Migrating to WoltLab Suite 3

Available data importers

Data Import is supported for the following systems:

  • Burning Board 2.3.x, 3.0.x, 3.1.x, 4.0.x, 4.1.x
  • Burning Board Lite 2.1.x
  • IP.Board 3.4.x, 4.x
  • Kunena 3.0.x
  • MyBB 1.8.x
  • NodeBB 0.x (Redis)
  • phpBB 3.0.x, 3.1.x
  • Simple Machines Forum 2.x
  • vBulletin 3.8.x - 4.2.x, 5.x
  • WordPress 3.7+
  • XenForo 1.2.x - 1.4.x

A detailed list which data can be transferred from the individual systems can be found here.

Preparations & considerations

When switching from another software version or forums software you want usually that the new forum can be reached via the same URL as the old forum. For this purpose, the following procedure is recommended.

  • Copy the old forum into a new subdirectory (eg backup) or rename the existing folder
  • Upload the 3 installation files from WoltLab Suite 3 into the directory where WoltLab Suite should be accessible.

Example 1: So far your forum is reachable directly from your domain, eg woltlab.com.


Connect via FTP to your webspace and create a folder named eg backup. In this folder you now copy all the files and folders of your old forum from the root directory. Now, you can install WoltLab Suite 3 directly into your root Directory.


Example 2: So far your forum could be reached via eg woltlab.com/forum/.


Connect via FTP to your webspace and rename the folder forum into eg backup. Now create a new folder forum and install WoltLab Suite 3 there.


This procedure has the advantage that you neither must redirect your domain or change paths into WoltLab Suite 3 later.

Installing WoltLab Suite 3

Unzip the zip file to your hard drive. You'll get these files:

  • upload/test.php
  • upload/install.php
  • upload/WCFSetup.tar.gz
  • License agreement.txt
  • Lies mich.txt
  • Lizenzbestimmungen.txt
  • Read me.txt

The file "WCFSetup.tar.gz" is also an archive. Never unzip that archive!


Upload the test.php, install.php and WCFSetup.tar.gz into the desired directory on your webspace. Open the test.php in your web browser. If PHP 5.5.4 has successful been found on your web space, please start the Installation.


Please follow the instructions of the installation wizzard. The wizzard checks again if the web space meets the system requirements. If there is something that is not green, then please contact your web host provider if this function can still be changed. The installation can not continued until all requirements are met.


At the next step you will be asked for the installation directory for the CMS and your chosen product (app). By default, the main directory is suggested for the CMS. All other apps are installed in appropriate subfolders.


Please keep your MySQL access data ready for installation. These can be found usually in the customer area of your web host. If you do not find this there, then please contact the customer support of your web host.


Please note that the progress of the installation script can vary from time to time – do not cancel this process too soon. This behavior is completely normal. The duration of the installation depends on many factors such as your Internet bandwidth, the server speed and load as well as the chosen packages.


Now some packages are installed.


Please note that the progress of the installation script can vary from time to time – do not cancel this process too soon. This behavior is completely normal. The duration of the installation depends on many factors such as your Internet bandwidth, the server speed and load as well as the chosen packages.


Next you need to create your administrator account.


You now have the option to install optional packages. With a data transfer from another software, you must select the importer here.

Data Transfer

After successful installation you will find the data import under Administration -> Management -> Data Import.


Database Credentials: Insert here the access data to the source database. The table prefix can be looked up into phpMyAdmin. You can usually find phpMyAdmin in the customer area of your web host.


Path to the installation: The absolute server path to the source forum must be entered here. By default the home directory of the domain is specified. If you have followed our example from above, then you need only add /backup to the path.


Please keep in mind, that the duration of the import process depends on many factors, like quantity of forums, posts and attachments in your old forum system, but also many other factors. Do not abort the procedure too early! In case of large forums it is recommended to import via the command line.


Instructions for this can be found here: CLI Import


After you have finished the data import, you should update the counters under Administration -> Management -> Rebuild Data.