Automattic has adopted a WordPress upgrade philosophy that says (in part):

After the 2.1 release, we decided to adopt a regular release schedule every 3-4 months with the features primarily driven by ideas voted on by our users.

Since version 2.9 was released in December 2009, their roadmap projects that 3.0 will be available sometime in April 2010.  This, of course,  doesn’t account for incremental updates (the 2.8 branch, after all, had 6 in between releases). And the tireless themers and plugin authors will continue to work hard to make sure their efforts work with the latest software, so that adds complexity as well.

Unfortunately, it seems to mean that every time you launch your WordPress administrative panel, that something needs to be updated. It can be quite disconcerting to keep up and we sympathize with you. Luckily, if you are using well-coded themes and plugins, the upgrade process is quite easy and it often goes smooth.

But …

  • Developers do abandon their plugins and formerly good plugins can go “bad”
  • Some themes might be coded for older versions of WordPress, and updating the software and plugins can mess up your back-end and the way your theme functions as well
  • Some plugin updates throw a fatal error messages, potentially causing you to have to reconsider, update, and even change some functionality
  • Some plugin updates chug and churn to finally display the “white screen” of death
  • Some hosts are still not even allowing auto-update, which makes it exponentially harder to manage your WordPress installs

Ah, the fun never ends.

Good new for our BlogOnCloud9 clients, our services include daily backups and we can perform regularly updates for your sites on your behalf if you don’t want to.

Note: because our client’s sites are often heavily-customized, we do not blindly blast updates. When necessary, we’ll systemically and carefully upgrade the blog software and any plugins, which minimizes any downtime and allows us to react to any unexpected issues that arise.

Not a BlogOnCloud9 client yet? We’d be happy to help you migrate your site – or host your first WordPress blog with us. Let us know!

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