WordPress Automatic Upgrade plugin update

Lots and lots of bugs and sleepless nights and no paid work later. Here is the next version of WPAU. I have fixed almost all of the bugs you have reported which I heartily thank each and every one of you for. Here is the NextG version of the plugin which works on most of the servers that have different users for FTP and web.Here is what I mean by that

On some shared servers the webserver (Apache) is the same for multiple user and in those cases the Apache user was not allowed to access files uploaded using a FTP client. To overcome the situation I added a preliminary check where it checks if the plugin is able to update the site or not.

If the error is due to FTP user and webuser being different you will be asked for your FTP credentials. We do not save any of this information with us and the information will be discarded at the end of the upgrade.

This is necessary if you need to run a automatic upgrade on your server, without this the information the plugin will not run.

What do we do with the FTP information?

With the FTP information you provide WPAU will change file permissions so that WPAU can write the files to your server. Once the upgrade is over WPAU will automatically change the permissions back to read only.

This step has been added so that you do not have to do the permission change manually. Only in certain rare cases will it fail to upgrade permission’s and ask you to do so manually.

Here are some of the bug fixes for the latest version.

  • Runs a premilinary check to see if your server is compatible so that WPAU can run
  • Advices to clear backups from past upgrades
  • Fixed errors for virtually hosted sites
  • Automatically change permissions for upgrade after asking FTP credentials
  • Fixed bug where DB error was reported when WPAU used to fail
  • Fixed bug where you could not see log when the WPAU used to fail
  • Updated FAQ to add the new questions
  • Fixed issues to only backup and upgrade core WP files (This was a issue when WP was hosted in root directory)
  • Fixed a issue where wp_redirect was not working due to header file already being included in the plugin
  • Cleaned up the code to make it better

That’s it folks, all your bugs and abuses are welcome since it helps me make this plugin better. I hope you will in future use this plugin to upgrade your wordpress installation without any errors and headaches.

Also with so much love and people reporting bugs I am so glad that I have been able to fix most of

Frequently Asked Questions

What is WordPress Automatic Upgrade?

WordPress Automatic Upgrade (WPAU) is a plugin that automatically upgrades your wordpress version to the latest files provided by wordpress.org.

Should I interfere with the WordPress Automatic Plugin Process?

No never, If the plugin fails it fails for a reason please do not interfere with any process that fails.

Do I need to change permissions on files?

No WPAU will ask you for your FTP credentials and do it automatically.

Why does WPAU run the preliminary checks?

WPAU runs the preliminary checks to determine in conditions in which it can feasibly update your site to the latest version provided by WordPress.

Why does WPAU ask me to clean up files?

When you run the plugin once we create backup files at the end of the process you need to delete these. If you missed deleting these files then WPAU will ask you to run cleanup before continuing.

Why use this plugin?

WordPress releases regular updates and security fixes to the software and after sometime makes it mandatory. Every time you have to manually upgrade your WordPress installation. This plugin helps

you to upgrade your installation without any efforts. We also ensure you will always download the latest version.

Which version of the WordPress does it upgrade to?

It upgrades to the latest version that WordPress has made available for download.

What is the lowest version from which I can upgrade?

The lowest version of WordPress I have tested this to work is with WordPress 1.5.

What files do you upgrade

This plugin only upgrades the files that are essential which includes the file in wp-includes, wp-admin and the root directory

I made some modification in the themes, will that be affected?

No, we do not touch those files at all. We only upgrade files in the root directory and wp-includes and wp-admin directory.

I modified the plugin files to play around and something went wrong, will you provide support for that?

No, this plugin is intended to run as it is. Support is free except when u modify it.

My site is in maintenance mode and the plugin did not complete. What do I do now?

Only under some rare condition will this happen. To get your site back online you need to do these things.

  1. Login to your site using FTP.
  2. Delete the index.php file.
  3. Rename the index.php.wpau.bak file to index.php

Performing these steps should remove the maintenance mode message.

Why does the plugin say that it cannot upgrade my site?

We run preliminary checks to see if the plugin can run well with your site. Only in certain cases it will tell you that it cannot upgrade your site because the functionality of the plugin depends on it.

