Using IIS 6 on XP Server '03, using WP 3.2.1, when I attempt to use the auto-update for my plugins, I receive this message:

The update process is starting. This process may take a while on some hosts, so please be patient.

Enabling Maintenance mode…

Updating Plugin [Plugin Name] (1/1) Downloading update from http://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/polldaddy.2.0.10.zip

Unpacking the update…
Installing the latest version…
Removing the old version of the plugin…
Plugin update failed.
An error occurred while updating [Plugin Name]: Could not create directory.

Disabling Maintenance mode…

All updates have been completed.

When I go to delete a plugin through the WP interface, it removes the plugin from the "Installed Plugins" list; however, when I navigate to the directory on the server, I still see the plugin folder in the wp-content folder and I can't open it or delete it. Says, "Access is denied".

I don't have any troubles installing new plugins via the WP "Install Plugins" web interface.

I've set the IUSR & IIS_WPG accounts with full control on the wp-content folder and it cascades the permissions down to the other folders. So when I update, it should have the rights to remove/update plugin files.

The weirdest thing to me is if I restart IIS (iisreset), I'm able to auto-update via the web interface just fine & I am then able to delete the "removed" plugin folder that said "Access is denied".

This is frustrating as I don't have time to always stop what I'm doing to reset IIS & wait on it to start back up again.

Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


I had the same problem. When auto-updating, certain files would get "locked" somehow stopping the rest of the update process.

Are you using Windows cache extension for PHP by any chance?

Read the following post: http://ruslany.net/2011/04/wincache-and-wordpress-plugin-upgrade-problem/

  • Apparently I am. I checked my WPI and it says WinCache Ext 1.1 for php5.2 is installed. Thanks for the link.
    – joshmax
    Commented Nov 7, 2011 at 19:40
  • no problem - this bug drove me nuts before I as able to pinpoint the cause.
    – Bundarr
    Commented Nov 7, 2011 at 19:56
  • WPI installed it for me originally, so I'm not sure where to extract the files to now.
    – joshmax
    Commented Nov 7, 2011 at 21:28
  • thanks! I'll have to wait until the next plugin needs updating, but I'm pretty sure it's fixed. I was able to delete a plugin without a problem.
    – joshmax
    Commented Nov 8, 2011 at 21:37
  • Your answer resulted in a big win for me with the execs! Thanks! Commented Mar 13, 2013 at 20:56

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