Updating WordPress

  • Applies to: All Services
    • Difficulty: Easy
    • Time Needed: 10
    • Tools Required: WordPress installed


WordPress is an open source blog tool and publishing platform powered by PHP and MySQL. It's often customized into a "Content Management System" (CMS) and can be used as a web application platform.


Since WordPress is open-source software, it is important to keep the core software updated to the most recent version to protect against the latest security vulnerabilities.


Our WordPress Hosting products keep themselves updated to the latest WordPress version automatically. If automatic updates are a major priority for your WordPress site, you may wish to consider upgrading or moving to one of our WordPress Hosting hosting plans.

What are the minimum requirements to update WordPress?

The minimum requirements to run WordPress may be found on the WordPress Codex Minimum Requirements.

How do I check to see if my WordPress site meets the requirements?

If you are on the Grid, you are already running the most current versions of MySQL and PHP required to run WordPress. A newer DV will also run current versions by default, but PHP and MySQL may need to be upgraded manually on extremely old DV servers.

However, there are a variety of WordPress plugins that will detect the version of MySQL and PHP your site is running. One great one is ServerBuddy by PluginBuddy.com. Alternatively, you may check manually by following the below references for instructions:

  1. Read this article for more information on checking and specifying the PHP version that you are running: How can I specify the PHP version for web applications on the Grid?
  2. Check the version of MySQL that you are using, this can be found inside of PHPMyAdmin. Please see this article for details: Managing a MySQL database with phpMyAdmin.

A few important notes when updating WordPress...

  1. Starting with version 3.7, when there is a new version of WordPress available as a "." release (such as 3.7 to 3.7.1) the update will be performed automatically by the software. If your WordPress version is prior to 3.7, you will need to upgrade to 3.7 to enable this behavior. To disable this behavior, please read the article at WPBeginniner about "How to Disable Automatic Updates in WordPress." 
  2. When there is a major release of WordPress (such as 3.7.1 to 3.8) you will be notified via the WordPress admin that an update is available and would you like to update your WordPress version. To enable automatic updates for all WordPress core updates, themes, and plugins, you may look into the plugin Automatic Updater.


Always make a full database and files backup prior to updating to major versions of WordPress.

Always back-up before you update to major versions

  • You should be making backups of your WordPress' database and files on a regular basis. If you are not, we strongly recommend doing this. In addition, please make a manual backup before performing major updates. More information on backup up may be found on the WordPress Codex under WordPress Backups.

OK, I'm ready to update WordPress...

  • After you have made a backup and are ready to update, there will be a link on the dashboard to update your WordPress. Click this link to start the process. Alternatively, you may download the WordPress files and copy them to your web server's WordPress directory or you may update using WP-CLI at an SSH prompt.
  • Complete information for updating WordPress may be found on the WordPress Codex at Updating WordPress. Or, for the extended guide, please click here.