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How to upgrade WordPress to the latest version

Posted In WordPress, Wordpress tips - By Jack on Thursday, September 29th, 2011 With No Comments »

Upgrading WordPress to the latest version is one of those things that most bloggers would rather not have to worry about it. For one thing, it takes time, but more importantly, it can easily be messed up and thereby cause all sorts of havoc.

Recently, WordPress 2.7 was released and the good news is that it may be the last time you ever have to upload a file to your server using FTP again! Why is this so? Well there is a new feature in WordPress 2.7 called Core Update, which will allow you to automatically update your entire WordPress installation via the WordPress admin panel!

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Note that this feature will only work with some web hosting companies, not all. You can see if your hosting company supports this feature by checking out the Core Update Host Compatibility list.

Ok, so if you’re not at 2.7 yet, then how do you upgrade WordPress? Well, there are two ways, using the Automatic Upgrade WordPress plugin or using FTP. I am the conservative type, so all of my upgrades I do manually using FTP because I don’t trust plugins very much.

However, it does work for quite a lot of people and is a popular plugin, so if you want to upgrade WordPress to 2.7 without having to do anything, then check out the Automatic Upgrade plugin here.

In this article, though, I am going to walk you through how to update WordPress using the method I have used for the last 6 to 7 upgrades I’ve had to go through.

How to upgrade WordPress

Step 1: First, download the latest version of WordPress and unzip the package, which will leave you with one folder called “wordpress”.

Step 2: Perform a backup of your WordPress database and WordPress files stored on your hosting server. You can use a free FTP client to download the web server files and usually the control panel for your site to backup the database.

You can also use a WordPress database backup plugin like wp-db-backup.

Step 3: Deactivate all of your WordPress plugins before upgrading the installation.

Step 4: Now that your files are backed up, FTP into your site using a free FTP client like FileZilla or WinSCP.

Step 5: Now this is the important step! Delete the following folders and files:

  • wp-admin folder
  • wp-includes folder (if you have a languages folder inside, do not delete that)
  • wp-*.php (except for wp-config.php)
  • readme.html
  • xmlrpc.php
  • license.txt
  • index.php

Everything else, DO NOT DELETE. That means you do not want to delete the following files and folders:

  • wp-config.php
  • wp-content folder
  • .htaccess file
  • robots.txt

Step 5: Once you have deleted the appropriate files, upload all the files and folders in the wordpress folder that you unzipped EXCEPT for the wp-content folder. Just leave that folder out completely. Upload EVERYTHING else though.

Step 6: Upgrade the database by going to http://example.com/wp-admin/upgrade.php and clicking on Upgrade.

Step 7: Re-activate all of your plugins!

You should now be back in business and hopefully everything loading up fine. Everything is pretty easy except for the deleting part, but once you do it a few times, it’s not as scary as it is the first time.

This may be the hardest way to upgrade a WordPress installation, but it’s also the most reliable. Plugins and “automatic” upgrades don’t work for every host and every WordPress installation out there and can fail in the middle. When that happens, you’re screwed.

It’s better to learn how to manually upgrade WordPress so that you do not have to rely on plugins or someone/something else. Again, the new Core Update feature in WordPress 2.7 looks promising, but I am sure there will be many people for whom it will fail!

If you are trying to upgrade WordPress and are having problems, post your issue here and I’ll try to help you out! Enjoy!

(online-tech-tips.com)

 

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