[Cloner] Cloner not cloning 100%

I have raised some of the following issues on a few occasions with your team (through the chat) but I thought I would summarize it here and see what WPMU can do.

CLONER requires several fixes and I just hope that WPMU can fix them. As it stands right now, it is causing me more issues than it assists me, forcing me to look around for other solutions.

I was hoping to see some fixes applied after some of the chat session I had with support but it did not happen. So here it is….

1. Default home page : When cloning a site, the parameter in wordpress settings/reading reverts back to the default settings : Your latest post. That should not be. Home page to be displayed should remain the same as the original blog

2. I have a bilingual site and I use WPML. When cloning, it completely loses its references between english page and french pages. So rather than having let's say 25 pages french (which is the original language) and 25 english pages, I end up (after cloning) with 50 french pages where half of them are written in english. So WPML loses the connection between the pages. Bottom line: I have to redo manually the connections between the french and english pages.

3. After cloning, all hyperlinks that are part of the content still point to the original website. Let say I clone site B to Site A. After cloning, all hyperlinks that are part of the content still refer to site B. Those references should be updated to refer to site A.

Your assistance in fixing those issues would be more than welcome and would make CLONER so much more useful and easy to use. The whole WPMU community would benefit from such an upgrade.

Thank you for your assistance.
Looking forward to your answer.

  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hello Pierre,##1

    I hope you're well and I'm sorry you're experiencing issues. Thank you also for your feedback.

    I see that you have already posted that same ticket previously here:

    https://premium.wpmudev.org/forums/topic/cloner-cloner-needs-a-fix

    I realize that you're expecting issues to be fixed and that you want to "speed things up", I fully understand that. However, there's no need to post multiple times about the same issue.

    Having that said, I checked your ticket and there's indeed only one old ticket related to Cloner, from January, but that's a different thing. I have also checked your chats related to Cloner to get a better picture of the case.

    3. After cloning, all hyperlinks that are part of the content still point to the original website. Let say I clone site B to Site A. After cloning, all hyperlinks that are part of the content still refer to site B. Those references should be updated to refer to site A.

    What cloner does is it actually "clones" the site. It's not a "migration" tool. It's making an exact copy of the site that's being cloned. It does change those essential settings that are necessary to be changed to make the site work under that new address (sub-folder or a sub-domain) but it doesn't parse and affect anything else. Furthermore, making changes like this in content (posts/pages) is something that should only be done "on demand" and in many cases only selectively.

    Cloner is a great tool e.g. for creating some staging/dev sub-site on Multisite or cloning a "basic structure" for a new site.

    2. I have a bilingual site and I use WPML. When cloning, it completely loses its references between english page and french pages. So rather than having let's say 25 pages french (which is the original language) and 25 english pages, I end up (after cloning) with 50 french pages where half of them are written in english. So WPML loses the connection between the pages. Bottom line: I have to redo manually the connections between the french and english pages.

    I found the chat about the issue with WPML but there was no mention of that being confirmed bug or being reported to the developers. The chat ended up with you confirming that at the end it "did work somehow" and that you'll "play with it" and there was no any chat about it after that, neither no ticket on forum open. I understand then that after all this is an issue and in that case we need to work on this.

    That being said, I have just tested this on my own setup but I couldn't replicate that. The "connections" were maintained properly and I didn't have to "redo" any relationships between language versions. It is, however, possible that I tested it with e.g. too simple setup or there need to be some specific settings. I would like to see how it's set on your site to try to mimic the configuration on my end to test that. Do you have any testing/staging site where I could safely check it and also test on your end too?

    Could you please enable support access to it so I could check it? You can enable support access by going to "WPMU DEV -> Support" page in your site's Network Admin and clicking on "Grant support access" button there.

    1. Default home page : When cloning a site, the parameter in wordpress settings/reading reverts back to the default settings : Your latest post. That should not be. Home page to be displayed should remain the same as the original blog

    I did test that now on my test setup as well and couldn't replicate that as well so that might also be related to some specific settings/configuration. Since I already asked you to let me access affected setup to check its configuration, I'll test it again on my end once I know more about your setup and we'll then continue troubleshooting this.

    That being said, let me know please when the support access is granted. I have also close that other ticket of yours in order not to maintain duplicates and let's please continue here.

    Kind regards,
    Adam

  • Pierre

    Hello Adam,

    Thanks for your reply.

    I am sorry for raising this issue as a ticket. But this is what I thought needed to be done. I raised the issue as a "feedback" and your support staff Rupok asked me for a ticket number. As I did not hear back from him after I told him I didn't have a ticket number, I thought that he was expecting me to open one.

