Page tree
This documentation is for cPanel & WHM version 84 CURRENT builds.  The "RELEASE" version of our documentation can be found in the Version 82 Documentation space.

Skip to end of metadata
Go to start of metadata

(WHM >> Home >> Transfers >> Transfer Tool)


This interface copies multiple accounts from a remote server to your cPanel & WHM server. To transfer accounts, you must obtain the following:

  • SSH access to the remote server.
  • root-level privileges with the su or sudo commands.


  • Do not shut down or restart any processes on either server during the transfer and restoration process.
  • Do not start a transfer during a system update (upcp) or start a system update during a transfer. The system update will fail.
  • Transfers to a server configured in the same DNS cluster overwrite that domain's existing zone files. The system replaces these files with the transferred server's zone files when the following conditions are true:
    • The destination server resides in the same cluster.
    • The DNS role uses the Synchronized Changes option.
  • For more information about DNS clusters, read our DNS Cluster documentation.
  • The Transfer Tool feature does not transfer the Domain Name System (DNS) zone templates. If custom DNS zone templates exist on the remote server, the system ignores these zone templates when it recreates the account on the destination server. For more information, read the transfer process section below.
  • You must remove Domain Server (DS) records from the domain registrar before you transfer a domain that uses DNSSEC. After you transfer the domain, you need to re-add the DS records to the registrar for the domain. For more information about the process, read the DNSSEC key transfer section of our DNSSEC documentation.
  • Account transfers process AAAA records differently than A records.

    • The target server will not alter AAAA records that point to servers other than the source server or servers related to the source.
    • A target server without IPv6 enabled will strip locally-managed AAAA records that pointed to the source server.
    • A target server with IPv6 enabled will point any source-related AAAA record to the account's shared IPv6 address in the domain's locally-managed zone file.
  • In cPanel & WHM version 70 and later, the server disregards the Restrict document roots to public_html Tweak Setting option during server transfers. The transfer tool retains any pre-transfer public_html/ directory structures, even those that place addon and subdomains document roots outside of the primary website's document root. However, after the transfer, addon and subdomains that the restored user creates will adhere to this setting.

  • Do not use the skip-name-resolve option in your server's MySQL® configuration. This option can cause problems on any server. It will create more problems on remote MySQL servers during account transfers.
  • The source and target servers must be able to communicate over port 2087 to use this feature. They must also be able to communicate over the port that your servers use for SSH connections. For more information about the ports that cPanel & WHM uses, read our How to Configure Your Firewall for cPanel Services documentation.


  • If you experience problems with session timeouts, increase the number of seconds in the Number of seconds an SSH connection related to an account transfer may be inactive before timing out setting in the System section of WHM's Tweak Settings interface (WHM >> Home >> Server Configuration >> Tweak Settings).
  • If one of the accounts that you wish to transfer uses Microsoft® FrontPage® on the remote server, we strongly recommend that you disable FrontPage for that account before you attempt to transfer the account. cPanel & WHM versions 11.46 and later do not support FrontPage, and the restoration process does not restore FrontPage-specific files and directories.

Important notes about account transfers from Plesk

The system will not transfer any email addresses from Plesk to cPanel & WHM that contain a plus sign (+) in the email username. The system will also not transfer any FTP accounts that contain an underscore (_) in the username.

To transfer accounts from Plesk, first change any forwarded domains to physical hosting accounts. To do this, run the following command as the root user:

/usr/local/psa/bin/domain --update -hst_type phys -login "example" -hosting true -ip -passwd "12345luggage"
  • represents the forwarding domain.
  • example represents the new account's username.
  • represents the new account's IP address.
  • 12345luggage represents the new account's password.

If you need to convert several forwarding domains into hosting accounts, open a support ticket and our migration team will contact you.

IP address transfers

To transfer IP addresses from one server to another, use WHM's IP Migration Wizard interface (WHM >> Home >> IP Function >> IP Migration Wizard).

If the IP address is the server's main IP address, you must also update your cPanel license's IP address. You can update your license's IP address through Manage2, if you use it, or through the cPanel Store.


