Friday, June 23, 2006

Moving To Your Blog To External Publishing? Plan Carefully!

Not everybody is aware of this detail, but Blogger One Button Publishing has 2 components:

  1. The Blogger web site creation database, ie "Blogger.com".
  2. The Blogger hosted web sites, ie "Blogspot.com".

Look carefully at your blog address. Is it "whatever.blogger.com"? Nope, it's probably "whatever.blogspot.com". Or it's something else entirely, in which case you've already done what I'm discussing.

If you've had your blog for a while, and you tire of the limitations and problems that are common with Blogspot web sites,

  • Storage limitation, ie 300MB of pictures maximum.
  • Name limitation, ie "whatever.blogspot.com".
  • The ugly Navbar at the top of the page.

Then you may be ready to publish your blog externally, ie outside of "Blogspot.com".

But, if you're going to switch to external publishing, think first.

  • If you ever tire of external publishing, and want to move back to your original blogspot.com address, you may have to contact Blogger Support, and have them delete yet another spam blog.
  • If you have any readers that you want to keep, you should plan on setting up a stub blog at your old address, saying something like

    This blog has moved, please make a note of the new address:
    http://whatever.example.com
  • If you plan to notify your readers separately, and simply abandon the current blog, you may have to contact Blogger Support, just to delete the old blog.

Minimise your exposure to potential spambot hijacks. Follow this procedure for migrating your blog to external publishing. Think about each step first, and do them in sequence.

  1. Setup the new host, get the domain name straight, put a stub website there, and test it.
  2. Setup a new blog, with a stub post as above, containing a single link, to your new, external host. Publish the new blog to a throwaway blogspot.com address, and test it.
  3. Backup your current blog, as it is now in Blogspot.com.
  4. Backup the template, into a text file. Save the backup file in several places.
  5. Change the Blogger settings, on your current blog, to publish to the external host.
  6. Change the Blogger settings, on your stub blog, to publish to your current blogspot.com address.
  7. Republish the main blog, to the external host.
  8. Republish the stub blog, to the just vacated main blogspot.com address.

If I was doing this, I would do all steps at the same time, one after the other. I would probably not take a rest break, and I certainly wouldn't let the sun go down, before completing the last step. Seriously. Read Spam Blogs #3, if you don't understand how frustrating it will be for you to have to have your vacated blogspot address used for a splog.

(Edit 2007/6/18): It is possible that Blogger has enhanced their FTP publishing procedures so these precautions may not be necessary. Read the instructions on the FTP Publishing wizard carefully.

(Edit 9/25): Also, read Spammers stole my old URL during transfer to FTP hosting!, for a real example of this scenario.

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3 comments:

Davros said...

By publishing from the stub blog to your vacated blog you are saving the url and Blogger won't release the url? Am I right in desribing what you are saying? Also when you mean publish from the Blogger stub blog you mean by FTP?

http://imus-show.blogspot.com/


Thanks

Chuck said...

Roy,

If you publish a stub to your vacated blog, it's the same as you publishing anything to that blog. It's your blog, just as it was before. Since it's your blog, Blogger can't release it.

If you're publishing from a Blogger blog to a Blogspot blog (native publishing), you just set the blog to publish to a Blog*Spot address (leave it as normally set), and publish using the normal procedure.

If you're publishing from a Blogger blog to a non Blogspot blog (external publishing), you set the blog to use FTP or SFTP.

You just decide specifically what you want to do, set the blog appropriately, and do it.

If this doesn't explain what you need to know, please post in GBH, and we can interact with you easier.
Google Blogger Help - How Do I

Davros said...

Thank you.

I think I have it. I will search through dashboard and try to understand publishing from one Blogger Blog to another Blogger blog a little better. That would be the only thing that is not obvious to me. Again, thank you.