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I can't use any of the import plugins because of the older version -- so it's kind of a pain, plus the URL permalinks arent very optimal. Any ideas on how to do this? I'm afraid I'd have to do this manually!

import plugin I mean. the xml import file format changed so I can use it to upload content =/ –

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

If you site is live then you shouldn't directly update that, although update in the recent version of wordpress is very easy and seemless but that wasn't the case in 2.1 though.

Also here is the list of steps that I will recommend you to take:

  1. Make the list of all plugins.
  2. Make sure none of the plugin's are responsible for site's main functionality. (As kaiser said its okay if they are only presentational).
  3. There is 99% chance that your theme will break with or at least will complain of deprecated functions with wordpress 3.1, so you have two options, either switch to standard theme or check your site for errors from theme after each upgrade until you are at 3.1
  4. Install the Wordpress 2.1 on test machine and clone your live site, not all the data but at least the functionality.
  5. Disable all the plugins responsible for main functionlaity that you noted in Step 2
  6. Upgrade to the next stable version of wordpress that was released after your current version.
  7. Enable the plugins one by one and check your test site.
  8. If there are errors see if you can fix them or disable the plugin. You might also see errors from your theme if you haven't switched to standard theme, so try to fix them too.
  9. If you have upgraded to Wordpress 3.1 then Congratulations else goto Step 5.

Hope this will be helpful to you and you will have easy upgrade to 3.1.

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This worked exactly! – qodeninja May 24 '11 at 17:23

I could be missing something, because I'm not sure why you're talking about using the import functions, but you could download a few older versions from the release archive and upgrade incrementally. Try going to 2.5, then 2.9, then 3.1.

If there's some reason you're concerned that won't work, could you provide more details on the situation?

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import plugin I mean. the xml import file format changed so I can use it to upload content =/ – qodeninja May 18 '11 at 4:56
So you're trying to import the data from the old site into a fresh install of 3.1, instead of upgrading the existing 2.1 site? Is the 2.1 site not active anymore, and you only have an export file with the data? If that's the case, I would start out by installing version 2.1 and import the data into that installation, and then upgrade the installation to 3.1 from there. – Ian Dunn May 18 '11 at 5:28
@codeninja, you should update your question with this comment, as it clarifies what your problem is – Lea Cohen May 19 '11 at 7:15

Yes, I would say you should upgrade to WP 3.1 instead of importing content in WP 3.1

Like Ian said, you should do an incremental upgrade. I have seen the upgrade working from 2.2.1 to 3.1 directly (Check this tweet)

But lets say you should download and over write 2.3 files over your installation. BRowse in your dashboard, it will ask you to upgrade database, do so. Then finally overwrite 3.1 files and again upgrade database when you are asked in the dashboard.

and make sure you do a backup before doing anything else, so you can revert back to this state if needed.

Edit: Disable all your plugins before attempting to upgrade. Its very likely to create issues in your case. You don't want to be stuck in between. And I can't stress enough, backup before you do anything.

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The below suggestions all got +1 from me: Update incremental is a good idea.

You should also carefully go through your theme in case it modifies anything of the internal structure. Better would be to switch to the standard theme while upgrading and also turn off all of your plugins. You never really know what they could be doing. (as long as they are not only presentational).

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