I have a Wordpress blog that is hosted on a Windows server. I have been using the Wordpress Automatic Upgrade plugin for over a year now without any problems. However, the last time I decided to update to the latest version of Wordpress, things went terribly wrong. At some point the upgrade process ended with a bunch of PHP error messages and my blog was no longer accessible. After googling for some time I found out that the upgrade plugin does not work with the latest version of Wordpress. So, my question is what is the best way to restore my blog to its state before the upgrade?

I backed up all files on the server immediately after the failed upgrade and exported the MySQL database that was used by the blog. I also noticed that the upgrade plugin had backed up some files before the upgrade.

The first thing I tried was to replace all files that had a backed-up copy by the plugin. However, this didn't help. I hope this wasn't a mistake since I have a copy of all files and the DB immediately after the failed upgrade.

The next thing that comes to my mind is to delete all files from the server, do a fresh install of the latest Wordpress and then try to somehow gradually restore the plugins, themes, and content from the backup files I have.

Does anyone know if there is a better way to restore a f*****-up Wordpress installation? Is there a standard procedure in similar cases? Has anyone had the same problem with the automatic upgrade plugin?

  • So you didn't take a backup before making changes? – John Gardeniers Jan 19 '10 at 23:15
  • No, I didn't. I know it's a must but until the failed upgrade I had always relied on the upgrade plugin to handle the process and everything had been going smoothly. It seems I had to learn the hard way :( – tishon Jan 20 '10 at 11:26
  • Ah, another reason to run your Wordpress blog on a VM... Nothing like a snapshot before the upgrade, allowing you to snap back in the event of a failure like this question... – Dscoduc Jan 21 '10 at 0:50
  • Well, that's rather impossible in my case since my blog is hosted on a shared server. – tishon Jan 21 '10 at 8:16
  • As long as you learn from it it's not a complete loss. – John Gardeniers Jan 21 '10 at 8:25

The usual procedure is backup then upgrade. Not the other way around. If it's only the php that is broken, then download a clean copy from wordpress.org and install it. But keep your database. See if that works. If not, perform a full/new install then overwrite the clean installs database with your own from your backup.

  • I know I made a stupid mistake by not backing up before the upgrade, but there is nothing I can do about it now. I will do exactly what you suggest, but I was hoping that someone has had similar experience and could share specific restoration steps after a fresh install. Anyways, thanks for the answer. – tishon Jan 20 '10 at 11:40

One more thing you could try if you haven't already re-installed is disabling the plugins directory by renaming it. It could be that you have an incompatible plugin. This will often result in a blank white screen.

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