WordPress 2.7.1 has just been released.  The new version is comprised mostly of bug fixes.  It’s not really all that exciting unless you’re a total WordPress geek like me.  If you too have been waiting with bated breath for the next version of WordPress, then you’re undoubtedly eager to try out the new automatic upgrade feature.

This new feature is supposed to allow users to upgrade their WordPress software with the click of a mouse.  Does it work that way?  Not quite.

The first issue is that when you click on “Please update now” you’re instructed to make sure that you backup your  files and database.  If you’re not technical that can be a huge problem.

The database backup sounds pretty scary, but that part is actually pretty easy to do.  To backup your database click on “Plugins” in the left navigation column.  Then look for a backup plugin.  I’m using WordPress Database Backup.  Install the plugin and backup your system.  It’s good to do this once a month or so anyway.

Backing up your files can be more complicated.  I’ll write more about that later.  In the meantime here’s some tips from WordPress on backing up your WordPress files.

Once everything is backed up then you should be able to click on the “upgrade” button and be done.  That’s how it should work theorectically anyway.  On Sunday I tried to upgrade 3 blogs on two different website hosts.  Two of the blogs upgraded without a hitch.  One of them, this blog in fact, didn’t upgrade.  It’s interesting to note that one of the blogs that DID upgrade is hosted by the same company as this site.

Since this upgrade is only 5 days old AND this is the first time the automatic upgrade functionality has been tested there isn’t much assistance at WordPress.  They had a few ideas, but their tips didn’t fix the upgrade problem.

My website host is investigating the situation.  The issue could turn out to be a server configuration.  If that’s the case, then it should be easy to fix and I should be on my way to automatic upgrade bliss. (Did I mention how geeky I am?)  Look for an update on this issue Friday.

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