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Good Reasons to Upgrade WordPress

Alex King explains why you should upgrade WordPress, with some interesting explanations on the changes in WordPress.

There is one simple reason why you should upgrade: security.

The 1.5 branch of WordPress isn’t getting the security patches that the current development branch is. And even if someone were vigilantly applying patches to the 1.5 branch, that might not even be enough. Security vulnerabilities are reported to Matt and the team directly. If a vulnerability is not present in the latest version, the person maintaining the 1.5 branch might not hear about an issue until after it’s already in the wild.

I understand why people don’t feel the need to upgrade to 2.0.x when they don’t feel they need the new features added in this release. I don’t necessarily agree with all the choices that were made during the 2.0 development cycle either. I’m not here to play apologist for the active WordPress developers – and they certainly don’t need me to.

While I didn’t need any of the new features/changes/etc. that were added in 2.02, I do need my web sites to be secure.

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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen


  1. Posted March 14, 2006 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Lorelle are you aware of an easy way to upgrade, the way I’ve been doing it seems fairly difficult and a bit dangerous as I am afraid I am going to overwrite something important by FTP the files up.

    Thanks for your help.

  2. Posted March 14, 2006 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    Many people are intimidated by the upgrade process. The easiest way to upgrade is to set up your WordPress blog on a hosted server. Then they take care of the upgrading and you don’t have to think about it.

    Unfortunately, this can cause problems with upgrades such as the one for WordPress 2.0 when some WordPress Plugins went bork in the night. Keep your WordPress Plugins updated and this won’t be such a problem.

    Honestly, I’ve done this dozens and dozens of times. Just follow the step by step instructions. Take your time. Backup everything first. Then go through everything nice and easy. Do not do touch your /wp-content/ folder. If you want, you can even delete it from the zip file before you begin the process so you won’t take a chance.

    If you have customized or tweaked files in your /wp-admin/ folder, then make sure you have made notes of all those changes and then change these elements in the new files. It’s recommended that users not change the core programming files of WordPress to make upgrading easier, but people dig in anyway.

    Work has been ongoing to make upgrades and installs easier, but nothing is really available to the public yet. Because of the highly customizable nature of the full version of WordPress, auto-installs can cause problems without a heavy dose of checks and balances. As soon as I hear of one, trust me, I’ll be the first to use it. 😉

  3. Posted March 14, 2006 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

    Thanks Lorelle, I appreciate your help.

  4. Posted March 17, 2006 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    Lorelle: before the upgrade to 2.0.2 my blog was XHTML and CSS compliant. Now it isn’t and the only thing that has changed is the new version of wordpress. Where and how do I report this type of an issue? It is so frustrating to be constantly having to keep any eye out for these issues.

  5. Posted March 17, 2006 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    First, you need to determine what specifically is non-compliant. The WordPress Theme carries most of the weight for compliancy, and therefore, the Theme is the issue if it is the problem. The core header comes from WordPress which might have a problem there, and it is found in the root directory in /wp-blog-header.php. The problem might also be with a conflict with a WordPress Plugin that doesn’t quite work right with the new version.

    Track down exactly where the error is and then ask in the appropriate section in the WordPress Support Forum. Plugins with Plugins, Themes with Themes, etc.

    Also to search to see if anyone else is reporting similar things. This might be unique to you rather than a bug with WordPress. Something that might have been missed, or added inside of the post you are testing.

    Let me know what you find out.

  6. Posted March 17, 2006 at 9:16 pm | Permalink

    The issue was partly using Editor Monkey plugin, and I discovered missing attributes in the text area comment field. As you rightly stated it was in the theme. Thanks.

  7. Posted March 17, 2006 at 10:33 pm | Permalink

    Ah. Good find! You never know where those little devils will pop up. But you brought up a good point and another story idea. You are full of inspiration. Thanks!

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