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Migration Tips

Migrating the Drupal way. Part IV: helping your admins with hook_help() and Advanced Help

Training is a huge consideration when moving to a new software platform. You have to ask yourself, how steep is the learning curve? How many people do you have to train? How many of those people are going to drag their feet? It has been my experience that no matter how much easier the new solution is, people still resist change. Sooner or later, you will have to send them off and running. For the fourth installment of my migration blog, I'm going to recommend leveraging Drupal's built in help functions as well as the Advanced Help module to make the transition smoother.

Migrating the Drupal way. Part III: managing multiple sites with Drupal

OK, you've got a few sites. Maybe you are a company with a handful of product sites, or maybe you are a university with hundreds of department sites. When working with more than one site you will inevitably run into problems with maintenance, revision control, deployment and the like. For my third installment on migrating to Drupal, I'd like to show you how using Multisite installations can make your life a whole lot easier.

Migrating the Drupal way. Part II: saving those old URLs

For the second part of my migration blog, I want to touch on the importance of maintaining URLs from your old site and demonstrate some examples of how to capture them in Drupal. Search engine traffic and other referrals are invaluable when it comes to the success of a site. I've managed sites that have received upwards of 100,000 referrals a day from Google alone. This is not even to mention all of the external links and bookmarks to your pages. If you are thinking about migrating to Drupal and have not considered the importance of maintaining old URLs, you definitely should. The impact of losing that amount of traffic could be catastrophic, but luckily the solution is reasonably simple.

Migrating the Drupal way. Part I: creating a node.

Update: Acquia has released a great migration whitepaper to help you get ready to move to Drupal.

My position with Acquia will find me helping out with a lot of migrations and upgrades. I'm going to embark on a multiple-part blog to discuss some of the common techniques that I use when moving clients to Drupal.

Migrating to Drupal can seem intimidating if you already maintain a database-driven website. However, populating a Drupal site with your current content might be easier than you think. Whether you are migrating from a popular CMS or a fully custom application, you can easily use Drupal modules to mimic your current data structures and migrate your data using a simple custom PHP script. I should note that while there are several different methods to accomplish this task, this happens to be my favorite.