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Your Migration to the Cloud: What to Expect

During the 2018 summer and fall quarters, the Stanford Sites Cloud Migration team — consisting of Stanford Web Services (SWS) and University IT’s (UIT’s) Administrative Systems  teams — will move approximately 2,400 Stanford Sites websites to the cloud.

The Stanford Sites Cloud Migration Team will move group and department websites first, followed by individual faculty, student and staff websites. Websites using the Stanford Sites Jumpstart service and those custom-built by Stanford Web Services will be migrated in the final phase.

Owners of one or more Stanford Sites websites for group or departments will begin receiving emails in October confirming that website(s) will be migrated. If you’re not the website owner, but manage one or more websites and would like to find out about the migration plan, please contact us.

Individuals managing their personal website on Stanford Sites will begin receiving notification on a migration date later in the summer.

Why is this happening?

We are committed to ensuring your Stanford Sites website is easy to use, performs well, and is readily available when you need it. Moving websites into the cloud offers a better experience both for you as the website owner, and for website visitors. This includes faster loading time, integration with Stanford IAM (Identity and Access Management) infrastructure (SAML 2.0), and on-demand scalability and availability. Learn about the benefits of moving to the cloud.

How does it affect you?


Your content will remain the same, and you will not lose any permissions.


Your URL may change slightly as part of the migration, but redirects will be set up so any visitor who types in the old URL will be redirected to the new one.

For example:

Editing during the migration

During the migration of your website — which is expected to take about one day on a weekend — you will not be able to make any changes or edits to your site. You will receive email reminders so you and other website editors can plan accordingly.

How does it affect visitors to your site?

Visitors that come to your website during the migration will not experience any noticeable change. They will still be able to view your website and will not experience any service disruptions.

However, transactions made by visitors to the website (e.g., web form submission or other data entry) during the brief period during which the site is moving will be captured in your old website, but not in your new website in the cloud. In the unlikely event this happens to you, or if you would like more details about this situation, please submit a Help ticket, and UIT will help.

Steps to take before your website is migrated

First, you will receive an email confirming the website(s) that will be migrated and when. You’ll also receive reminder emails one week prior and on the day before the migration. Before your website is migrated, please take the following actions:

  • Inform website editors/contributors about the migration. Let them know that the website will be unavailable for editing on the specified date, so they can plan accordingly.

  • If a website is no longer in use, we don’t need to move it to the cloud. To delete the website and opt out of the migration altogether, complete this form.

  • To transfer ownership of a website, please submit a Help ticket.

  • If any of your websites contain High Risk Data, or you do not want them to be in a shared hosting environment for any other reason, please submit a Help ticket.

If you do not take any action, we will proceed with migrating your website to the cloud.

During and after migration

It is important to avoid making any edits or changes to your website during the migration. Any changes made during this time will be lost.

We will make several efforts to make this process as seamless as possible for you:

  • You will receive an email one week before — and on the day before — the migration, as a reminder to hold off on making website edits. If edits are made by mistake during the migration, please let us know so we can resolve this issue as soon as possible.

  • Migration is expected to be completed in one day (will occur on a weekend day).

  • While we do not anticipate any issues to arise due to the cloud migration, we will retain a backup copy of the websites offline as a precautionary measure.

  • We will email you when your website is officially in the cloud, and you will then be able to return to making edits.

What about development websites?

If you have a development environment of your Stanford Sites website, it will be retired one week after your production website migrates to the cloud. If you're not sure if you have a development website, please let us know.

Rather just delete your site?

If you’re not using your website, we don’t need to move it to the cloud. To delete your website and opt out of the migration altogether, complete this form.


If you have questions or feedback about the Stanford Sites cloud migration, please let us know.

Last modified September 20, 2018