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Jun 14, 2024 | 3 Minute Read

Powering Migration For The National Law Review With Acquia Migrate Accelerate


Table of Contents


Maintaining a secure and efficient Content Management System (CMS) is crucial for business operations.

The National Law Review (NLR), a distinguished legal news service and law journal, faced significant challenges in migrating its website from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9.

Axelerant's expertise in Acquia Migrate Accelerate (AMA) was instrumental in addressing these challenges and successfully completing the Drupal migration. We ensured a seamless migration with minimal custom scripting.

About The Client: The National Law Review

The National Law Review is an established American law journal and daily legal news website, offering hourly updates and analyses on recent court decisions, regulatory changes, and legislative actions. With a history spanning over 135 years and contributions from more than 400 publishers, NLR is a vital resource for legal professionals and enthusiasts.

The platform combines original content with submissions from experts in the legal and business communities, ensuring comprehensive coverage of legal developments.

The Challenges

The client faced several challenges like:

Outdated Drupal Core And Contributed Modules

During the discovery phase, it was identified that NLR's Drupal core and contributed modules were outdated. This posed potential issues during the migration process and increased security risks. Updating these components was necessary to ensure a smooth transition to Drupal 9.

Data Discrepancies In The Database

The discovery process also revealed several data discrepancies, including missing data, inconsistent data, and duplicate entries. These discrepancies led to issues with data migration, content organization, and search engine optimization (SEO). Resolving these inconsistencies was crucial for a successful migration.

Disabled Modules

The migration process required enabling all relevant core and contributed modules on the Drupal 9 destination site. For instance, the multiselect module was enabled in Drupal 7 but not in Drupal 9. Ensuring all necessary modules were active was essential for executing the migrations accurately.

Previous Migration Delays

NLR had been attempting to migrate its content-rich Drupal 7 website to Drupal 9 for over a year without success. The previous efforts using the Acquia Migrate Accelerate (AMA) tool led to significant delays and additional costs, leaving the migration process incomplete.

Limited Success With Acquia Migrate Accelerate

Despite several attempts to carry out the migration independently, the NLR team completed only about 80% of the process. They encountered numerous challenges, primarily due to data inconsistencies within the legacy database, which impeded the migration's progress.

Debugging And Patching Issues

A major hurdle was the inability to debug or patch the AMA tool effectively, creating a roadblock in completing the migration process. This technical limitation, coupled with a tight two-month timeline, added to the project's complexity.

The Solutions

Axelerant’s Drupal experts helped solve the above-mentioned challenges by:

Identifying The Problem Areas

Axelerant began by thoroughly exploring the capabilities of Acquia Migrate Accelerate and conducting a full-spectrum analysis to identify the root cause of the migration issues. The investigation revealed significant data inconsistencies within the legacy database that needed to be addressed.

Updating Drupal Core And Modules

To mitigate potential issues and security risks, Axelerant recommended and facilitated the update of NLR's Drupal core and contributed modules before proceeding with the migration.

Resolving Data Discrepancies

Axelerant addressed the data discrepancies by cleaning the database, removing duplicate entries, and ensuring data consistency. This step was crucial for a seamless migration and better content organization.

Enabling Necessary Modules

Axelerant ensured that all necessary core and contributed modules were enabled on the Drupal 9 destination site. This included activating the multiselect module, which was critical for a complete and accurate migration.

Choosing the Right Implementation Path

Two potential solutions were considered:

  • Resolve the underlying data issues and continue using AMA.
  • Develop a custom migration strategy for the remaining data.

After a rigorous assessment, Axelerant opted for the first solution. By addressing the data inconsistencies, the team paved the way for a smooth migration process.

Efficiently Utilizing Acquia Migrate Accelerate

Axelerant's deep dive into AMA documentation and database troubleshooting allowed the team to overcome the technical challenges. This meticulous approach enabled the identification and resolution of the critical issue, ensuring the migration process could proceed without further obstacles.

Customized Consulting

Our consultation focused not only on implementation but also on problem identification. We customized our solutions to resolve the identified inconsistencies within the legacy database, thus ensuring a seamless migration to Drupal 9.

The Results

Axelerant’s Digital Experience Platform experts were able to help the client achieve:

Successful Migration To Drupal 9

Axelerant successfully completed the migration with minimal reliance on custom scripts, resulting in a secure and up-to-date platform for the National Law Review. This transition provided enhanced security and a more reliable content management system.

Reduced Publishing Time

Post-migration, the content publishing time was significantly reduced from a few weeks to just a few days. This efficiency gain allowed NLR to keep their content relevant and timely, benefiting their readership.

Quick Turnaround Time

Despite the initial delays, Axelerant managed to complete the project within the desired two and a half months. This quick turnaround not only saved time but also reduced the additional costs incurred due to the prolonged migration.

Enhanced Security And Reliability

The migration to Drupal 9 offered improved security and reliability for NLR's website, ensuring a robust platform for their extensive content and future growth.

Axelerant's expertise and commitment helped the National Law Review overcome challenges, resulting in a successful and efficient website migration. This project stands as a testament to the effectiveness of Acquia Migrate Accelerate when leveraged correctly and the value of a meticulous, problem-solving approach in digital transformations.

Axelerant Can Help You Migrate To The Right CMS

Whether you're looking to migrate your platform to Drupal or other CMS platforms, Axelerant can help. Our experienced team ensures smooth transitions with minimal disruption, enhancing security and efficiency.

Speak to us to learn more.



About the Author
Prateek Jain, Director, Digital Experience Services
About the Author

Prateek Jain, Director, Digital Experience Services

Offline, if he's not spending time with his daughter he's either on the field playing cricket or in a chair with a good book.

Abhishek Dhariwal

Abhishek Dhariwal, Senior DXP Consultant

Abhishek is a true explorer—whether it’s different cuisines, places, or subjects, he enjoys it all. He reads at least two newspapers daily, values attention to detail, and prioritizes thoughtful solutions over quick fixes. Away from work, you can find this technophile enjoying TV Series.

Simran Sethi

Simran Sethi, Marketing Associate

Simran is an avid reader. She is an active runner, who also likes to swim, dance, and sing. For her, the meaning of life lies in the little things. Kindness, passion, and compassion are her life’s essential values.

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