Migrating from Google Reader to Fever

The perfidious vandals at Google will kill Google Reader on July 1, 2013. Accordingly, it is time to wean ourselves off Google dependence and find an alternative. Perhaps this will prove to be a good thing, as Google Reader has strangled RSS innovation through its monopolist, good-enough position much like IE6 once strangled the web.

NewsBlur and The Old Reader are two services I’ve seen mentioned. Unfortunately, both are currently buckling under the load of my fellow reader-heads fleeing the sinking Google ship. (Edit: More alternatives are listed in the roundups at Kikolani and LifeHacker.)

Accordingly, I’ve just installed Fever on my shared hosting. I’m not going to recommend my hosting provider as my account is based on a grandfathered plan, but Dreamhost is popular. The more technically inclined may want to spin up an Amazon EC2 instance.

Fever is a PHP/MySQL web application. It’s very easy to install, assuming you have access to a web server. It costs a one-time $30, which is likely why it is very easy to install. It also comes with lots of really neat features that innovate beyond what Google Reader ever did, none of which I care about.

Migrate from Google Reader to Fever

  1. Log into Google Takeout.
  2. Download your Google Reader data.
  3. Unzip it. The subscriptions.xml file contains your feeds and folders in standard OPML format.
  4. Download the Fever Server Compatibility Suite
  5. Upload it to your server and let it verify compatibility.
  6. Is it compatible? Great! Paypal over the $30.
  7. Copy the activation code from the email in your inbox into the wizard.
  8. Let the wizard install Fever for you, importing your precious subscriptions.xml.
  9. Fever will display a brisk progress bar as it quickly processes your myriad feeds.
  10. Oh, you may want to enable the unread messages count:
Enable unread messages count


My fever feeds

8 thoughts on “Migrating from Google Reader to Fever

  1. How’d you get the kindling list to appear like that? On mine the feed list pops out in a new widget between the menu and the content, making things cramped and wasting a lot of space


      1. Ah sweet, and also, you have your feeds nicely organised into groups, which show up under the kindling entry. I’ve started working mine into groups too,

        but I’d love to be able to move the elements around the page a bit, a lot of wasted space still.


    1. The Google Reader keyboard shortcuts work, so Ctrl+A marks all as read. So far I’ve also used j and k (which have additional behaviour on whether you have a post selected or the navbar).

      There’s more info on Fever’s keyboard shortcuts under Gear icon > Keyboard Shortcuts.


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