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Call me the upgrade freak as I always have to have the latest versions of everything. But there was one exception: the WordPress installation on my blogs. The reason was that upgrading WordPress was not a walk in the park.

If it’s just about downloading the latest version, then there wouldn’t be any problem. Unfortunately, the process also involves backing-up the database 4 Free Tools for Fool-Proof Wordpress Backup 4 Free Tools for Fool-Proof Wordpress Backup Read More , deactivating the plugins, uploading the latest installation files (which could be a hellish experience, especially on an unstable and slow internet connection), upgrading the database, reactivating the plugins, and upgrading the plugins (if needed). Add to that the possibilities of crushing your blog entirely and you have the perfect combination of reasons not to try to upgrade.

So when the latest version – 2.6 – of WordPress was released, my fingers started to tickle again. I was tempted. Still, I was not 100% sure if I was up to the task of upgrading. But then I came across a very useful plugin called: WordPress Automatic Upgrade.

As the name suggest, this plugin:

    -Backs up the files and makes available a link to download it.
    -Backs up the database and makes available a link to download it.
    -Downloads the latest files and unzips them.
    -Puts the site in maintenance mode.
    -De-activates all active plugins and remembers them.
    -Upgrades WordPress files.
    -Gives you a link that will open in a new window to upgrade your installation.
    -Re-activates the plugins.

The plugin can also can be run in the automatic mode where you only have to click on one button and let it do the rest. Sweet!

To be able to use this plugin, you’ll need to install it first. If you’ve read and followed the tips in my previous article about WordPress The First Wordpress Plugins You Must Install The First Wordpress Plugins You Must Install Read More , you can do the installation easily from within your WordPress admin panel. All you need is the file download link.

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Otherwise, you can:

    – download the file,
    – unzip it,
    – then using an FTP application, throw everything inside that archive to folder “/wp-content/plugins/” of your WordPress installation location.
    – go to your “Plugin” tab within your Admin panel and click “activate”.

A quick note before you upgrade, you need to have permission to write the files and folders within your WordPress installation. If you don’t have that permission, at least you must know the details for the FTP account. Please ask the admin of your server regarding this information.

If everything is set, you can begin the upgrading process. There are two options:

    1. Using the step by step process will ensure a successful installation. Just follow the step by step “Click Here” instructions, and everything should be fine.

    2. Using the automatic process will free you from the hassles as everything is only one click away, but this option doesn’t always work. It depends on your authority status and the Chmod setting of your WordPress files and folders.

My suggestion is to go with the automatic mode first. Then if this has failed, you can switch to the manual step by step process.

Congratulations, now your WordPress is up to date – and will always be, easily. Personally, I think the 2.6 version is more comfortable to use. But there is more to upgrading than just to feel more comfortable.

The main reason is security. You will know yourself that the world is full of people who have nothing better to do than to find the loopholes of any application and exploit those holes (or maybe they are paid to do so). Therefore, developers have to continuously provide patches while improving product features. So that’s exactly another reason to keep up with the latest version: more goodies to enjoy!

  1. theheatweb
    October 27, 2009 at 5:47 am

    really nice! I followed your steps and I updated my blog so easily!

  2. Allen T.
    August 30, 2009 at 6:45 pm

    I really like this blog good job.

  3. Nina Wegner
    February 13, 2009 at 6:28 pm

    my God, i thought you were going to chip in with some decisive insght at the end there, not leave it with ‘we leave it to you to decide’.

  4. Yashni Marad
    February 13, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    A SUPPORTED BY THE DEVELOPER TOOLS? It was interesting. You seem very knowledgeable in ypour field.

  5. Reuben Stugart
    August 3, 2008 at 9:59 am

    So I have used this plugin and gone alll the way through it and now I am receiving this whenever I try to login:

    Error 500 - Internal server error

    An internal server error has occured!
    Please try again later.

    Please help, don't know what to do.

    • Jeffry Thurana
      August 5, 2008 at 1:46 am

      Sorry for the late reply.

      Have you resolve the problem? Maybe it's because the process was stopped half-way (usually happened when there's a lag in the net connection). If this is the case, like it or not you have to re-upgrade the WP installation manually. Just replace everything in your WP directory except for the wp-content folder and wp-config.php file, then go to location-of-your-wordpress/wp-admin/upgrade.php and upgrade the database (takse only two clicks).

      Everything sould be fine then. Good luck.

  6. Blake
    August 2, 2008 at 3:15 am

    Thanks! I tried this out, but couldn't get past the "put the site in maintenance mode" step. It kept giving me errors there. I'll try out the CHMOD settings, but any suggestions?

  7. Mackenzie
    August 1, 2008 at 7:12 pm

    Be *extremely* careful with this. Check it afterward. My friend's blog was pwned after using the automatic updater because even though it asks for your FTP user/pass, it for some reason goes about and does a chmod 777 on every directory. Yes, world-writable. Fantastic.

    • Aibek
      August 2, 2008 at 4:38 am

      I second Mackenzie, while this can save yu lots of time make sure to backup your blog before running the upgrade

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