I need to export some CT order/customer data from a live site to a staging site (updated EE and add-ons), is there a reliable way to do this?

Live site running EE v2.9.3 and CT v2.70 Staging site running EE v2.11.3 and CT v2.71

Import/Export of EE data seems to be generally a bit of pain from what I have read elsewhere.

2 Answers 2


For a simple EE to EE migration (within v.2 at least) there's no need for Datagrab et al, just export the SQL tables that you want and import into the other database.

  • Thanks James, didn't realise it could be that simple.
    – Wes
    Jan 16, 2017 at 21:02

For data import, I highly recommend using AJW datagrab with CSV data. http://brandnewbox.co.uk/products/details/datagrab

data export is a little bit trickier, but you can setup a template to output to CSV/XML or you can use a plugin like Zenbu Studios Hokoku to setup exports directly from the admin CP (if you use Zenbu).

If you want to setup CSV output and file download via a template you can use a plugin like http header to set the content disposition. Check out the http header plugin here: https://github.com/rsanchez/http_header

While the above plugins and methods work great for nearly all EE data, CT order data works a bit differently - specifically order_items/item_options. Item options are stored in the db as base64 encoded data and must be serialised or unserialized as needed. via php:


you may be able to serialize your data for item_options prior to export and then import it directly, but I have not tried doing so and cannot vouch for an easy way to handle it. However, if you are simply using the basic item_options tags (e.g., size, S M L XL; color: red,green,blue etc.) you may be able to work directly with that data via datagrab. Item_options becomes much more complicated if you are using many custom options.

  • Thanks for the detailed answer, I thought that CT would be the more difficult data to handle.
    – Wes
    Jan 16, 2017 at 21:01

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