WordPress Updates

WordPress is a great content management system with a lot of great features to it. However, like any other CMS on the market there are security risks with it. It’s fairly easy to stave off a lot of the issues by simply keeping everything up to date. When you are running these updates, you need to be sure to practice one skill that many of us are not too good at – patience.

I blogged about some basic security for WordPress a few weeks ago, but one thing I didn’t mention was the need to stay on that page until the updates are fully installed. When they are completed, you’ll see a line that says “All updates have been completed” and will have two links under that for “Return to Plugins/Themes page” and “Return to WordPress Updates page.” Once you see that confirmation you are OK to move on to another page.

The reason you need to be patient and remain on that updates page is that while the updates are running, the system will go into a maintenance mode. If you leave that updates page while the site is still in that maintenance mode, your site will become unavailable to all users and will only say “Briefly unavailable for scheduled maintenance. Check back in a minute.” If you get this message you will likely need to contact your web developer and have them fix the issue by simply deleting the .maintenance file.

Most updates only take about 30 seconds to run. Simply be patient and wait until the page says “All updates have been completed” and then you can continue with any other work you needed to do in the system. Patience is a virtue in many facets of life, with WordPress updates, it can be the difference between your updates being installed properly and you site being locked in maintenance mode.

Basic Security for WordPress

As with any content management system (CMS) available today, there are some security risks that need to be accounted for with WordPress. Thankfully, it’s actually very easy – using a secure password and keeping the system and plugins updated.

As with any online account, it’s very important to use a strong password. It’s also highly recommended to update your password every month or so. Most online accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Netflix, etc) will usually provide an indication of how strong your password is. Even with that indicator, it’s always a good idea to make sure to follow these basic rules:

  1. 10+ character long
  2. Include capital and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols (*,!,&, etc)
  3. Avoid using your childrens or pets names (to many people know what those names are)

The second things to do to keep WordPress as secure as possible is to make sure you are always running the latest version of the software – both for WordPress and any plugins/themes you have installed. In WordPress, it is very easy to manage upgrades. You’ll see a link labeled Updates whenever there are updates to be done, and then simply follow that link and select which updates you’d like to make and click the Update button. The updates will automatically be installed and any database changes will be made.

WordPress is a great CMS to use and provides countless benefits to it’s users. Like any CMS available, though, security is always an issue and concern. To keep your site safe, keep your passwords strong and keep the system up to date.