Why I am asked for my FTP credentials?

Initially we try to check whether your WordPress installation is writable or not. If we find that its not writable we ask you for you FTP credentials so that we can do the necessary things to make it


What do you do when you get my FTP credentials?

First of all for security reasons we do not store your FTP Credentials. We only use it to change the file permission so that the plugin can run normally.

Once we run the appropriate steps to check that everything is alright only then will the plugin continue the further steps.

What do you do when I give you my FTP credentials?

When you provide us with your FTP credentials we log into your site using FTP and change the permissions on files and directories such that it can be written by a file running on your server.

Is changing the permission on my site essential?

If you are asking in regards to WPAU absolutely. In order to complete the automatic upgrade we need write permissions to your site.

When will be asked for my FTP credentials and why?

You will only be asked for your FTP credentials when we cannot write to your server.


Some shared servers run different the webserver and apache as different users which is for security reason. In that case when we using the webserver cannot modify the files you have uploaded using a

FTP client.

In such a case we could ask you to do the steps required manually, but in the sense of automatic we want to make sure your upgrade is really automatic. When you provide us with those details we do

not store it (though we may ask you for this everytime we determine your server is unaccesible for us) we maintain a security level which no other plugins can exploit over and above the one

WordPress provides.

We are very much that this plugin should be automatic and only if our preliminary checks fail initially we will ask you for the FTP credentials. You will never be asked for that when the plugin can run

without the credentials.

If I am running on a server where FTP user and webserver user are different will I be able to overwrite / delete files using FTP

Yes absolutely. The plugin makes sure that whichever files it writes can be deleted by the user without having to contact the system administrator.

Why don’t you provide a option for me to upload the version I want?

Couple of things here. a. You should always upgrade to the latest version provided by WordPress. b. I do not want users to upload files that requires me to do multiple validations. The WordPress files that this plugin downloads is the best one I could use.

Will it remember the plugins that were active?

Yes it will remember the plugins that were active before upgradation and only activate those plugins.

How much bandwidth does the plugin use?

The plugin using about 2-3MB of your bandwidth to download files. You will use more than that in a regular upgrade process.

How long will my files and db backups be available?

This plugin is to be used for a continious process till completion, it provides you with backups which you should download before moving to the next step. If you do not download the backups, at the

end of the process you will be given an option to download it. Clicking clean up will delete those backup files.

Where are the files and db backup stored?

The files are db backups are stored in a folder called wpau-backup in the root folder of your site.

Does WordPress automatic upgrade provide a rollback?

No it does not, the function of WPAU is to seamlessly upgrade your versions. Rollback features will be added in future versions.

he bugs in this plugin. Though this plugin is still in infancy and all your bugs will help in bettering it and making it a real good plugin.

I sincerely thank everyone for using this plugin and telling me the bugs and hopefully this will be a real good way people would trust to upgrade their WordPress installation without battling a eye lid.


To do a new installation of the plugin, please follow these steps

  1. Download the wordpress-automatic-upgrade.zip file to your local machine.
  2. Unzip the file
  3. Upload wordpress-automatic-upgrade folder to the /wp-content/plugins/ directory
  4. Activate the plugin through the ‘Plugins’ menu in WordPress

If you have already installed the plugin

  1. De-activate the plugin
  2. Download the latest files
  3. Follow the new installation steps


  • Version 0.1 released Tuesday, July 17th 2007
  • Version 0.4 released Thursday, July 26th 2007


All files and their contents are licensed under the General Public License(GPL).


If you feel this plugin has helped you can leave a small donation towards further plugin development.


Download WordPress Automatic Upgrade v0.4 downloaded times

Please note this plugin is still in beta state and may have bugs. If you find any bugs or want to report any problems you have faced please feel free to leave your comments or you can send me a email at [email protected]

Published by

Keith Dsouza

I am the editor-in-chief and owner of Techie Buzz. I love coding and have contributed to several open source projects in the past. You can know more about me and my projects by visiting my Personal Website.I am also a social networking enthusiast and can be found active on twitter, you can follow Keith on twitter @keithdsouza. You can click on my name to visit my Google+ profile.

