Transferring posts from one blog to another

As a preface to a piece on setting up your school blogsite for the new year I’m putting up some instructions on transferring posts and comments from one blog to another. The instructions here are for WordPress, however, since practically every blog platform uses a standard .xml file for exporting its content, it really doesn’t matter which blog platform you are using.

Why would I want to do this?

Suppose you set up a blog called “Year 6”. At the end of the school year you want to set up a new blog for next year’s year 6, which will also be called “Year 6”. In practical terms it’s impossible to rename a blog, so what you need to do is set up a new blog called something like “Year 6 08 09”, transfer the existing Year 6 blog’s content into the new blog and then remove it from the original blog leaving your Year 6 blog empty ready for your new class.

Step 1: Creating a new blog

You need to be a blog admin in WordPress Multi User to set up a new blog. Simply click “Site Admin” > “Blogs” and then fill in the form to create a new blog.

Step 2: Exporting your existing blog

From the list of blogs select the backend of the blog which you wish to export. At the bottom of the menu on the left, click “Tools” > “Export”
Now simply download the .xml file and save it to your computer (note, you are able to select individual authors of posts to download by changing the option setting).

What gets exported and what doesn’t? When exporting content the .xml file will contain the links to all photos, embeds, comments etc, but will not export any details of the blog’s theme, sidebar widgets or links. Also, if you have uploaded photos to a blog that you subsequently delete, the photos may not display on your new blog (a good argument for hosting photos separately on Flickr or Photobucket).

If you are using a different blog platform to WordPress, simply search for the export function on that platform. In my experience they all work in pretty much the same way.

Step 3: Importing to your new blog

Now, from the list of blogs on Site Admin, select the backend of the blog to which you wish to import the content. Click on “Tools” > “Import”. Now select “WordPress” from the list of platforms presented (or the alternative blog platform that you are using) and browse to and select your exported .xml file. The process is dependent upon the amount of material in your exported file, but shouldn’t take more than a few moments.

That’s it.

All you have to do now is play around with the theme and sidebar widgets etc to get the blog how you want it to look and you have finished. In my next post on this I will suggest a way in which you collect all your archive blogs together without cluttering your homepage with loads of links.

Once you have checked that everything has successfully transferred into your new “Y60809” blog, you can go back to the original “Year6” blog and use the bulk delete function on the “edit posts” list to delete your content en masse. Note, check carefully that the export/import routine worked properly before doing this! It’s also possible simply to delete the old blog from the blog list and recreate it, but if you do this, you’ll have to set up the theme and sidebar links etc from scratch.



About john sutton

Founder of Creative Blogs.

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Creative Blogs are the UK's leading educational blogging specialists. We build Wordpress Multisite blog platforms for schools.

One Response to “Transferring posts from one blog to another”

  1. Ben September 30, 2009 11:43 pm

    Thanks very much for the practical steps on setting up a blog. One of my projects for this year is incorporating blogging into my units. I’m still working out the logistics, but I found an ebook at called “Blogging in the Classroom” that has been a big help to me in getting ready and integrating it into my lessons. Blogging is a simple way to promote discussion and publish student work, in an online environment that students are comfortable in, and I’m expecting it to be a great tool in my classes. Great post!


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