How to Update WordPress Manually

Is your site getting this WordPress error after trying to update automatically?

Warning: copy(/home/xxx/public_html/wp-cron.php) [function.copy]: failed to open stream: Permission denied in /home/xxx/public_html/wp-cron.php

Could not copy file: /home/xxx/public_html/wp-cron.php

Installation Failed

Does this type of error look familiar? If so, this tutorial will help you fix that error!

Steps for Updating WordPress Manually

Until a few weeks ago, I had never updated my WordPress files AFTER my site was up and running. I was afraid that I would make a mistake updating the files and that my entire site would get ruined. But for security reasons, I needed to update. After reading a few tutorials, here’s what I found (and it’s easy than I thought)…

1) Download the newest version of WordPress to your desktop, extract the files, and immediately delete the wp-content folder and wp-config.php file. Then, zip/compress the new folders/files (without wp-content and wp-config.php). This will be the folder you use to overwrite existing content. We’ll get to that in a minute.

2) Back up your current site (including all files, folders, and database)

how to update wordpress manually

Typically you should check to make sure your backups actually work by installing them locally and testing them. However, I didn’t have any reason to suspect my files were corrupted so I did not test them locally.

3) Deactivate ALL current site plugins.

4) Delete ALL existing site files/folders except these below.
DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT delete these files:
wp-config.php file.
.htaccess file.
robots.txt file.
wp-images folder.
wp-content folder. You should delete the wp-content/cache/ folder AND the wp-content/plugins/widgets/ folder.
wp-includes/languages folder.

5) Upload and unzip the folders/files from Step 1.

6) Enjoy your newly updated WordPress site.

If you still have questions about how to update WordPress manually, please leave a comment below.

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