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  • Thanks for the update, will try it out and post back.

    BTW, the readme.txt file in the plugin folder says “Stable tag: 0.3″ and the “wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php” lists the version as 0.3.

    Because oif the WP plugins page also displays version as 0.3 even though you are calling it version 0.4 in the changelog.

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  • Thanks for the plugin….
    I havent tested it yet, ‘coz i got fantastico to install WP for me. However, for the upgrade to WP 2.3, WPAU is my saviour :D

    • AFAIK, Fantastico also offers automatic upgrades?
      Correct me if I’m wrong…

      Nice plugin all the same!

      • Well it does but have you noticed what version it is showing? Its still showing 2.3.3 so WPAU gives you the latest automatic upgrades.

    • Fantastico is awesome – It is included in hostgator.. I would be lost without it

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  • chris

    I downloaded and used the plugin on a test installation of wp 2.02 beta at yahoo, all went well. Then using it on real site all seemed to go well until I tried to write a new post. No longer able to use previous Catagories or create new ones. New pages will all be Uncatagorized! HELP!
    In place of the Catagory listings is this message:
    WordPress database error:
    [Unknown column ‘link_count’
    in ‘where clause’]
    wp_categories WHERE
    category_parent = 0 AND (
    link_count = 0 OR
    category_count != 0 OR (
    link_count = 0 AND
    category_count = 0 ) ) ORDER BY
    category_count DESC

    I rebuilt the database and upgreaded all links, but no luck, turning off all plugins made no difference,

    • keith

      Hi Chris,

      I tried to search the release archive but I did not find any release version 2.02. From where Can I download the version?

      Please let me know so that I can help you fix the problems.


      • Chris

        Hi back Keith,

        Yes you are right there is nothing in the archive; the only place 2.02b resides is on Yahoo.com. But I could send you the copy of my test install of 2.02b which has only 2 posts – tests. All users of WP on yahoo are stuck with that version – yahoo refuses to upgrade, and manually upgrading is a disaster in the making. The testblog zip is 1.1 megs – I use a mac if that’s a problem for you. I exported the db and it is 52kb – .sql.gz

        Let me know, and contact me

  • There are so many ideas about so many things. It does sometime happens that an idea really seems worthless, only to be proved later on to be a million $ idea.

    Having said that, I beleive the wordpress automatic update plug in is not the plug in I would want to have installed on my blog. The reason is simple. I dont want to have something that is not tested entirely by the community. Although the WordPress itself is such a great application, However with absolutely no third party audits, no body knows what may come out of wordpress in any NEW release. I would not want to, nor recommend anyone just to go ahead and update to newer versions of wordpress as soon as they are released.

    This However would not apply to my test sites. I may want to test any new product on the test version of my blog. BTW everyone of you should have a test version of your blog. Most of us dont.

    • Hi WP-iA

      You wrote: “I dont want to have something that is not tested entirely by the community.”

      Isn’t that rather selfish? I mean, just letting others do the hard work, experience problems, resolve problems, and when everything is fine, you join the game and get it all for nothing?

      After all, you are talking about a “community”.

      • No dear, it is not selfish, becasue you misunderstood me. I am not talking about not testing something myself, what I am talking here is that on any serious site … you don’t put stuff that has not seen the test of the times.

        Please read the last paragraph of my comment.

        • Okay, I see. But I don’t agree with you. I consider JohnChow.com’s blog for example for a very serious blog. After all, he makes more than $10,000 per month with it, and I know that he has tried plug-ins that was totally new. Yes, some has given him problems, but still his blog is serious.

          If you have a backup – which every serious blog should have – you should have no problem testing new plug-ins with your blog.

        • Although I even disagree in trying a BRAND new plug-in right away on a production level site. John Chow might only be lucky. He might have tested that on his test site or have just gone though the comments of the people who tried that within that day. Who knows. This is pure speculation what a 3rd person did or did not.

          But still think about it. Updating the whole of WordPress core with a snap is far more different then trying a new plug-in.

