Although it is best to to keep WordPress updated to its latest edition, occasionally minor complications make it necessary to at least temporarily downgrade in order for it to function.
Some time ago, I ran into one such minor issue. After I had upgraded, I could no longer edit or write any posts. So it obviously clashed with my theme, my plugins, or something. I don’t know. But it did not please me and I could get no work done. So I had to downgrade to the previous version of WordPress.
In today’s post, I’m going to lead you through a quick tutorial on just how to downgrade your edition of self-hosted WordPress should you ever run into a need to do so. Please read through each step and CAREFULLY abide by each.
What You Need
- An FTP client such as FileZilla (when downloading FileZilla, just be careful to not install any of the annoying “extras” that might accompany it).
- A past edition of WordPress (newest versions are towards the very bottom of the first list).
What You Do
- Login to your FTP client. For FileZilla, you place your website URL (sans the http://) beside “Host,” the username you use to login to your web host beside “Username,” and your web host password beside “Password” then click on “Quick Connect.”
- Backup your wp-admin and wp-includes folder to your computer. Simply download them to you computer and you’re good. If you want to be extra safe, you can backup your entire website.
- Unzip the past edition of WordPress you want to reinstall. To do this, right click on the zipped file and select “Extract All…” (which may vary based on what computer you are using).
- Open the freshly unzipped file and delete its wp-content folder (NOT the one in the FTP client). This is important because you do NOT want to replace the wp-content folder you already have in your FTP client else you’ll lose everything important!
- Upload all the files of the unzipped WordPress downgrade folder (sans its wp-content folder) into your FTP client.
- Login to WordPress.
- A screen that says “Database Update Required” will pop up. Click on the “Update WordPress Database” button (it think you’re updating, but in reality you’re, um…downdating…).
- Once is has successfully downgraded, the “Update Complete” screen pops up. Click on “Continue” and you have successfully downgraded WordPress!
And there you have it! This process took me about 10 minutes to do.
Now keep an eye out for when WordPress releases its next update so you can then attempt to upgrade again (and hopefully all the kinks have been ironed out by then). It’s always best to keep WordPress current to prevent from getting hacked.