Perform flawless cPanel – Plesk migration for webhosting

Performing server migrations play a critical role in our Outsourced Tech Support services for web hosting companies. A business expansion or need for enhanced security, anything can trigger a server migration.

cPanel and Plesk are the major control panels used in web hosting servers. As a result, migrating accounts from cPanel to Plesk or vice versa, is a commonly scheduled task by our dedicated support techs.

At Bobcares, server migrations are executed with proper planning and utmost caution, or else it can lead to website downtime. Today, we’ll see how we handle cPanel to Plesk migrations efficiently for our customers who are web hosts.

cPanel to Plesk pre-migration check points

To ensure a seamless migration process, we always follow a pre-migration checklist to prepare the two servers before starting the migration. Otherwise, there are chances that the migration fails in between and lead to loss of time and effort.

At Bobcares, our dedicated support specialists have expertise performing migration tasks without incurring much downtime. Here are the major tasks we perform before doing the cPanel to Plesk migration:

  1. We ensure that adequate disk space is available in both the source (cPanel) and destination (Plesk) servers. We ensure that the free space in source is approximately equal to the data to be transferred and in destination is 5-10 GB more than that.
  2. We verify that the cPanel and Plesk versions are compatible to perform transfer using the Migration manager. Though cPanel version 9, 10, or 11 should work, we always keep the versions latest and updated. The destination server is installed with Parallels Plesk latest version (11.0.9+), with the latest updates.
  3. The Plesk Migration and Transfer Manager component is then installed on the Plesk server (destination).
  4. To avoid IP related issues, we assign at least one shared IP address and the same number of dedicated IP addresses in the Plesk server, as in the source cPanel server.
  5. If there are mailing lists in source server, we install and configure Mailman mailing list manager in Plesk server to handle them.
  6. For the destination server to connect to source server, we allow the Plesk server IP in the cPanel server firewall and configure source to accept SSH connections from the destination server for root user.
  7. During the migration process, we keep SELinux disabled on the destination server.
  8. cPanel and Plesk have different paths to store the virtual hosts. If the destination server is new, we change the location of virtual hosts on the destination server from ‘/var/www/vhosts’ to ‘/home’, for a seamless transfer.

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Performing cPanel to Plesk migration

Depending on the size and speed of the network, the time for migration may vary. We make a rough estimate based on the total data and schedule the migration during off-peak hours for quick transfer.

We then configure the ‘Migration & Transfer Manager’ in the Plesk interface with the source server details such as IP address, password, upload path, data to the transferred and the custom rules to be applied in case of conflicts during migration.

A major task to perform here is the ‘IP address mapping’, where we map the shared IP and the dedicated IPs in the source cPanel server to the corresponding IP addresses in the Plesk server.

Once the migration is completed, we check the report to verify that it has successfully copied over. In many cases, we’ve seen errors being reported during the migration, which we then analyze and fix before trying to re-copy.


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