Expired Domain – can I access WP dashboard?

Expired Domain – can I access WP dashboard?

If your WordPress website data is still on your old web host but your old domain name has expired you can still get your old WordPress site and move it to a new domain, as well as new web host.

Problem synopsis

1. Old domain expired hence your site is not reachable by old domain name.

2. WordPress admin dashboard cannot be accessed using old expired domain name.

3. WordPress data is still on old host.

4. Client wanted to use a new web host and new domain name, but wanted the same WordPress website as hosted on old expired domain name.

Solution Steps

1. Find out your old web host’s IP address from the cpanel of you old web host, where your old WordPress website data still resides.

2. Enter this IP address and old expired domain name in the hosts file on your computer. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosts_(file)  for more details on your hosts file location.

The file is usually present in
Windows: C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\hosts
Linux: /etc/hosts
Mac: /etc/private/hosts OR /etc/hosts

You may Google for how to edit hosts file or follow instruction on this article – https://www.howtogeek.com/howto/27350/beginner-geek-how-to-edit-your-hosts-file/

After editing your hosts file, your web browser should be able to resolve your old expired domain name to the IP address of your old web host. So, now clear your browser cache, or use an incognito window (private browsing mode of your browser) to access your old WordPress website, using your old expired domain name.

3. Once your WordPress website and WordPress dashboard is accessible using your old expired domain name, you should install the Duplicator plugin on your old WordPress website.

4. Next use the duplicator plugin to create “package files” (the backup file and installer script created by Duplicator plugin) on the old expired domain’s WordPress install. Download these package files to your system. The plugin is very intuitive to use but if you want details, please follow the instructions on this page – https://snapcreek.com/blog/wordpress/techniques/how-to-move-a-wordpress-site/

5. Upload these package files to the new web host of the new domain, using cpanel (or FTP) on the new host.

6. Create a new database, and a new database user, on the new web host. Note down this info as it will be required while restoring from the duplicator package file.

7. Execute duplicator plugin’s installer.php script and in most cases you will be successful in restoring your old (expired domain) website on the new domain, new host.

8. Your website should be accessible on the new domain name now.

9. Undo the changes you made to the hosts file on your computer.

10. If your old domain has expired you have fewer options in terms of preserving SEO, but if you already had a Google search console account on the old domain, you should use the “Change of address tool” at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/9370220?hl=en&visit_id=637091560872705890-3050482164&rd=1 to inform Google about change of website address.

 

Adwords country blocking and wordfence settings in WordPress

Wordfence is a very useful plugin for wordpress. However on most sites I have worked on recently, I have realized that most webadmins just install wordfence with default settings.

However if you are using Google Adwords, then do remember to uncheck the “Block access to the rest of the site (outside the login form)” in the “Country Blocking Options” within the “Blocking” submenu of Wordfence settings.

adwords country blocking policy and wordfence settings in wordpress

 

Wordfence also explain it here.

 

Responsive web design – Make your images meaningful on different devices

Desktop screen sizes are becoming larger and at the same time the consumption of content on mobile devices is growing exponentially.

A user browsing your website on a large desktop screen will certainly appreciate the large high quality images your website might be using but those same images can hamper the mobile user experience.

I already follow some of these tips and hence really liked the solutions presented in this article –

https://www.nngroup.com/articles/big-pictures-small-screens/

This basically means your mobile website will be somewhat different from your desktop website. This would help optimize the user experience on each device. Despite this difference, your website could still be “responsive”. You do not need two completely different code bases.

If your website is using popular platforms like WordPress you can use simple plugins for detecting whether the device is a mobile and then customize content as per the device. Media Queries (CSS technique) can also help in this but using media queries may not be efficient for “hiding” large images.

This post is not about the techniques to use but to emphasize that it is important to give your users an excellent experience.

You should definitely take the time to plan how your images are being served on different devices.