Migrating the Blog Part - 1

This is part of a series of posts about how I completed the migration of my blog from Blogger to a self-hosted solution based on AWS S3.

  • Part 1 - Decide on where to host the new blog and which platform I would use (This post)
  • Part 2 - Export all the content out of Blogger and new blog design
  • Part 3 - Import all the content into the new blog
  • Part 4 - Fix up all the content issues
  • Part 5 - Redirect all old content to the new site

Let me first explain why I wanted to move off of Blogger.

  1. When I started out - I was a Windows guy - through and through, and at the time there was a great solution and client that I (and everyone else) used as my de-facto tool for blogging - and that was Windows Live Writer. About 4 years ago Microsoft decided to retire the product. That left a large number of us in limbo - because to be honest the web UI of Blogger sucks - and no-one really wanted to use it.

    So some nice people came along and created OpenLiveWriter, which lessened the blow - but at that time - I started to work with a Mac - and eventually the project kind suffered from a number of issues and eventually kind of died out.

  2. This left me with using the Web interface that was not the best (to say the least). But I slogged it out, and continued with the platform for a good while longer.

  3. My daily activities had morphed over time and I have become more familiar and more comfortable with using git and the developer workflow, which is writing in my IDE of choice (VScode a cross platform tool and is of course completely free).

I finally decided on Hugo, which is a successor to Jekyll. Hugo is a static content generator, which allows me to write the content in Markdown and then Hugo generates HTML for this site.

The last part of the puzzle was where to host the content of the site. There were two options, the first was to use Github Pages - but I wanted to have control and ownership of my content - and not rely on a third party provider. I know that Github is a company that we can trust, it is free and a good part of the world’s statically generated content is hosted on Github, but I had already started down the road with AWS and S3 is (IMHO) probably the biggest host of web content in the world. It is cheap, it scales like crazy and costs mere pennies.

So this was the final list of the stack that I decided upon:

  • Markdown - using VScode
  • Hugo for static content generation
  • AWS S3

Next up in Part #2 is getting the data out of blogger so that I could use it in Hugo.