About Scott Orchard
Scott Orchard is a designer and web developer living in Orange County, California, who specializes in Wordpress or Shopify-based e-commerce projects. I’m available for hire.

Migration Tips to Media Temple (dv) 4.0 from (dv) 3.5

I recently transitioned to Media Temple’s (dv) 4.0 from their (dv) 3.5, and though it was a pretty painless process, I’d like to share the following suggestions to ensure a smooth transition for anyone else considering upgrading:

  1. Following their guide was very helpful, Migration Manager makes the transition fairly straightforward:
  2. Item 12 on their guide didn’t make sense until I moved everything over. All your Domains are under Subscriptions and should be listed under your name, this is the menu you’ll use the most and it allows you to launch the Control Panel for all domains under the subscriber, which after migration will be you.
  3. The new Control Panel is where you’ll manage Users, Email Address, FTP, Stats, etc. You’ll have a Subscriptions drop down at the top which allows you to quickly switch between all domains under that subscriber. All previous email users have roles now and can now login to your server and manage their email accounts. The only caveat is that they can see all other domains on that particular Subscriber’s Control Panel. This isn’t a big deal for me, most of my customers don’t want to manage anything, but I’ll be creating different subscribers for each domain to prevent unauthorized access.
  4. I had one client that had another developer request access so I setup a limited account on Plesk 8.6, which showed up as a Domain Administrator. Since all my domains were on one Subscriber, this person had access to all my accounts, which wasn’t ideal, so I did the following.
    1. Go to the Customers Tab, create a new account with the customer contact information and give them a username and password (I used the FTP username and password to keep access the same as on the old server), but give a fake domain name, since it requires you to add domain name information when you create a customer.
    2. Go to the Subscriber panel, check the domain name in question and hit Change Subscriber at the top.
    3. This will take you to a page showing all your Customers, which for me is just myself and the other administrator. Change the subscriber, which allows the previously used FTP login to directly access the Control Panel for that domain, but not any of your other accounts.
    4. If you use Spam Assassin for email accounts, it seemed to be active for everyone by default. I use it myself and only had it active on a couple other email addresses. One of my clients complained she was missing email so I tried to raise the setting under Server Management > Settings > Spam Filter Settings in Plesk, but it didn’t seem to take. To fix this, I SSH’d into the server as root, Rebuilt Qmail/Mail server configuration and Restarted the Qmail/Mail server. After that, checking the mail log showed only the correct email addresses using Spam Assassin.

    Additional Performance Tuning recommendations, as I noticed the base configuration was maxing out my allotted RAM and didn’t want to immediately upgrade the server to a higher plan:

    1. If you use Media Temple’s name servers for DNS (all my domains point to ns1.mediatemple.net and ns2.mediatemple.net), you can disable DNS on your server. I followed the article here, second item on the page: http://wiki.mediatemple.net/w/(dv)_HOWTO:_Misc._performance_tuning. After disabling DNS I saw RAM usage drop to about 70%, and no maxed-out resource errors.
    2. If you haven’t done this before I recommend raising Courier IMAP connections on the server. I enabled this on my old server since Apple Mail would frequently report it was timing out on the email account. After the quick change, no more problems:

    Here’s a couple other links that might be useful during the transition:

    Common SSH Commands, since I always forget these: http://wiki.mediatemple.net/w/Common_SSH_Commands

    Wiki page for all things (dv) 4.0: http://wiki.mediatemple.net/w/Category:(dv)_4.0

    I hope your transition goes smoothly, I’m extremely happy with the upgrade, Plesk 10 offers a lot more bells and whistles for my clients and hosting resellers. I’ve been a happy customer with Media Temple for years, I think their service and support are top-notch and this was a welcome upgrade.

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  1. I’m currently transitioning all of my clients from the 3.5 to the 4.0, so thanks for these tips.

    I’m running into another issue with clients who use IMAP, and not being able to connect after their domain has been migrated. It’s a fairly easy fix to switch up the settings in the email client, but a bit of a pain. People don’t like it when their email gives them trouble.

    ~ Bryan

  2. Tristan

    I’m planning to switch over this weekend and I’m really hoping it copies databases verbatim and without problems.

    Most of my customers are using google apps so hopefully it’ll just be a case of adding few CNAME’s back in and pointing MT dns at google for MX, I hope.

    But if it kills all my wordpress installations I’ll be gutted.

  3. Jean Marc

    I’m in the process of migrating from our (dv) 3.5 to a new 4.0. Don’t worry about wordpress, if you use the Plesk migration manager it’s pretty much a one-step process. It’ll migrate web content, databases, and email addresses. WP sites just show up on the new server, up and running, super easy.

  4. @Tristan,

    Like Jean Marc said, I didn’t run into any problems with migration, it was a little more involved than the jump from (dv) 3.0 to (dv) 3.5, but I didn’t have to customize anything on my blog, which is WordPress. I believe it’s easier to integrate Google Apps with the new hosting package.

  5. I am currently undergoing second migration from 3.5 to 4.0 since my first was a big problem with ftp user error, “void plesk::validateSchema(plesk::tXmlDocument&, const std::string&)./xml_parse.cpp412Failed validation of the document with its internal DTD. The errors are: Element ‘ftpusers’: This element is not expected. Expected is ( sites )..”
    So the solution from MT and Plesk is just NO FIX but “edit the sub-domains that have unique FTP users, and set them to “Use the FTP user account of the main domain”.
    Anyway after doing so, now i cross finger all goes well!

  6. @rama,

    I hope it works out better the second time around. I didn’t have multiple FTP user accounts for any of my domain names, so most likely didn’t see the same error you experienced. Let me know if the solution worked and I’ll update the post.

  7. mike

    Thanks for the pointers! Have you noticed any significant page speed improvements with the DV 4.0 upgrade? From looking at MT’s page, the copy makes it sound like everything is faster, but I wonder if it’s worth the hassle to upgrade for me.

  8. @Mike,

    From what I can tell, it’s a bit faster, but the main selling point for me is the whole upgrade package. The new Plesk interface is easier to use, and seems a bit faster as well, while offering more more for resellers. The upgraded Developer Tools have made it easier for me to customize my server with any components I need, where as the (dv) 3.5 didn’t seem as user friendly while mucking around in Terminal.

  9. How long take the migration proccess from 3.5 to 4.0?

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