
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===Backup a Database Using phpMyAdmin===
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phpMyAdmin allows the option to export a database, from the initial page select the export option and follow the instructions and select your forum softwares' database, these are different based on host.
  
Please remember to delete the converter and install.php files after the process is complete. '''If you do not delete them, it is possible that someone could compromise the security of your [[Forum]]'''.
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===Backup a Database Using a Control Panel===
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If the hosting service provides a control panel interface, this can be used to backup a database. Selecting the Backups or Backups Wizard option should take you to prompts for backing up a database. With different hosts these options may have different names.
  
Good luck!
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===Database access===
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The conversion tools will access all your existing forum software data through the database, for this to work correctly SMF will require access to read the existing database. On most hosts this will not be an issue, users can be added to the database through a hosting control panel.
  
[[Category:Installing SMF]]
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==Run the Convert Tool==
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The final step in converting to SMF is running the conversion tool. Navigate to the directory where SMF resides, and then open the convert.php file. For eg: www.yourdomain.com/forum/convert.php.
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===Converter Settings===
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;Path to SMF
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:The path to the SMF install (eg. /home/user/SMF), the default information will usually be correct.
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;Path to forum software
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:The path to the existing forum software (eg. /home/user/forum).
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;SMF Database Password
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:As a security measure SMF requires the SMF database password to be entered to stop unauthorized conversions.
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;Set SMF's default character set to
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:Select a character set for the SMF install to use, usually the default will be acceptable, if in doubt select UTF-8.
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==Finishing the Conversion Process==
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Once all parts of the conversion have completed, check the box to remove the conversion files from the server. If this does not work they will need to be deleted via FTP. All conversion files should be removed from the server once the conversion process is complete as they are a major security risk if left on a server unattended.
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'''Congratulations on converting to SMF successfully!'''
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{{Installing SMF}}

Revision as of 07:48, 4 November 2010

Converting to an SMF forum has never been easier! A fully installed SMF forum must be present before converting. Converting will wipe out any existing SMF data. Converting to SMF from almost any forum software can be done in four fast and simple steps:


Download the conversion tools

The latest SMF converters can be found on the converters downloads page of the official Simple Machines website.

Download the latest version of your required converter from the official Simple Machines website. Listed will be all the forum softwares and versions currently supported by Simple Machines, feel free to ask for another converter in the Converting to SMF board if your forum software is not listed. Commonly, .zip files are the preferred download type. Most operating systems have the tools available to extract .zip archives already installed.


Extract and Upload the conversion tools

Once the conversion archive has been downloaded it will need to be uploaded and extracted before the convert tool can be run. There are two possible methods for this step. The method used will depend on the tools available with the control panel supplied by the hosting service provided. Please ensure you upload in Binary if using an FTP client. The convert.php file and the associated SQL file for the forum software must be uploaded to the same folder a the blank SMF install.


Uploading Before Extracting

Some control panels have the ability to extract an archive, such as cPanel. This allows for hassle free uploading and extraction of the archive. Once the archive is uploaded, select the extract option to extract the archive to the desired location. Ensure that overwrite files is selected to have the newer files replace the old ones.

Extracting Before Uploading

If extracting abilities are not available inside the control panel, the archive can be extracted before uploading. Generally right clicking the archive and selecting the extract all option will work. The directory structure should be retained when the upgrade archive is extracted, so all files and directories are in the correct places.

Backup the Database

Before starting the conversion process a backup of the live database should be taken, this protects the forum from accidental damage and any issues from converting. Although all steps are taken, and extensive testing carried out, sometimes issues develop so having a backup is crucial.

Backup a Database Using phpMyAdmin

phpMyAdmin allows the option to export a database, from the initial page select the export option and follow the instructions and select your forum softwares' database, these are different based on host.

Backup a Database Using a Control Panel

If the hosting service provides a control panel interface, this can be used to backup a database. Selecting the Backups or Backups Wizard option should take you to prompts for backing up a database. With different hosts these options may have different names.

Database access

The conversion tools will access all your existing forum software data through the database, for this to work correctly SMF will require access to read the existing database. On most hosts this will not be an issue, users can be added to the database through a hosting control panel.

Run the Convert Tool

The final step in converting to SMF is running the conversion tool. Navigate to the directory where SMF resides, and then open the convert.php file. For eg: www.yourdomain.com/forum/convert.php.

Converter Settings

Path to SMF
The path to the SMF install (eg. /home/user/SMF), the default information will usually be correct.
Path to forum software
The path to the existing forum software (eg. /home/user/forum).
SMF Database Password
As a security measure SMF requires the SMF database password to be entered to stop unauthorized conversions.
Set SMF's default character set to
Select a character set for the SMF install to use, usually the default will be acceptable, if in doubt select UTF-8.


Finishing the Conversion Process

Once all parts of the conversion have completed, check the box to remove the conversion files from the server. If this does not work they will need to be deleted via FTP. All conversion files should be removed from the server once the conversion process is complete as they are a major security risk if left on a server unattended.

Congratulations on converting to SMF successfully!