Upgrading: How does it work?

Modified on Tue, 13 Feb 2018 at 01:04 PM

If you're using the Vortx onboarding app to upgrade from an earlier version of your store, some things will transfer to your upgraded store, while some things will be lost in the process. This article should provide clarity to what is saved, and what is lost during the upgrade.

What is saved:

  • Any image files associated with published products, variants, categories, manufacturers, distributors, departments
  • Order history, customer & admin accounts and passwords
  • Download files (downloads & orderdownloads)
  • Your entire product catalog, any mapping to entities (categories, manufacturers) or stores (if using MoreStores)
  • Every last piece of data saved in the 'stock' database tables - things like coupons/promotions, quantity discounts, customer levels, topics, etc...
  • A new mobile-friendly responsive design

What is lost:

  • Any image files associated with unpublished or deleted products, variants, categories, manufacturers, distributors, departments
  • Any customized skin or other code on your live site
  • Any custom folders & their contents
  • Any data in custom tables (if the database table wasn't in the 'off the shelf' version of your live site, then it won't be migrated)

What kind of goes away:

Topics with names beginning with "0-" are migrated, but suffixed with _old, and marked as unpublished. We save them so that you can still access the content, but it won't be used on your site unless you manually copy the content from those topics into the published topics associated with your skin. Topics in this '0-' format are associated with earlier versions of Vortx responsive templates, and older versions of responsive template topic contents aren't always compatible with newer versions. This could cause errors on your new store. So if you had an earlier version of a responsive template, you'll need to reconfigure your skin through the onboarding app.

How it works:

In a nutshell: When you use the Vortx onboarding app, you'll be asked to provide FTP access to your live website. This will need to be set up for your webserver (not your database server!). You can use the same FTP login information that you use for your live site.

The app will use your FTP access to connect to your live site and upload a file to your /images directory. This file contains a program that will connect to your database and retrieve, encrypt, and stream information from your database over to the Vortx network to a blank database that will be upgraded to the latest version, and paired up with your new responsive design.

To further understand what will and won't be preserved during your upgrade process, let's first clarify what a store is comprised of. Your store is powered by a combination of two elements: 

  1. Files
    • This is the set of files which contain code that's used for your store. The FTP access your host provides you with will connect you to these files. For example, when you upload images for products in your admin console, they will end up in sub-folders located in the /images folder. When you customize your store layout using .css, .master or .cshtml files, the files are edited and stored alongside the rest of the website code in sub-folders within your Skins or App_Themes / App_Templates folders. One of the files here will hold connection information that connects the set of files to be used along with your database. Depending on your version, this will be stored in a file called 'web.config' or 'ConnectionStrings.config'
  2. Database
    • Your database holds all of your store’s account, order, product, category, pricing, and inventory information. Generally, anything you do in your store's admin console will either add, change or delete the data that's stored in your database.

When you upgrade, you'll keep all of your historical order details, any customer information, your entire product catalog and any associated mappings to categories, your store's shipping & payment settings, etc. Our upgrade process ensures that you retain all of this information by migrating everything that's stored in your database. Because older sets of files aren't always compatible with the newer software versions, the majority of your site files will not be retained. Your earlier version skin is likely incompatible with today's newer mobile & tablet devices as well, so rather than keeping your old skin, we supply you with a choice of mobile & tablet-friendly templates to replace your earlier store design. The exception here is with images - you'll have .jpg, .gif, or .png files associated with your products & categories - you won't want to lose those, so our upgrade process will migrate those over for you.

In conclusion, the upgrade will keep vital information to your store (published products, categories, departments, etc., order history, download files, product catalog, and any data saved in ‘stock’ database tables.) You will lose images associated with unpublished or deleted products, categories, departments, etc., and any custom changes you make. This includes things like, custom skins, custom code, custom folders and tables, and their contents. In order to make this process go as smoothly as possible we highly recommend that you save and backup any custom change you make to your site as these are deleted every time you run the upgrade, or make your staging site “go live.”

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