Staging on Flywheel is a powerful and versatile tool, but it has so many capabilities that it can be difficult to know how best to use it, and what it should (and shouldn’t) be used for. Never fear! We’re happy to help.
The main consideration when using Staging boils down to one simple question: is the live site being edited or updated while the Staging site is in development, or will it be waiting unchanged until you’re ready to push your Staging changes to the live site?
The answer to that question will determine the best use of staging for you, because when you push Staging changes to the live site, you’ll have the option of whether to overwrite the live database with the Staging database, or to leave the live database as-is and instead only push file changes from Staging.
Because those are the two options, here’s a guide to our recommendations for Staging:
If that all seems like a lot, just remember: Staging is designed to create a duplicate of the live site, then allow changes to be pushed back to the live site later. Staging can overwrite the live database or leave it alone and only push files, but it can’t merge changes to both the Staging and the live site’s database. So if you’re changing both at the same time, you risk losing some data.
If you’d like to know more about what is and what is not stored in a WordPress site’s database, be sure to check out this help article on how to push Staging changes to the live site.
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