You can only transfer a cPanel license to an IP address that does not already possess a cPanel license.

Transfer via Manage2

If you purchased your license via Manage2, perform the steps in our Transfer a license documentation.

Transfer via cPanel Store

If you purchased your license directly from cPanel, L.L.C., perform the following steps:

  1. Log in to your cPanel Store account.
  2. Click My Account. The My Account interface will appear.
  3. Under Orders/Licenses, click View my licenses. The Manage Licenses interface will appear.
  4. Select the checkbox for the license that you wish to transfer.

  5. Click Edit IP. The Change IP Address dialogue box will appear.

  6. Enter the license's new IP address in the New IP Address text box.

  7. Click Save Changes.

If you experience any issues with the transfer, open a support ticket.

How to transfer and restore multiple accounts

Remote server information

This section of the Transfer Tool interface allows you to specify information about the remote server (the server from which to transfer accounts).

  1. In the Remote Server Address text box, enter an IP address or a Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN).
    • IP address example127.0.0.1
    • FQDN example


      In this case, the FQDN does not require the trailing dot.

  2. In the Remote SSH port text box, specify the port to use.


    The default value for SSH is port 22.


In this section of the Transfer Tool interface, specify the authentication method with which to log in to the remote server.

To specify an authentication method, perform the following steps:

  1. Select whether to log in as the root user or with a specific username.


    If the PermitRootLogin value equals no in the sshd_config file on the remote server, you must log in as a user other than the root user and then escalate to the root user.

  2. If you selected User for Login, perform the following actions:
    • Enter the remote account's username in the Username text box.
    • Enter the remote account's password in the Password text box.
  3. Use the Authentication Method menu to specify whether to use a password or an SSH public key to authenticate to the remote server.
    • If you select Password, enter the password for the account in the Password text box.
    • If you select SSH Public Key, select the key to use during authentication. Make certain that you installed the appropriate key in WHM's Manage root's SSH Keys interface (WHM >> Home >> Security >> Manage root's SSH Keys).


      If you encrypted your account's SSH public key, enter the SSH Key Passphrase.

  4. If you select User under Login, select a root escalation method under the Root Escalation Method heading.
    • If you select su for the Root Escalation Method, enter the root password in the Root Password text box.


In this section of the Transfer Tool interface, select whether to use the Restricted Restore feature or copy reseller privileges.


The Restricted Restore feature performs additional security checks on the backup file in order to mitigate the risk of transfers from unfamiliar sources. An issue may exist with a component of the backup file (for example, a compromised MySQL grant table or a symbolic link attack). If such an issue exists, the system will not restore that portion of the backup and will add a warning to the log file.

  • The Restricted Restore feature is Experimental. Do not consider it an effective security control at this time. The behavior of this feature may change in a future release of cPanel & WHM. Exercise extreme caution when you use this feature.
  • If you do not trust the source of the account backup with root access to your server, use the Restricted Restore feature to protect your server.
  • If you wish to use the Restricted Restore feature to restore an account that owns PostgreSQL® databases, the target server must use PostgreSQL version 8.4 or newer.
  • The Restricted Restore feature only allows restored accounts to use noshell or jailshell. If the restored account uses another shell, the system sets the account to use noshell. For more information, read our VirtFS (Jailed Shell) documentation.


This section of the Transfer Tool interface provides advanced options for the transfer. Click Show to display the list of options.

To select the advanced options, perform the following steps:

  1. From the Remote Server Type menu, select the web control panel that the remote server runs. Choose from the following options:
    • Auto Detect
    • cPanel & WHM
    • DirectAdmin
    • Ensim (Parallels Pro)
    • Plesk
  2. Select Unencrypted to use an unencrypted session to transfer the files.

  3. Select Compressed Transfers to compress the files during the rsync process when the remote server transfers the files between the remote and destination servers.


    This option does not affect the package account function, which creates a gzip archive of the user's account on the remote server.

  4. Select Low Priority to use less CPU and input/output (I/O) on the remote server.


    This option reduces the impact on performance on the remote server, but increases the duration of the transfer session.

