I am the new webmaster for the site, eastmoreland.org, and we are going to do a major revision/theme change and update, but I would like to leave the current site up, and unchanged while I work on a copy. Do I need a subdomain, or what is the best way to do this? I do have a demo site on wordpress.com, with the theme change, at enamotifdemo.wordpress.com. I need to have the demo/workspace hosted, in order to be able to use e-commerce and other plug-ins. As you can see below, 3 chats with support have not really helped, though I have learned that creating a sub-domain is a pain. I believe I would rather point a new domain at the enamotifdemo.wordpress.com site.
Is that the way to go?
The first chat I had with support directed me to:
13:26:58] Joseph R: Perform this guide:
[13:30:22] Joseph R:
This will allow the same files, moved over, new database (copied existing), and site urls updated to subdomain so you can work on it
For a staging site environment.
Here is the second chat gist:
Steve Keller: Man...steps 3 through 7 seem like a pain, given that all I am doing is creating a copy site, on which I will do edits, theme change and updates. Can you guys do that for me, or do you think Wordpress would?
[14:34:43] Chris S: If you are just moving the site files to another domain directory for testing purposes you can just download the files via FTP then upload those same files to the test directory
[14:34:54] Chris S: You can create a new db for testing purposes
[14:35:03] Chris S: then when done you can upload it to the main one
[14:37:19] Steve Keller: No testing involved. I am just going to work on the site on a subdomain, leaving the eastmoreland.org site up, and when the subdomain is ready, it will replace the primary.
[14:38:18] Chris S: Okay, that would be similar. So any changes made in the sub domain directory just move them back to the primary directory. Same with the database. You can just reimport it or even change the config file to use the updated database.
[14:39:11] Steve Keller: Dude...you're speaking Greek to me.
[14:39:47] Chris S: Haha its okay. Trying to simplify the guide best I can. The guide does provide a little more information but if you follow it you should be okay
[14:41:20] Steve Keller: It looks like I have to create a mysql name, even though the database is there, mysql.eastmoreland.org??
[14:41:41] Chris S: you should be able to use the same hostname.
[14:45:18] Steve Keller: so I did that, without adding the "enarev"...Is that right? Would there be a point in cleaning up/clearingout some of the old databases?
[14:46:50] Chris S: That would be up to you and what you wish to do.
[14:47:07] Chris S: It would be a matter of preference really
[14:51:53] Chris S: Was there anything else I can assist you with?
[14:52:00] [14:52:38] Chris S: Its best to keep the databases separate. If not then yes changes will affect both sites that use it.
[14:53:26] Chris S: When you work on the subdomain, the home and siteurls as well as other links will need to be updated to the subdomain url
[14:53:57] Chris S: https://codex.wordpress .org/Changing_The_Site_URL
[14:54:34] Steve Keller: This is above my paygrade. Is there a service you provide that we can pay for you guys to do this?
[14:54:48] Chris S: Unfortunately no we don't
[14:55:00] Chris S: This would be web development which we don't do.
The third try yielded nothing, though I did find out that using a subdomain and trying to point it to a wordpress.com site, is not doable.
You say I can just point to my wp.com site, and thereby not have to deal with setting up the 8 steps of the protocol I sent?
[11:39:35] Daniela: I am reading it over
[11:42:26] Steve Keller: Once we get the enarev.eastmoreland.org site ready for primetime, I imagine it is not tough replacing the current with the new, though the new would really be just the host pointing to wordpress.com?? I was going to try the recommended subdomain route because I thought there might be some benefit, but once enamotifdemo is accessed by enarev.eastmoreland.org, it is able to use plug-ins, e-commerce, forums, etc.
[11:42:30] Daniela: you can just point it to wordpress so that you dont have to go thorugh all the steps, because those steps are required if you want to use a subdomain with the same content
[11:43:49] Steve Keller: Essentially it is the same content, because I copied it to enamotifdemo from eastmoreland.org.
[11:48:06] Daniela: ok did you also copy the database?
[11:48:15] Daniela: because 2 sites cannot share the same database
[11:51:24] [11:53:32] Daniela: one moment let me take a look
[11:54:40] Daniela: enarev.eastmoreland.org is the domain you want clear?
[11:56:01] Daniela: enarev.eastmoreland.org does not have any wordpressfiles in it
[11:58:48] Steve Keller: I realize...that is the process I did not complete, and I am trying to just use DNS mapping to enamotifdemo.wordpress.com, to avoid all the hassle. enarev.eastmoreland.org is the domain I would like to point at enamotifdemo.wordpress.com.
[12:00:09] Daniela: wordpress can only have you point to them via name server change?
[12:04:28] Daniela: i would contact wordpress and see if you can just point to the IP. Because, if you do change the name servers it will affect the main site eastmoreland.org
[12:07:37] Steve Keller: But what does that error message mean, that enarev.eastmoreland.org "has not been registered"? Can you fix that? On the database set-up I tried to do, for step 3, I was told to use the same database, so I didn't create an "enarev....mysql..."host name. Can you see what I am referring to, at https://panel.dreamhost.com/index.cgi?tree=goodies.mysql&? It seems there is a bad datebase, named myhsql...is that a valid one?
[12:09:33] Daniela: the reason wordpress thinks that is because enarev.eastmoreland.org is a subdomain
Daniela then dropped the chat.
[12:09:49] info: You are not currently in a chat session.
Would it be best, the least hassle, to just register a new domain, not as a subdomain, and then point that to the enamotifdemo.wordpress.com site?
Sorry for the length of this, but hopefully you haven't had to read it all, to get an idea of the issues I am having.