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XF 1.1 vBulletin 4 to XenForo

Discussion in 'Installation, Upgrade, and Import Support' started by NixFifty, Jun 21, 2013.

  1. NixFifty

    NixFifty Well-Known Member


    I've been in the vBulletin camp for quite some time but vBulletin 4 is showing it's age on a site I work on, it's not fast as it used to be, there's compatibility issues, etc. So I'm looking to migrate the board over to XenForo but I have a few questions I'd like to ask. I apologise if some of these questions sound silly but not everyone that I work with is as convinced as I am, that XenForo is the way to go.

    The board has around close to 6 million posts and heavily uses attachments. If we were to migrate, would it be possible to retain these and not lose them or anything like that? This would be crucial.

    We use a ton of custom modifications but most of these features are either built in to XenForo or modifications are available in the Resource Manager. One thing is that we also have vBSEO running on it too. What would the best way of overcoming that be? Some of the people I work with are obsessed with it so naturally they'll not want that to mess up. We also rely heavily on iTrader. Is there some sort of alternative for XenForo or is that something we'll need to code up?

    We use DigitalPoint's Sphinx Search add-on. I'm assuming ElasticSearch would be just as good?

    I've seen quite a few importers around and I was wondering which would be the best way to go for me?

    I apologise if this is in the wrong section. Any guidance would be appreciated. Hopefully we can get some good answers and thus convince the others that this is the right way to go.
    ideenwerk likes this.
  2. tenants

    tenants Well-Known Member

    NixFifty likes this.
  3. PyroM

    PyroM Active Member

    Additonally, if above mentioned importer should not provide, you can use this one for importing "thank you" (vB hack "likes"), custom user fields, cms-articles and few things more:

    If you install "xenTag" before, that importer provides a button for importing "thread tags" as xenTags too. Hint: at the moment xenTags are not working with 1.2 beta.

    I did 3 test migrations till now with that importer (but 500k messages and 2GB attachments only) and am really happy, that it works so smooth and till now I do not miss data (was afraid of likes and tags).
    NixFifty likes this.
  4. Jake Bunce

    Jake Bunce XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Yes. Both aforementioned importers do attachments.

    vBSEO URLs can be redirected to the new URLs. Here is a quick redirect generator:


    Here is the XF equivalent of iTrader:


    It comes with an importer for your vB iTrader information.


    The web-based importer is more plug and play and has been widely tested but it takes longer to complete (potentially a full day in your case). If downtime is a concern for you then you can buy the CLI importer but it requires more effort and expertise to use.
    NixFifty likes this.
  5. NixFifty

    NixFifty Well-Known Member

    This is turning out better than I expected. Thanks for the help.

    When you say effort and expertise, what do you mean? I'm leaning towards this one and it does have a set of instructions. They seem simple enough. Is that all that'll need to be done? Because for example, I do recall Shawn's importer needing to be rewritten as it was specifically made for DigitalPoint. Also, about that importer, how does it work with attachments? Like what would need to be done to preserve attachments as I can't find anything regarding that.

    Sorry for so many questions, just want to get everything cleared up. Thanks for the help thus far!
  6. Jake Bunce

    Jake Bunce XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    That's the CLI importer made for very large forums. It is much faster. It is based on Shawn's importer.

    It is run via the shell and requires server admin ability. It uses many php functions that are normally turned off on shared servers. You must specify source paths and do some manual setup such as creating your XF usergroups before running the import. Avatars, attachments, and optionally posts are imported incrementally, so the first time you run the import it will take a long time after which it will only import new content on subsequent runs.
  7. NixFifty

    NixFifty Well-Known Member

    The site is running on a dedicated box so the php functions won't be a problem. Also when you say the first time I run the import, why will I need to run it again? The only bit I don't understand is how I'd get it to import attachments. That's my concern as I don't quite understand that bit. I think I'm confident with everything else though.
  8. Jake Bunce

    Jake Bunce XenForo Moderator Staff Member

    Going incremental (running it more than once to get new stuff) is only if you want to minimize downtime. Otherwise you can just run it once with your source forum turned off the whole time.

    It's one of the import steps. Upload the import script to your XF directory, edit the script to specify the vB attachment directory if you use the file system, and run it via the shell:

    php -f Export.php
    The attachment step writes directly to the XF database and storage directories. There are no special considerations. It's just another import step.
  9. NixFifty

    NixFifty Well-Known Member

    Ah right, I get you. And then after the import, the data will have been moved to xF's directory for attachments? Thanks for the help thus far Jake, you've been excellent!
  10. Jake Bunce

    Jake Bunce XenForo Moderator Staff Member

  11. NixFifty

    NixFifty Well-Known Member

    Gotcha, thanks alot!

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