  • Hi Keith

    I tried your latest version of the plugin (0.4), but I get an error message. A new one this time.

    It sais:

    Warning: ftp_mkdir() [function.ftp-mkdir]: Aucun nom de repertoire specifie in /usr/home/xxx/money-online101.com/htdocs/tips/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wpau_prelimcheck.class.php on line 393

    Warning: ftp_site() [function.ftp-site]: Aucun nom de fichier specifie in /usr/home/xxx/money-online101.com/htdocs/tips/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wpau_prelimcheck.class.php on line 399

    “Aucun nom de fichier specifié” means “no file name has been specified”.

    My webserver is FreeBSB, PHP 4.4.

    Does that tell you anything? Feel free to contact me by email, if you like.

    Kind regards,
    Britt Malka

    • MTO

      I had this same problem. Same errors. I’m using linux server, so nothing to do with that.

      Apart from those error warnings all seemed fine, it does say “done WPAU is ready to roll”, but in view of the above errors I didn’t know if it would be safe, so I didn’t proceed.
      I have no idea what to do, what can be done?


      • Livia

        I do get a similar error message which say the following:

        Warning: ftp_rawlist() [function.ftp-rawlist]: Unable to create temporary file. Check permissions in temporary files directory. in /wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wpau_prelimcheck.class.php on line 206

        Warning: ftp_rawlist() [function.ftp-rawlist]: Unable to create temporary file. Check permissions in temporary files directory. in /wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wpau_prelimcheck.class.php on line 206

        Warning: ftp_rawlist() [function.ftp-rawlist]: Unable to create temporary file. Check permissions in temporary files directory. in /wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wpau_prelimcheck.class.php on line 206

        I, too am afraid to continue with the upgrade process…

        I know that my host allows tmp directories only in a specific place – could this cause the troubles?

        Thanks a lot for a fast reply and thanks a lot for providing such a great plugin!

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  • Two words for you about this plugin…KICK ASS! I upgraded two sites all the way from version 1.5.2 to the latest 2.2.1with no problems whatsoever. Thanks, a beer fund donation is on its’ way. :)

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  • I wanted to say thanks for your Automatic update plugin. As a non techie person I couldn’t cope with doing the upgrade which I urgently needed to do as my travel website was hacked through my WordPress blog. The hackers changed the homepage of my website. It was an awful thing to happen to a small business. I rely on my son for my IT support and he’s not always available so the more things I can do on my own the better. I’ve stumbled this post and I’ll write about your plugin in my other blog about blogging for business.

    • keith

      Hi Karen.

      Thanks for the appreciation. I also recieved your email and am trying to figure out the problem for the other blog.


  • Thanks, Keith, for trying to assist with the upgrade of my other blog.

  • Wow – I was scared to do this, just in case anything broke down, I’ve done a lot of customization here and there over the last few years, and I didn’t remember where and what not I had done stuff – but I tried the plug-in anyway, and it worked seamlessly! Very Nice plugin! Thank you!

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  • g

    Great functions. you’ve made my admin life easier.

    just one feature request. the ability to style the maintenence page.

  • Rk

    This is the greatest plugin (in the first place, it should not have to be plugin at all ..the WP guys should have made this automated install a part of WP itself..going by the frequent releases they are making)
    Anyways, thanks a lot. It worked like a dream !

    • keith

      Thanks RK I am glad it worked for you, hopefully it should be perfect in coming weeks

  • Hi,
    I’m a very active member of the Israeli WordPress community.
    In order to work with WordPress in Hebrew (i.e. RTL) we do some translations and lots of changes in the code for every WordPress version.

    Will it possible to change the plugin to work with our repository ?
    (code wise and permission wise)

    • keith

      Hi Dakar,

      I have plans to make this plugin compatible for other languages once I fix the major bugs with it.


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  • Congratulations for this plug-in !

    We have used it for 2 of our blogs and that went very well. It is really well done.
    We will soon talk about it on our blog (in French) : http://blog.infomedsolutions.com

    Keep up the good work !

    • keith

      Hi Jean,

      Glad it worked out well for you and thanks for the appreciation.

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