Frequently, you do client work and if you are fortunate enough, you can setup a development environment on your own server or your laptop (or whatever), tinker with the files, and templates, and so on — until it’s all done.

And whenever you are done, it’s time to move files.

Sounds easy? It sort of is!


Here’s a small check list of things to keep in mind when you move an installation.

  1. You may need to fix up the configuration file in order to adjust all database related settings. It’s located in app/etc/local.xml.

  2. Certain directories will need to be made writable. Writable in this case means that the webserver has to be able to write into it. Since most of the standard PHP setups are with mod_php, this will be the user www, apache or www-run (in most cases). If you (or your provider) runs php-cgi, chances are that this is not necessary.

    You may have to ask an administrator to set this up. If the administrator is not available, you can always chmod 777 these, but for obvious reasons this may be risky in a shared environment.

    The following is a list of directories (and contents) which need to be made writable:

    • app/etc/
    • var/
    • media/

    And in case you want to use MagentoConnect, there are additional directories to make writable. Please see this blog post for more info.

  3. URLs, URLs, URLs. You were working on localhost all this time and now you think you can move it over just like that? Wrong!!! ;-) But all you need to do is edit the following keys in the core_config_data table:

    • web/unsecure/base_url
    • web/secure/base_url

That’s all folks!

If you have any additions, please leave a comment!