  5. Select Use Incremental Backups speed-up to decrease the amount of time that the system uses to package the account on the remote server. If a daily incremental backup exists, WHM uses that backup as a starting point. The system then updates the package before transfer.

  6. Select Use custom account packaging modules from /var/cpanel/lib/Whostmgr/Pkgacct to use packaging scripts in that directory.


    The system does not create the /var/cpanel/lib/Whostmgr/Pkgacct directory by default. You must create the /var/cpanel/lib/Whostmgr/Pkgacct directory before you select this option, if the directory does not already exist.


    cPanel & WHM always prioritizes custom restore modules in the /var/cpanel/perl/Whostmgr/Transfers/Systems directory over the cPanel-provided modules in the /usr/local/cpanel/Whostmgr/Transfers/Systems directory.

    • The /var/cpanel/perl/Whostmgr/Transfers/Systems directory stores any custom modules that you create.
    • The /usr/local/cpanel/Whostmgr/Transfers/Systems directory stores the modules that ship with cPanel & WHM.
  7. Specify the number of CPU processes (threads) for the transfer session in the Number of Transfer Threads text box.


    The system allows you to specify a maximum of five transfer threads.

  8. Specify the number of CPU processes (threads) for the restore session in the Number of Restore Threads text box.


    The system allows you to specify a maximum of five transfer threads.

  9. Enter the number of seconds that the transfer session remains open before it times out in the Transfer Session Timeout text box.


    If you change the default in the Transfer Session Timeout text box, it will only apply to the current session. You must enter a new value each time that you run a transfer. You can permanently change the value in WHM's Tweak Settings interface (WHM >> Home >> Server Configuration >> Tweak Settings).

  10. After you make your selections, click Scan Remote Server. A new interface will appear.

The Account List interface

The top of the Account List interface displays the hosting software and version of the remote server. If any of this information appears incorrect, click Reanalyze Remote Server.

Below the remote server information, the interface displays if any available IP addresses exist.


If no available IP addresses exist on the target server, accounts on the remote server that use a dedicated IP address will not transfer.

Service Configurations

In this section of the Account List interface, select the configuration settings on the remote server that you wish to copy to a destination server. You can transfer the following configurations:

  • AutoSSL


    This module does not modify the SSL Provider. To update your SSL provider, use WHM's Manage AutoSSL interface (WHM >> Home >> SSL/TLS >> Manage AutoSSL). 

  • Backups
  • cPanel & WHM (whmconf)
  • Database Server


    When you transfer remote MySQL databases, the Transfer Tool feature includes any comments associated with the remote MySQL server. For more information about remote MySQL comments, read our Remote MySQL documentation.

  • EasyApache
  • Exim
  • GreyList
  • Hulk


    • The Transfer Tool feature does not copy history reports.
    • The Transfer Tool feature appends whitelist- and blacklist-management configuration settings. It does not replace these configuration settings.
  • ModSecurity™


    The EasyApache service configuration also contains some ModSecurity settings. Use the ModSecurity service configuration to affect only the ModSecurity settings.

  • User Interface Themes

For more information about the files that the system transfers for each configuration, read our The cpconftool Script documentation.

To select your desired configurations, perform the following steps:

  1. Click Show next to Service Configurations to reveal all of the available configurations on your server. The Configuration Name and Analysis columns display the available configurations and versions.
  2. Select the configurations that you wish to transfer to your local server.


    • The system displays warning messages in yellow and blocker messages in red text.
    • If you receive a blocker message, the system disables the EasyApache option.

  3. Click Copy. The system will display the progress interface.


    • You cannot click Copy until you select a configuration to transfer.
    • The Transfer column displays the status of all configurations from the remote server.
    • The Restore column displays the status of all configurations to the destination server.
    • The system displays any error messages in yellow and warning messages in red text.

    The summary bar displays the transferred or restored configurations.

Restore the PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file

A MultiPHP user's PHP-FPM setting does not transfer. The system transfers the PHP-FPM .yaml configurations, but will not place it in position due to the undetermined status of PHP and FPM services. Instead, the system copies the PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file to the filename.php-fpm.transferred file.

