How do I deal with a failed clone/restore process?
The clone/restore process can fail for several different reasons, but here are some steps that can be made in order to resolve the issue.
If you are receiving a “empty response” or “cannot download backup file” message when trying to clone a site, please check the following link.
If that is not the case, the first option you may try is to choose the “Clean WordPress” installation option and see if it works properly.
If it does, then the problem is most probably caused by the backup size of the source site and the lack of server resources on the destination site to handle the whole cloning process.
What can you do?
1. Check (with your hosting provider) if you have access to UNZIP and MYSQL commands on the clone destination server. This is probably the most important part, because extracting files and restoring the database will be a lot faster.
2. Increase the PHP execution time and the PHP memory limit on the clone destination server (ask your hosting provider to do this for you if you are not familiar with your server setup).
A good start would be with “execution_time = 600s” and “memory_limit = 256M” if your site backup is around 200MB. Please note: that a higher PHP Memory Limit might be needed if your site is bigger.
Also, the PHP version should be at least 5.3.0 (5.5.0 is recommended).
3. There’s another tip which may resolve the problem. In most cases, the cloning process will be faster if the backup file is stored on the same server as the clone destination site.
– Download the backup file manually and rename it to be easier to remember i.e. “my_site_backup.zip”
– Upload the backup file via FTP/File Manager somewhere on the destination server
– Then try to clone again via the “Backup URL” option, by inserting the URL to your uploaded backup file on the destination server i.e. http://www.my-destination-site/temp/my_site_backup.zip
4. If the clone process still fails, you can go back and try to create another backup, but now with some files (folders) excluded in order to reduce its size. Then, you can copy those excluded files (folders) manually to the destination server after successful cloning.
5. There is also a manual clone/restore which works in 99% of the cases and ignores any problems caused by the lack of server resources.
A complete step-by-step guide on this subject can be found here.
Additional requirements for cloning
Finally, if you are having problems even with using the “Clean WordPress” installation option, please make sure that the following conditions are met:
– In order for the clone tool to work properly, at least one of the following functions has to be enabled on your site server:
proc_open(), system(), passthru()
Asking your hosting provider to enable one of the aforementioned functions will surely help.
– Make sure that the correct permissions are set! Log into your website’s root via an FTP client and check whether the permissions for files are set to 644 and for folders to 755 (these are the optimum values).
The permissions can easily be changed by right clicking on a file/folder and by going into File permissions.
More on this subject can be found here.
– The clone/migration wizard needs ‘allow_url_fopen‘ option to be activated on your site server. Asking your hosting provider to enable this option will surely help.
– ManageWP uses fopen() and fsockopen() PHP functions to download a backup file to your destination server. Check with your hosting provider and make sure that these functions are enabled.
You should also check out whether the site server timeouts could be preventing the clone script from proceeding. For more on this subject, check out our Site Server Timeouts page.
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Home › Forums › Troubleshooting and Support › WP Clone Plugin – Can’t Move Backup from Localhost to Production Site
This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Adwebvertising 2 years, 5 months ago.
At the April WP meetup, Chris K. showed how easy it is to move a WP site using the plugin ‘WP Clone’ by WP Academy. So I tried it at home. Didn’t work for me; lots of problems. I’m at a stuck point with moving a site, and would appreciate any help anyone can offer.
My hosting provider is GoDaddy (chosen by a client of mine). I created a test production site in a subdirectory under the top level domain (TLD) called ‘mysite.com/wp’ and installed a fresh copy of WP (v3.9.1 as of this writing) running the ‘2014’ theme on which to experiment with WP Clone. I deleted all plugins with the new install, and then installed just the WP Clone plugin. When I attempted to restore my dev site on the test production server, I received the following error message:
‘The plugin encountered an error while extracting the zip file using WP’s zip file extractor,the following error message was returned:
Error Message : Incompatible Archive.
Temporary files created in /home/content/17/11571317/html/wp/wp-content/wpclone-temp will be deleted.’
Apparently this is not a new phenomenon, as a search of the WP support forum confirmed. The workaround is to copy the backup zip file created by WP Clone on the dev server and upload it via FTP to the test production server. Place the zip file in the target directory: wp-content/uploads/wp-clone. Then paste the backup url from the dev site into the ‘restore’ field on WP Clone, and select ‘Restore’. Should work.
I can’t get that far because I can’t move the zip file up to the test production server using SFTP. The transfer times out because the zip file is too big (about 600 MB). This in itself is surprising, since a backup of the site normally is about 180 MB.
A GoDaddy customer rep suggested unzipping the zip file, and parceling the package up in pieces. Probably a good idea, but it defeats the purpose of the zip file. They said the time out was imposed by my ISP (Charter Communications) to prevent media piracy.
Any suggestions on how to proceed? Is something amiss with the size of the backup by WP Clone? Should I use another file copy system, like WordPress Duplicator (recommended by others)?
I want to prove to myself that I can successfully clone a site from development to test production before I attempt this with a live site.
Well, I solved the problem and moved the site. Details on the solution are available in the WP Support forum for the WP Clone plugin. . Lessons learned from the whole experience:
1) Moving a site with the WP Clone (WPC) plugin is not as straightforward as the plugin authors make it out to be. Cutting & pasting a url from one site to another did not restore the site on a new server. I had to upload the zip file from my localhost to the production server, AND overwrite the production server db tables using my site db backup. WPC only installed part of my site. Not a satisfying experience.
2) The security plugin ‘WordFence’ interfered with changing the data strings in my database from my dev to production site url. That’s 2 security plugins that have given me problems (Better WP Security being the other). Not sure how I’m going to deal with securing my site in the future.
3) Even though my ISP’s upload speeds tested out at 4-5 Mbps, the actual upload speeds via (S)FTP were barely 10% of that. My ISP imposed a 5-minute data transfer limit with SFTP. Given the large size of the site backup, I had to use unencrypted FTP. I’m going to have to look into how I can improve upload times from my localhost to production server. Data transfer was a major bottleneck in moving the site.
Another plugin that looks interesting and promising for cloning and moving a site is ‘Duplicator’. If anyone has had experience using that, please post here and let us know what you think.
- This reply was modified 4 years, 9 months ago by Robert Gadon.
- This reply was modified 4 years, 9 months ago by Eric Juden.
Thanks for posting your findings Robert! The link to your solution was broken, so I edited and fixed it.
In my experience I have had nothing but issue after issue when doing just about anything regarding migration of WordPress from GoDaddy hosting to a superior hosting platform (namely our own). As it pertains to the WP Clone plugin I just ran into a similar instance. Here is problem I encountered and the solution I used and how it worked perfectly for me.
As the plugin instructions depict you must first install the plugin on the site that you are wanting to move.
After the plugin is installed you make the back up and are issued a link to the zip file.
Next you have to go to the new hosting platform with WordPress installed and upload and install the WP Clone plugin on that instance.
You select the “restore from backup” radio button and paste the link produced in the first step into the required field, check the box and submit.
In a perfect world this would install the copy on your new WordPress site…VOILA! Right?
Well..I got a server error! So here is what I did to resolve the issue.
I opened up the original site via FTP (since GoDaddy does not offer a WHM or cPanel for their WordPress hosting platform- my client chose them not me). I went to the wp-content/uploads/wp-clone folder and downloaded the zip file that was created initially.
I then used the file manager on the new host and uploaded the zip file to my root directory
Next I went into WP CLONE and chose the restore backup option.
I pasted the link back in and changed the domain name to the new domain like so http://www.newdomain.com/file.zip
I checked the box confirming the installation and hit the “go” button or whatever it is…and BAM…the site was up on the new host with no problems.