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Machine configurations and Staging server Considerations

When creating a staging server, you can copy the product and store data from the production database to the staging database, and then propagate updates back to the production database. Similarly, you can copy stored Web pages and macros from the production site to the staging site and copy updates back to the production site. Thus, updates can be fully tested before being released to the public.
Note that customer and order information is not copied to the staging server, thereby reducing the chance that this critical information will be stolen, lost, or corrupted. Finally, your staging server probably does not need to include a payment gateway.