To restore the PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file manually, perform the following steps:

  1. Rename the file to the filename.php-fpm.yaml file.
  2. Run the following command:

    /scripts/php_fpm_config --rebuild

     The system restores your account's PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file.

CentOS, Red Hat®, and CloudLinux 5 Migrations


On March 31, 2017, Red Hat® deprecated all CentOS 5 systems. cPanel, L.L.C. no longer provides maintenance and security updates for CentOS 5 systems. The Transfer Tool interface can assist you in your migration from CentOS 5 systems to a higher version of CentOS. We strongly recommend that you migrate to a CentOS 7 server.

To migrate your CentOS 5 server to a CentOS 7 server, perform the following steps:

  1. Contact your hosting provider and acquire a CentOS 7 server to which to migrate. 
  2. Log in to WHM as the root user and navigate to the Transfer Tool interface.
  3. Perform the steps in the Configuration section above.


    We strongly recommend that you migrate your accounts and configurations separately. Migrate your configurations first.

  4. Verify that your server operates as expected. For more information about one method to do this, read our Service Manager documentation.

  5. Use the Transfer Tool interface to migrate the desired accounts.


In this section of the Account List interface, select the packages on the remote server to copy to your local server.

How to copy packages


The Transfer Tool feature transfers features lists for the packages that you select.

To copy a package, perform the following steps:

  1. Select the packages to copy in the table under the Packages heading.
    • Select the checkbox in the table header to select all of the packages from the remote server.
    • Use the Search text box to filter the list of packages.
    • Use the navigation controls to page through the list of packages.
    • Click a column header to sort the packages by that column.
  2. Click Copy.


  • The restore system attempts to extract the package information from the cpmove file. If the package does not already exist on the target system, the system creates the package and assigns it to the account. If the system cannot create the package, the system assigns the default package to the account.
  • If the feature list for the account exists on the target system, the system assigns it to the account. If the feature list does not exist, the system assigns the default feature list to the account.
  • You can transfer a new package and feature list with the same name as a package that already exists on the target server. This package will override the previous package's settings.


In this section of the Account List interface, search for and select accounts to transfer to your local server.

How to copy accounts


To toggle an option for all accounts, select the checkbox at the top of the appropriate column in the table header.

To copy accounts, perform the following steps:

  1. Select the accounts to copy in the table under the Accounts heading.
    • To copy all of the accounts on the remote server, select the checkbox at the top of the column in the table header.
    • Use the Search text box to filter the list of accounts.
    • Use the navigation controls to page through the list of packages.
    • Click a column header to sort the accounts by that column.
  2. Specify the copied account's new username and enter the new username in the User text box.


    The User text boxes use the following colors as warning indicators:

    • Red indicates that the username exists on this server, and the account will fail to copy if you do not change the username or select Overwrite.
    • Yellow indicates that the account has a dedicated IP address on the remote server. 
    • Green indicates that the account does not already exist.
  3. Select the accounts to which the system will assign dedicated IP addresses under the Dedicated IP Address heading.


    The interface does not allow you to assign more dedicated IP addresses than the number of available IP addresses on your server. If you select an account with a dedicated IP address on the remote server but an available IP address does not exist on your server, the transfer fails.
  4. Select the accounts that will transfer their home directories under the Copy Home Directory heading.
    • Use the Filter text box to filter the list of accounts by the Domain, User, or Reseller columns.


      Accounts will retain their mailbox format settings from the remote server. For example, if an account uses maildir format on the remote server, it will use maildir format on the target server.


      Some system administrators use alternative methods to transfer home directories, such as the rsync command. If you do not select the Copy Home Directory option, the system will not add the necessary SNI information to Dovecot's configuration files.

      To manually configure SNI information in Dovecot's configuration files after an alternative transfer of home directories, run the following command:

      /scripts/build_mail_sni --rebuild_dovecot_sni_conf --restartsrvs
  5. Select the accounts that will retain their reseller privileges under the Copy Reseller Privileges heading.


    This option does not appear if you selected the Restricted Restore feature in the Security section of the previous interface.

