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Renaming the Magento database table prefix

During the installation of Magento you have the option to use a database prefix for your Magento tables in the database. Using such a database prefix adds to the security of your site, because generic SQL Injection attacks will be more likely to fail. But if you installed Magento using the demo-data or if you forgot about this thing during installation, you are stuck with a database without prefix. Here is the procedure to update your Magento instance with a different prefix.

Renaming all database tables

Renaming database tables could be done manually through a tool like phpMyAdmin, but because a default Magento install counts over 200 tables, this task is better performed by using a PHP-script. Open up a file and add the following PHP-code to it:

{snippet tutorials/magento_rename_table_prefix_1.phps}

Make sure these settings match your own Magento installation. The $database_host is most likely "localhost", but it could be different. Consult your hosting provider for these details, or open up the Magento file app/etc/local.xml which already contains these details.

The settings contain the variable $table_prefix which is set here to "dwz_". The prefix could be changed into something else. We recommend you use only alphabetical characters and end the prefix with an underscore ("_"). These configuration settings are used in the rest of the PHP-script. Add the following PHP-code to the same file:

{snippet tutorials/magento_rename_table_prefix_2.phps}

Save the file to a name like "rename_table_prefix.php" (ending with a ".php" extension) and upload it to your Magento website.

Run the script

Before you run the script you should of course prepare a database backup and a file backup. Also make sure you know how to restore these backups. If you are ready for it, just run the PHP-script by entering the right URL in your browser:

http://MAGENTO/rename_table_prefix.php

This should rename all the database tables to include the new table prefix. If this went ok, remember to delete the PHP-script afterwards.

Modifying the Magento configuration

Now that the database tables are modified, you will also need to modify the Magento configuration. Open up the file app/etc/local.xmland locate the following line:

<table_prefix><![CDATA[]]></table_prefix>

 

Change it to point to the new table prefix:

<table_prefix><![CDATA[dwz_]]></table_prefix>

That's it. It might be that you need to empty out the Magento cache directory (MAGENTO/var/cache) but normally everything should be working right away.

 

 

Written on 4 December 2009 by Jisse Reitsma

About the author

Jisse Reitsma is the founder of Yireo, extension developer, developer trainer and two times Magento Master. His passion is for technology and open source. And he loves talking as well.

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