Gosh, I just love sharing my little blogging horror stories with you.
It's not my intention to scare you or dissuade you from blogging. I just want you to be aware of the mistakes that I've made, so you won't make them as well.
BTW, in case you don't know — before getting into affiliate marketing and blogging, I was an air traffic controller.
The most useful phrase I learned during that time was:
“Learn from the mistakes of others; you'll not live long enough to make them all yourself”.
Anyway, this little lesson comes from a WordPress upgrade that I completely botched.
All would have been fine had I bothered to stop, think and follow my own basic instructions — backup your blog prior to upgrading to the latest version of WordPress.
But after a number of successful automatic updates to other blogs, I ignored my own advice and just hit the “Click Here to Automatically Upgrade WordPress to latest Version ___” link on the AffiliateBloggerPRO member blog.
Initially, I saw nothing wrong with the blog's functionality, so I went on my merry way.
A couple of days later I realized what a mess I'd made.
Very few of the images were working. All those that had been uploaded via the WordPress administration to the wp-content/uploads/ folder were no longer linked correctly. In fact, some of the images had been deleted.
I started getting “Allowed memory size of 33554432” errors.
Page slugs and image names were changed… then things got worse.
One new member had somehow acquired ID #1, which had been mine. All my posts on both the blog and the BuddyPress forum were now attributed to that new member.
‘Members' refers to those members who joined through the Wishlist Member software, not as registered members via the WordPress interface.
And therein was the problem.
The Wishlist Member software is the crucial component in making that site run properly, and I hadn't checked the developer's site to make sure that it integrated with the WordPress update.
Had I bothered to do that, I would have seen that Stu and crew were still working to make the latest version of Wishlist Member integrate properly with the new WordPress.
And without a backup, I didn't have the option to roll back to the previous version of WordPress.
All in all, I wasted nearly a day getting the site back together.
So, you know what the lesson is … again … backup before upgrading!!!
I had a minor glitch when I updated to WP 3.03, and luckily the issue was minor so the fix was quick and isolated to one plugin, but had the problem been major, I would have been in a world of hurt.
Thanks for your advice Ros on backing up my blogs, especially since my older blog, which makes the $$ right now has over 130 posts and 300 comments….fixing that would be a nightmare.
Great tip. I’ve been guilty of this in the past, myself. Upgrading isn’t always better, especially as soon as a newer version of anything is released. Wait for the kinks to work themselves out!
Steve @ Technology says
I spend way too much time myself tweaking WordPress plugin settings that I am considering just letting the old blogs stay the way they are, without ever adding any plugins or updating anything.
If you upgrade through Fantastico on your server (rather than through the WordPress back office) it automatically does a backup before doing the upgrade. I’ve not had to use it yet the backup yet but it’s nice to know that it does it.
David Jackson says
One of the coolest plugins for wordpress is Backup Buddy. I spoke about this on one of my pasts podcasts. It backs up everything (including the database). If someone thing goes horrible, you can recreate your blog with a few clicks. Its $45 for a personal blog, or $75 for multiple blogs (Rosalind would get this version). Kind of pricy until you realize the time it woudl save to recreate everything.
http://www.schoolofpodcasting.com/backupbuddy (*Affiliate link).
Sane advice to keep you sane, I’m sure. Upgrade mistakes doesn’t have a “back’ button. Hehe. I am currently having new domain woes. Enjoy your weekend!
Laura @ learn affiliate marketing says
That is a good reminder. I kind of cringe every time I let it do an automatic update, knowing it could cause problems, and that’s just playing with fire. I don’t have membership software on the site, but there certainly could be other glitches. I will learn from your mistake, so thanks for telling us your experience! Glad you got it back together.
Clint cora, Speaker/Author says
I had a similar issue with upgrading a few months back but we found that it was something about an incompatibility with the host server. Good thing I did have a backup and hesitated to upgrade for a few of WP’s new releases. When I switched my websites with their blogs to Bluehost, I decided to give it another try and this time had no problem. Moral of the story here is for those who are thinking about using the Clicshop shopping cart with their associated web hosting, stay away from them.
I always try to update first – it really takes less than a minute. But my server people have heard my plea more than a few times asking when they last backed up my site, and could they put it back together again.
So, usually before I freak out, I go to my hosting company and see when they last backed up. If it’s only a few days, it’ll take me much less time to re-create a few posts then re-create my blog. So sorry Ros, that’s sucz!
MK Casey van Bronkhorst says
Backups should be named “save-your-life-modules.” I’ve had great luck with the plugin named WordPress Database Backups by Austin Matzko. http://austinmatzko.com/wordpress-plugins/wp-db-backup/
WordPress Database Backups works unobtrusively in the background, emailing a backup once a day (or however you want it set). It doesn’t replace the complete backup that should be performed before an update, but for protecting against server catastrophes, it’s high on my list of gotta-have modules.