  6. Select the accounts that will transfer their account databases under the Copy Databases heading.
  7. Select the accounts that will transfer their bandwidth data under the Copy Bandwidth Data heading.


    If you transfer an account from cPanel & WHM version 11.50 to an earlier version, the account loses its bandwidth data.

  8. Select accounts for express transfer under the Express transfer heading.


    For more information, read the Express transfer section below.

  9. If an account exists on the server, the Overwrite Account column displays a checkbox that allows you to transfer the account and overwrite all the data in the account.
  10. Click Copy.

After you click Copy, the Account Transfer interface will appear.

The transfer process


  • In the following steps, domain represents the name of a domain that you transferred. 
  • The system considers any two records with the same resource name and type to be duplicates.
  • MultiPHP user's PHP-FPM settings do not transfer. The system transfers the PHP-FPM .yaml configurations, but will not place it in position due to the undetermined status of PHP and FPM services. Instead, the system copies the PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file to the filename.php-fpm.transferred file. To restore this file manually, read the Restore the PHP-FPM .yaml configuration file section above.

When you use the Transfer Tool interface to transfer accounts, the system performs the following actions:

  1. The system creates the account.
  2. The system compares the DNS zone file from the account's backup file with the template-generated zone file that the system generated during account creation.

  3. The system updates the SOA record to match the target server's zone templates and comments out the existing SOA record from the remote server.
  4. The system updates domain NS records to match the target server's zone templates and comments out any duplicate domain NS records from the remote server.
  5. The system updates ftp.domain A, AAAA, and CNAME records to match the target server's DNS templates and comments out any identical ftp.domain records from the remote server.


    cPanel & WHM uses the IP address in the destination server's virtual-ftp zone template (usually, the server's main IP address) for virtual FTP when the account exists on a shared IP address.

  6. The system checks whether the template-generated zone file uses an MX preference of 0, and then performs the following actions:

    • If the zone file's MX preference is 0 and the zone file is  $PRIMARY_DOMAIN  or  mail.$PRIMARY_DOMAIN , the system does not merge in the generated templates and does not update the MX preference from the remote server.

    • If the zone file's MX preference is 0 and the zone file is not $PRIMARY_DOMAIN or mail.$PRIMARY_DOMAIN (a non-standard mail configuration), the system merges the generated templates and comments out templates from the remote server.
    • For example, when the zone template's MX record defines an external mail service, the system prefers that entry over the record in the backup.

  7. The system comments out duplicate records.

  8. The system comments out CNAME records that conflict with any other records. If two or more CNAME records conflict, the system comments out all but the first CNAME record.
  9. The system increments the SOA serial number for the domain.
  10. The system updates records that reference the old IP address to use the account's new IP address.
  11. The system removes comments that are older than 30 days.
  12. The system updates CalDAV and CardDAV records to match the target server's DNS template.
  13. The system transfers any DNSSEC key information from the backup file to the new server.


    If the destination server does not support DNSSEC, that system will not restore any DNSSEC keys in the backup file.

  14. If the zone file contains an $ORIGIN directive for an additional domain, the system will not update that additional domain's records.

Express transfers


  • You can only use the Express transfers feature to transfer accounts between cPanel & WHM servers.
  • Only use the Express transfers feature if the remote server controls the authoritative name servers for the domain. If the remote server does not control the authoritative nameservers for the domain and you use this feature, DNS will not resolve. This will cause your sites to experience downtime.

An express transfer moves the specified cPanel account or accounts to a new server, and performs the following actions on the source server:

  1. Updates the account's A record to point to the destination server.
  2. Changes the domain's nameserver entry to point to the destination server.
  3. Updates the email routing configuration's MX records, so that mail arrives at the destination server.
  4. Adds a redirect for the Account Moved page (cgi-sys/movingpage.cgi) for the following file extensions:

  5. Suspends the transferred accounts on the remote server. For more information, read our What Happens When You Suspend an Account documentation.

The system performs changes on the remote server in the /usr/local/cpanel/scripts/xferpoint directory.


If you do not want to use this feature, you can use The swapip Script to update the transferred accounts' nameserver records.

Additional documentation