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When I try to upgrade or install a plugin I get a successful message:

Downloading install package from http://downloads.wordpress.org/plugin/jquery-lightbox-gallery.zip…

Unpacking the package…

Installing the plugin…

Successfully installed the plugin Fancy Gallery 1.0.27.

Activate Plugin | Return to Plugin Installer`

If however I have a look via ftp in my plugins directory the plugin has not been installed and the new plugin folder does not exist.

Then when I click the Activate Plugin link I get the following error The plugin does not have a valid header. which is not surprising considering the plugin hasn't been installed.

This happens no matter which plugin I try to install. It's strange because I have several other wordpress installations on the same host, and infact two other separate wordpress installations on the same domain and I have never had this problem.

I tried re-uploading a fresh installation of wordpress over the top of the current one and there was no change. I tried deactivating every single plugin and switching to the basic theme but it still didn't work. Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Update: So I tried making a new FTP account, and I can now add plugins using this new account. However when I try to upgrade a plugin I still get a Could not remove the old plugin. Plugin update failed. error.

  • It is a long shot, but try switching themes to rule out a theme problem. – Charles Clarkson May 12 '13 at 21:32
  • Thanks for the suggestion. I just tried it, but that didn't help either. – Nick5a1 May 13 '13 at 5:02
  • So I tried making a new FTP account, and I can now add plugins using this new account. However when I try to upgrade a plugin I get a Could not remove the old plugin. Plugin update failed. error. – Nick5a1 May 13 '13 at 21:50
  • To anyone with the same problem - I don't know what caused it, but I got my host to switch me over to FastCGI (which eliminates the need for correct file permissions and ownership) and it now works. – Nick5a1 May 14 '13 at 17:22
  • @Nick5a1 Please add your solution as an answer and accept it – shea May 16 '13 at 11:00