Updating Your Wordpress Website

Bruce Letterle - Friday, December 05, 2014

 Wordpress has become the most popular website content management software in the world by being free and relatively easy to use. However, it is Open Source software and subject to attacks from hackers all over the world. In order to keep your website secure and also patch any bugs, you need to keep it up to date with the latest version. This also means you need to update any plugins and themes you have installed.

Wordpress has released version 4.0.1 to address security vulnerabilities with all prior versions. Here is the official announcement- https://wordpress.org/news/2014/11/wordpress-4-0-1/.

Here are the steps you need to take to accomplish this.

1. Check the current version (4.0.1) of Wordpress versus your version.

When you login to Wordpress, there will be a notification at the top of your dashboard, indicating the current available version of Wordpress and whether you need to upgrade. To see your current version, mouse over the Wordpress logo in the top left of the dashboard and click on About Wordpress.

2. Check the availability of updates to your plugins and themes for the new version of Wordpress.

If you scroll down the left menu in Wordpress, you will see the Appearance (themes) and Plugins items. Click on each one and you should see an indication of which ones have an upgrade available. You should click on the vendor's website link to check compatibility with the version of Wordpress you are moving to.

3. Backup your website.

Be sure to make a complete backup of your website before beginning the upgrade process. You never know when a process might fail and leave your website a mess. Backups are not a feature of Wordpress, so you need to either add a plugin for it, or your web hosting control panel might have an option for it. A couple of good articles for backup plugin options are at:

http://www.wpmayor.com/top-wordpress-backup-plugins-2014/

http://www.wpbeginner.com/plugins/7-best-wordpress-backup-plugins-compared-pros-and-cons/.

4. Upgrade your Wordpress.

This is the easy part. Just click on the link provided in your dashboard upgrade notice to automatically install the new version. Make sure it completes and displays no errors.

5. Upgrade your plugins and themes.

This is also easy if the newest versions support your new version of Wordpress. Just go to Plugins or Appearance->Themes and click on the Upgrade Available link for each component that has one. Again, make sure the upgrade completes without errors.

6. Test your website.

Now go to your website and click around to all the pages to make sure everything still looks and works properly. You may have an instance with a plugin or theme that you would have to do some tweaking because of new features or enhancements.

7. Backup your website.

It's always good to make another backup! ;-)


Please understand that if your site gets hacked, it is your responsibility and cost to have it repaired and cleaned up. This usually would cost at least $100 per instance.

Also, it you do not wish to do the updates yourself, we offer services to do this for you. Please contact us for pricing

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