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Successful vB 3.8 to SMF Conversion!

Started by Darrell Lawrence, November 27, 2019, 05:13:07 PM

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Darrell Lawrence

So my server provider decided to eliminate PHP5.6, and run with PHP 7.1, 7.2 or 7.3.

vBulletin 3.8.11 will run on PHP7, but it is also at EoL. Plus, I used vBAdvanced CMPS with it, and that got totally famboozled.

So I decided to move away from vB, even though I could use their vB4 version. However, it too is entering EoL territory.

I've seen Simple Machines before, having used it on an actresses website I designed for her many years ago.

Anyways, after some initial tests and reading here about problems with converting, I figured I'd try something I hadn't seen mentioned - using an htaccess file, I forced the server to use PHP5.6 while trying to convert.

I downloaded a back-up of my vB database, and had to make two major changes - I needed to change it to a utf-8 format, as that is what SMF installs as. So I opened it up in an editor that could have a file that size, and did a "replace" from latin1 to utf8. I also located everywhere a URL had /forums and changed it to a new folder name that I'd be using. I then uploaded it to a new database, thus leaving the original completely intact. I would be using this new folder and database for the conversion.

Instead of using the latest version of SMF, I went with smf_2-0-rc3. It also installed on the new database in utf-8 format.

I downloaded, then uploaded into the new folder a copy of my vB files, pointing to the new database as well. I went to the Admin area of this "new" vB and changed the storage type for both attachments and avatars TO THE DATABASE. This was important, based on what I have read here at SMF.

So... all was set.

I uploaded the convert.php file and the vbulletin37_to_smf.sql file, then started the conversion, using the new database and new folder for vB in the set-up.

Before I knew it, the conversion went off without a hitch (other than the very last step, which really doesn't matter , as stats can be updated within SMF).

After the conversion, and checking to make sure everything, including attachments and avatars converted over, I then upgraded to the latest stable version of SMF. Again, no issues.

So where I stand now is to work on the design of the forums, make adjustments on Forum permissions, etc (to include getting a new CMPS).

I will also be integrating my 4images into the new SMF.

The new forums are now live yet, given the back-end work I need to do, but just know - It was a successful conversion.

Thank you to EVERYONE who put time and effort into making the conversion possible.

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Biology Forums

Congrats with the conversion!

Can we see it in action?

Darrell Lawrence

Darn it. Meant to say the converted forums are NOT live, as I have a lot of back-end work to do.

Aw heck with it... [nonactive] is vB in it's new folder on the new DB. It's identical to the current live version. [nonactive] is where the converted SMF forums are.

Biology Forums

That's great! Any plans on customizing the theme?

Darrell Lawrence

Yeah, I plan on making the theme the same design as what I have on the vB version.

Biology Forums

Quote from: Darrell Lawrence on November 28, 2019, 02:39:05 AM
Yeah, I plan on making the theme the same design as what I have on the vB version.

In the meantime, I think you should install the better version of SMF's default theme found here: It's fully responsive, so I think your members will appreciate it.