Moving Wordpress from shared hosting to Cloudways - how do I handle short link URL?

I just moved my Wordpress website (let’s call it travel101[.]com) from a shared host to a Cloudways-hosted server. The primary domain, travel101[.]com, is now registered with CloudFlare. However, I have a second domain (let’s call it t101[.]co) that I use for auto-generated, custom Bitly short links (generated via a Wordpress plugin). That t101.co domain was originally registered with my shared host, and its nameservers pointed to that shared host’s nameservers. But since I’m leaving that shared host, I’ve transfered t101[.]co to GoDaddy.

CloudFlare is telling me that I need to change the nameservers of t101[.]co to its own. I would do that on GoDaddy. Would that impact any of the generated short links that have already been created? Would I need to change any other settings for t101[.]co?

I hope this made sense…

In short, no. Cloudflare will just sit in the middle between your visitors and your server. If you have a working setup today, there is nothing that would impact links created before the move compared to those generated in the future. That being said, it’s good to be careful when making major changes, though. Here are some thoughts:

If you make sure to have the required DNS records in place on the Cloudflare side before you move, it should be a low risk change. Especially if you set them to “Proxy status: DNS only” (grey-clouded) initially.

Check which DNS records you have over at the current DNS provider and carefully add them to Cloudflare. When you have verified the configuration (me or someone else can take a look as well if you want), you can change the name servers at GoDaddy, give it some time (preferably a few days), and ensure that everything is still working. If the DNS configurations match, nothing should really happen.

When a few days have passed and you’re happy with the result, you can enable the Cloudflare functionality you want by first changing the www and @ (root domain) A/CNAME DNS records to “Proxy status: Proxied” (orange-clouded). So far Cloudflare DNS have responded with your server IP address. With proxying on, requests will start flowing through Cloudflare and you can take advantage of all available features. Test the default configuration and tweak things from there. You can always turn proxying off if you need to.

Thank you for your help. I’m looking at the CloudFlare vs. current DNS provider and I’m a little unsure of which (and what) I’m supposed to copy over. Additionally, there is an alert at my current DNS records that reads “NOTE: Cloudflare is Disabled! Make sure there is only one @ record.”

Is there a way to privately share screenshots of each since there is sensitive information included?

Thank you again.

Think everything except SOA and NS records. Then you shouldn’t miss anything at least :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

Oh, at your current DNS provider (not Cloudflare)? Then they have some kind of integration which I’m unfortunately not familiar with. Might just be some plugin, but Cloudflare also allow other providers to use Cloudflare for their customers (like when you host your shop website on Shopify for example, then Shopify can leverage Cloudflare in the background). This might not be the case here at all, but it’s a reason to be a little extra careful so that any previous use of your domain with Cloudflare (that you may not have been aware of) doesn’t conflict with the new Cloudflare setup. Setting up the DNS configuration and checking it before moving should take care of most potential issues, though.

Not that I’m aware of, but feel free to redact anything sensitive. It’s not necessary to see full IP addresses and domains as long as you can see it starts with 123 or ends with .com for example (so you know roughly what it contains). I can’t verify the setup by querying Cloudflare name servers then, but I can provide some guidance on how to do it instead when we get that far.

Thanks so much for your help, @svanlund. I took screenshots of my CloudFlare and current host (Hostmonster) and placed them side-by-side. I probably redacted more than necessary, but hopefully it’s helpful. Also, I went ahead and changed the nameservers to CloudFlare’s on GoDaddy.

And here’s what I’m seeing on GoDaddy:

I won’t be able to make any changes on GoDaddy’s side for a day or two.

Thanks again!

Great, I see that your name servers have been changed. Whether the new name servers are used everywhere is just a matter of time now.

You certainly have quite a few records :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes: I’ll admit I haven’t compared them one by one. There are a few odd-looking ones over at Hostmonster (“mail.mail”) which I guess you are not moving over.

If you want to compare the actual configurations, you can bring up your terminal (Windows cmd or equivalent) and use the following commands. If “dig” doesn’t work, use the “nslookup” ones instead. The examples below show how to query the respective name servers for the mail.example.co record. For any record you deem crucial to have moved over, you should expect the output of the two dig/nslookup commands to match (as in same IP returned for example).

dig @ns1.hostmonster.com mail.example.co
dig @greg.ns.cloudflare.com mail.example.co

nslookup mail.example.co ns1.hostmonster.com
nslookup mail.example.co greg.ns.cloudflare.com

By the way, “Proxy status: DNS only” is a great start. Then you can look into using Cloudflare features later when you know that the basic DNS configuration works.

The nslookup command worked. If I understand correctly, both of the outputted IP addresses are the same. Here’s what I’m seeing:

C:\Users\XXX>nslookup mail.example[.]co ns1.hostmonster[.]com
Server: UnKnown
Address: 162.XX.XX.157

Name: mail.example[.]co
Address: 67.XXX.XX.88

C:\Users\XXX>nslookup mail.example[.]co greg.ns.cloudflare[.]com
Server: greg.ns.cloudflare[.]com
Address: 108.XXX.XXX.115

Name: mail.example[.]co
Address: 67.XXX.XX.88

Great! Yes, that looks good! And then you can do the same thing with any other subdomains/records you want to check by substituting mail.example.co.

If the record you want to check is something other than an A or CNAME, do it like this:
nslookup -type=txt example.co greg.ns.cloudflare.com (TXT in this case)

Great, thank you again for your help. You saved me so much time and frustration. I really appreciate it!

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