The move to dedicated server web hosting should be planned meticulously, follow these guidelines and the pain will be considerably reduced.
Choosing the type of server – this should be influenced by the type of site or sites that you run. If they rely heavily on databases and server-side scripting then you will benefit from a powerful CPU and increased RAM but will not necessarily require a huge hard disk, if conversely you allow uploads of photos and/or video then hard disk space will be your primary consideration.
Choosing your new web host – There are a plethora of web hosting companies around these days, the best option is to chose an established host that offers a package that suits your needs. One of your main considerations should be the support available especially when you are making the switch.
Back everything up – This cannot be stressed enough most websites are a labor of love and dynamic sites often contain information such as customer forums which cannot be rebuilt if lost. Your website files should be backed up via FTP and your database tables should be dumped.
Sign up – If you are switching hosts sign up for your new server if you are upgrading contact your host and request the upgrade.
Upload your files – Once your new sever is ready (this can take up to a week as your particular requirements may need to be built so be patient) upload your new site via FTP, and import your databases, since you are now using a dedicated server your databases will be hosted on localhost so some changing of your connection settings for your site will be required (more information can be found in my other article ‘Dedicated Servers: Moving your MySql databases to a dedicated server’).
Note. If you are upgrading your website files will usually be automatically transferred, this is not the case with your databases which are generally housed on a separate server and will need to be manually imported.
Once all this has been achieved you are ready to re-point your domain to your new DNS, to do this you need to get the address of your new DNS there are generally two which should look like this:
It should be noted that it may take up to 72hrs before the whole switch is complete, as even if the Domain Name Server updates immediately (which is not usually the case) it takes time for the routers around the internet to update their DNS databases.
One your site is up and running and you are happy with it, you can cancel your old subscription.