How can I transfer my SMF site?

How to migrate my Simple Machines Forum to another host? 

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If you are looking to transfer your SMF site to a new server, you will need to transfer the files to the new server and then reconfigure them to work with the new directory structure or domain name (if there are such differences).

Once the website files themselves have been transferred, along with the database your SMF uses, you will only need to make the following changes:

  1. Open “Settings.php”, located in your SMF root directory, and edit the following lines:
  • $boardurl = ‘;      # URL to your forum’s folder. (without the trailing /!)
  • $boarddir = ‘/home/user/public_html’;      # The absolute path to the forum’s folder. (not just ‘.’!)
  • $sourcedir = ‘/home/user/public_html/Sources’;      # Path to the Sources directory.

Make sure that the above paths correspond to your new directory structure.

  •  $db_name = ‘example_db’;
  • $db_user = ‘example_un’;
  • $db_passwd = ‘example_pw’;

Substitute example_db with the name of your imported SMF database, example_un with a username associated with that database and example_pw with that username’s password.

  1. Open the database your SMF is using via your cPanel > phpMyAdmin tool and edit the following entries, so that they accurately represent the new directory structure:

In the table ‘smf_settings’ change the following:

  • attachmentUploadDir : /home/user/public_html/attachments
  • smileys_dir : /home/user/public_html/Smileys
  • smileys_url :
  • avatar_directory : /home/user/public_html/avatars
  • avatar_url :

In the table ‘smf_themes’ change to the following:

  • theme_url :
  • images_url :
  • theme_dir : /home/user/public_html/Themes/default
  • theme_url :
  • images_url :
  • theme_dir : /home/user/public_html/Themes/classic
  • theme_url :
  • images_url :
  • theme_dir : /home/user/public_html/Themes/your_theme
Christian Smith Answered on September 23, 2015.
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