For a few years now I’ve kept the domain this blog runs on separate from the domains that I use for my email delivery. I no longer see any reason to keep the content seperate so I decided to see what I needed to do in order to consolidate these two sites into one shared server site.
Now since Brandy and I actively get email to the domains on the moving site and I didn’t want to edit any posts to point to a new location, I had to set up a few goals (listed below) to accomplish in the move. Once these goals are all met the change shoudl be fairly minute, although I can’t really test to see if these work until going into production. Luckily my users are understanding and won’t cry too much about down time (har har).
- Redirect links to point to the new location transparently
- Ensure that email service is not interrupted
- Consolidate static content from old sites into one directory to ease WordPress upgrades
Before I started using Flickr I used a couple of different locations to store locally linked images. Since I wanted to not break these existing links I decided to use an .htaccess file to provide the redirection to the new file locations. The general syntax for .htaccess files can be found here, and my entire .htaccess file can be accessed through this link.
Making sure that email didn’t get interrupted was a much easier task that the redirection, since Brandy and I are the only 2 users for these domains. The task is especially simple since these domains are just forwarded to GMail to take advantage of their above average spam filter. I simply had to recreate the users on the new domain and then just create the .forward file in each users directory with the email address to which to forward the mail.
This was the hardest goal to accomplish and I’m not a huge fan of the route I took to accomplish it. I had previously had a “download” folder where I put random files that I linked to or installed on the site, but in order to change the name of the directory I would have to change up an untold amount of posts. In order to avoid this situation I decided to just keep the name and move old and new static content underneath this existing directory. I really wish I could have changed the name, but I didn’t feel like searching around the logs that much for links to redirect. Oh well.
So I think I’ve found viable options for the domain consolidation, but I’ll find out for sure after the switch is made on the server side. If there are any serious changes I’ll post an addendum. Hopefully everything will go smoothly, but I can’t imagine there will be too many complaints even if there is an ‘outage’. It’s not like I’ve set up service or expectation levels with myself or anything.