To upgrade or not to upgrade

WordPress 2.2 came out five days ago and I am still deciding if I should upgrade or not.

Why upgrade:

  • I like being up-to-date
  • Integrated widgets instead of a separate plugin
  • A plugin sandbox that will test all the plugins before actually running them. Previously, if a plugin wasn’t installed correctly or was incompatible with the current WordPress or theme version it would pretty much crash the whole site. Now, if a plugin won’t pass the test it simply will not load thus keeping the site running.
  • Deactivate plugins automatically instead of one by one when upgrading

Why not upgrade:

  • I usually upgrade through my host’s admin panel that offers a one-click automatic update. They have not implemented an update to WordPress 2.2 yet as upgrades are usually offered a week or so later.
  • I don’t know if my theme is 2.2 compatible
  • Some plugins and widgets might not be 2.2 compatible. Upgrading WordPress affects different parts of the web that the software is entangled in. When you update the core other parts such as themes and plugins are affected as well. It takes quite a lot of time to check all the plugin authors’ blogs to see whether they have upgraded their plugins. WordPress 2.2 was released only a few days ago so chances are very unlikely that plugin authors have updated their plugins in these few days as they write plugins for free. The every expanding world of plugins and themes consists of wonderful people who dedicate their spare time to write these plugins and themes. We cannot expect them to update as soon as a new WordPress version has been released.
  • I am writing my thesis about WordPress and I am currently writing about 2.1.3 so I might have to rewrite some stuff. On the other hand I could upgrade to 2.2, rewrite some stuff and then stick to 2.2 for a while. Whenever you write about software the moment you publish something (a blog post, an essay or a thesis) it is immediately outdated. WordPress has released about seven upgrades ever since I started working on my thesis which is both a pleasure and a burden.


I am going to set up a testground to install WordPress 2.2 and see wether or not it works with my current theme and plugins. I also maintain the Masters of Media blog but due to technical restrictions I cannot set up a testground there. If I have time I will also check the theme and plugins on my personal testground and if everything works I will upgrade.

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