We encourage you to treat all database content on your dev instance— events, images, even groups and users— as disposable. When testing a new version or building a custom feature, we recommend using up-to-date content from your production site. We’ve made it easy to sync live production content to your dev instance.
In LiveWhale 1.7+, you can use this tool to pull updated content to your dev server from the previous night’s backup.
SFTP into your dev server and lock out editors
Login to your dev site at /livewhale/?login (clicking “Click here if you have upgrade access” to bypass the lockout)
Once logged-in, visit /livewhale/?updates_sync and you should see a page that looks like this:
Read the instructions carefully and click “Sync Content from …” button when you’re ready to proceed.
You’ll be logged out and brought to a status page. This status page will auto-refresh every minute or two until the sync is complete.
After the sync is complete, you can now remove the editor lockout on dev and test the front- and back-end capabilities with your recent content from prod.
It’s possible that, over time, some theming changes might have been made on your production server but not on dev. When testing an upgrade, it’s best if your /_ingredients folder on dev and prod begin in sync.
We’re working on automating this process, but in the meantime, we recommend using SFTP to download the entire _ingredients folder from prod and upload it to dev before you begin testing.
This way, any theming changes you make in the next step on dev you can confidently copy to prod in the final step, without worrying about losing prior work.