The Fine Art of WP Upgrades. Wait up!

wordpress upgrade page logo

You click on the shiny upgrade button on your WP Dashboard, but then something is broken – a plugin, a function, whatnot. Easy tiger, not so fast ..

A typical scenario:-

  • The blogger: Keen, easily tempted, likes security, bug fixes, insurance.
  • The problem: Bugs, broken plugins & functions, wasted time.
  • The solution: Downgrade WP version, else deactivate plugins, reactivating individually.
  • The reaction: Yikes. You must be chokin'.
  • The moral: Patience is a virtue.

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WordPress 2.8.2 Preview Problem (for example)

I AM GUILTY. Yup, class idiot. I'd normally wait before pressing that button, but this time I didn't .. think.

So I upgraded to 2.8.2. I mean, what could go wrong? 2.8.1 was sweet. And this time, there's only a single bug fix, and it looked sooo obscure. Surely it wouldn't affect the site? It did, and now I can't preview new posts.

.. Big deal, you say, that's not too much of a hassle, just wait for the next upgrade. Sure, you're probably right but, when you're giving prosumer techie advice, like what I is, you have a stylesheet as long as mine, and hand code, you kind of need a preview before going live with errors and screwing up everyones' machines.

Wait Before Upgrading

Whatever WordPress version you have, if you wish to upgrade to a fresh new release, here's the deal: WAIT.

Wait for the bugs to become addressed. ‘Cos beta-testing isn't enough.

Wait for your key plugins to be upgraded to suit the new version, should that be relevant per plugin.

Wait .. well, in my experience, probably a week or three. Make that 3.

How to Downgrade a WordPress version

So you fell into the trap too, huh? Here are some handy resources:-

Hmmn. Let's just say this is a learning exercise.


About the Author:

Olly Connelly (yeah, that's me) blogs at, polices WordPress security at and helps noobs build web servers at, so if you've got sleeping problems you know where to come.


  1. the_guv  July 30, 2009

    @holyhttp .. damn, holy moly m8! sorry to hear. some fine backup guides lurking about somewhere on this site, if you wanna take a peek.

  2. holyhttp  July 30, 2009

    I have experienced worse when upgrading from 2.7 to 2.8. An unsuccessful automatic upgrade wiped out all my files including the wp-content. Needless to say I lost all my media files. Thank goodness it was a new site about 3 months old. I confess I am not an avid blogger that’s why that loss was minimal.
    My advice folks, not only should you backup your blog database but you also need to do the same with the uploads folder.

  3. the_guv  July 25, 2009

    @Jerry .. cheers Jerry, best of luck

  4. jerry  July 25, 2009

    thanks for the Info i didnt updated still so will wait for some solution

  5. the_guv  July 25, 2009

    @Max .. cheers for that .. valuable points. Definitely a toughie, for sure depends on your setup. Darn right, backup and be done with, well, backing up, bejeevers 😛

  6. Max  July 24, 2009

    You’ll always see that YOU are the single person that is using that obscure plugin that is causing an upgrade to go bonkers. Pity when it happens to you, but to advice against upgrading for that reason… I dunno.

    I’ve hit the shiny button myself, and everything still works fine, previews and all. Better yet, I’m protected against that small obscure whatsit that the upgrade is supposed to fix.

    Upgrading is always a matter of YMMV — it’s also a great reminder of why exactly they tell you to backup _before_ you upgrade. =]

  7. the_guv  July 24, 2009

    @Gautam .. you’re most welcome. Kind regards, Sir.

  8. Gautam  July 24, 2009

    Hi Guv,

    Thanks for the mention. I still haven’t upgraded to the latest version for the same reason.

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