Migration Checklist

1. Create a user account for our office

Before sending us the database you MUST have an ADMIN user created for our office. Please contact us so we can give you details on the username and email address to use.

Email address to use: wordpress@tcu.edu

2.  Make sure you are not using disallowed plugins

Because some plugins are poorly coded or incompatible with WP Engine’s platform, they are not allowed on our hosted sites. You can use the WP Engine Ready plugin to verify your site’s readiness for migration. This plugin will check your current version of WordPress Core, detect any disallowed plugins, and also highlight any incompatible functions that your site’s themes or plugins are using.

  1. Check to see if the plugins you are using have been approved by TCU
  2. Download the WP Engine plugin here
  3. Disallowed plugins

3.  Update plugins, themes, and WordPress Core

We require that you update WordPress Core, plugins, and themes prior to migration to ensure your site functions properly after migration. This can also prevent common migration issues associated with outdated software.

Note: Updating older themes and plugins may cause issues with your site.

  • Go to the Updates section of WordPress Admin for your current site.
  • Update all plugins, themes and WordPress Core.
  • Review your site to ensure everything looks and functions properly.
  • Troubleshoot and resolve any issues associated with the update.

Detailed help on updating your site

4.  Make sure your are following our web policies

Do not:

  • Do not hide the top WordPress admin bar that shows up when logged into the site
  • Do not add a link to the WordPress dashboard to the the website
  • Do not add designed by yourcompanyname or site by yourcompanyname


  • Do make sure all settings in WordPress are correct – WP Dashboard Settings
  • Do include the official arched TCU logo in the upper left hand corner and link back to the TCU Home Page (http://www.tcu.edu)
  • Do make sure you display the following: © Texas Christian University. All rights reserved.
  • Do make sure your website is responsive. To check any issues please go to http://mattkersley.com/responsive/

Read more information about our web policies


WP Engine does not allow a different database prefix so  only use the wp_ prefix. This will guarantee that everything runs smoothly when we import the database into our hosting environment.

5. WPEngine Migration Plugin

WPEngine has an automated migration plugin that makes it super easy for vendors to migrate sites built on their servers over the WPEngine’s servers. This would be the last step to complete from this checklist if you are going to use WPEngine’s Migration plugin.  You can find documentation for that plugin at: http://wpengine.com/support/wp-engine-automatic-migration/

6.  Export database from your prior hosting provider

This file contains instructions for our server’s database language (SQL) to create the posts, comments, and options from your old host on our host. The most common way of accessing your database file is through your host’s phpMyAdmin. If you need assistance locating your database, contact your current host provider.

  • Log in to your current host provider’s cPanel
  • Access phpMyAdmin
  • Select the site database, on the left, you wish to migrate
  • Click on the export button on top navigation bar 
  • Under Export Method, select Custom
  • Under Table(s), click Select All
  • Under Object creation options, make sure only the following options are checked: exportdb
  • Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click Go to save the database to your desktop

Detailed help on exporting your database


If you’re going to upload the wp-content folder then ask us to provide the mu-plugins folder so you can add the mu-plugins folder into your wp-content folder. The site will break if this folder is missing.

7.  Download the wp-content folder

The wp-content folder contains your plugins, themes, and media from your site. Depending on how big your site is, this can take a while — sometimes up to a couple of hours. Need an SFTP client? FileZilla works on all operating systems.

  • Log into your current host via their portal or FTP client.
  • Access export_content
  • Download/copy the “wp-content” folder to your computer’s desktop.
    (Select zip option if available. If not, once the wp-content folder has been downloaded, make sure to zip this folder before uploading to save uploading time and avoid corruption errors.)

Detailed help on downloading your wp-content folder

8.  Send the database and wp-content to us!