    I didn't mean to put pressure on the team.

    That being said...

    WMPL issue (item#2): I ran into this issue on several occasions. Strangely enough, this time, it kept the references.

    I have to say that I have last experienced this issues back in november when I last used Cloner. So maybe some fixes were applied at your end. I don't know. But this issue was present each time I used CLONER.

    I have granted you access to the site tourneurdelanse.com where I have cloned the main site to wpmu-test.

    As for the home page issue, you will notice the it reverted back to "Your latest post". Something interesting here however… I did clone the main website to wpmu-test twice. Interestingly enough, it kept the right page after the first cloning but not after the second one.

    You will noticed that the home page slider did not make it to the cloned site (and yes, I ensured that all tables were selected during the cloning process - Hence why I cloned the website a second time: to make sure I was carrying all tables). Let's call this one issue #4.

    Another issue noted (call it item#5) is that Hustle pro was completely ignored.

    Concerning the internal link (Item #3 on my list), I understand that cloner is not a migration tool but (as you suggest) a staging tool. This is what I am using cloner for… But here is the problem with keeping internal links as is.

    Let's say I have a main site: SITE A
    And a staging area: SITE B

    I do changes in the staging area to create VERSION 2 of my website and then clone it to SITE A to make it live. So all references to images that have been added to the website during the development process and that are now part of SITE A are still pointing to SITE B.

    I cannot delete SITE B without risking broken image links.

    I now want to work on VERSION 3 of the website. I cannot use SITE B because as soon as I remove any objects in site B that are referenced by SITE A, I impact the live site (SITE A).

    To avoid these issues, I have to clone SITE A to a new site: SITE C. Now I can start making changes without impacting the production site. But when VERSION 3 is ready, I clone it to replace SITE A, but yet, I now have references to SITE B and SITE C.

    ….which makes Cloner not as useful as it could be.

    Pierre

  • Adam Czajczyk

    Hello Pierre

    I apologize for a long delay on my end. I've had some extremely busy time for last couple of days here on forums and on our live chats so I, unfortunately, didn't manage to answer all my tickets on time. I'm sorry about that.

    It seem that the support access has also expired meanwhile but your explanation is quite clear. I have been testing this again and while I still wasn't able to replicate the problems on my test site, one of my colleagues was able to confirm that.

    We also got an information from developers that in case of WPML some additional compatibility solution would be required (due to the way WPML works and the associations it creates and uses), which is not yet implemented in Cloner.

    That basically means that Cloner in fact may not work properly with WPML powered setups, especially more complex ones. My test site (even with quite a lot of content) was quite simple and that's probably why I couldn't replicate the problem, though the problem indeed exists.

    Having that said, I'm still consulting that with developers if there's some option for a "hot fix" or a workaround or whether I should report that as a bug or a feature request. Please keep an eye on this ticket and I'll update it again as soon as I get an additional feedback from our developers.

    Kind regards,
    Adam

  • Panos

    Hi Pierre ,

    Apologies for late response here!

    #1. Default home page : That is stored in the page_on_front field of the options table which is copied so it shouldn't be an issue. Not sure why this happens in your case.

    #2. WPML: Since it clones all posts with meta the translations should be fine. I tested with 2-3 pages in my test site and didn't have any issue there

    #3. Links: It doesn't go through content to replace these links. I'll include here images too. I will try add a feature for this shortly.

    #4. Home page slider: Which slider are you using? If there is a free version I could check this closer.

    #5. Hustle: This isn't copied as the custom table it creates is network wide. I will add a feature for this.

    To sum up, for 1 and 2 you can create a staging site and provide admin and ftp access so I could check why these happen on your site.

    For 3 and 5 I'll try add these as new features

    For 4 I would need more info on how to replicate this.

    If you agree to provide admin and ftp access, you can send that privately through our contact form: https://premium.wpmudev.org/contact/#i-have-a-different-question

    Send in:Subject: "Attn: Panos Lyrakis"

    - Admin login:
    Admin username
    Admin password
    Login url

    - FTP credentials
    host
    username
    password
    (and port if required)

    - link back to this thread for reference

    Thanks!

  • Panos

    Hi Pierre ,

    I have attached a beta version which should take care of the url in links and images issue not being changed and the issue where it doesn't clone Hustle modules.

    For first issue it should be adding a new option in settings where you can activate to replace urls of links or images. For Hustle it should be cloning them silently after CPTs cloen has finished, so it requires the CPTs option to be checked.

    Please let us know how this works for you :slight_smile: I would strongly suggest to first try on a staging/test site before installing on your live site.

    Thanks!

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