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Vanilla 2 Upgrading Tips

TimTim Lord of Servers Vanilla Staff
edited January 2011 in Questions
Upgrading software can often be frustrating and there are always ways to make things go more smoothly. I'm going to be compiling a list of tips and tricks for completing Vanilla upgrades (as discovered by you guys, our community) in this thread.

Start posting your ideas :)

Before you make any changes...


  1. Back up your database

  2. Back up your conf/config.php

The upgrade process


  1. If you can, instead of simply copying the new files over the old files, delete your original files first (everything except conf/, cache/, uploads/, custom themes/and custom plugins/ and *then* copy the news files. This will ensure that any files we've removed from Vanilla in the updated version will not stick around in your installation.

If you've just upgraded Vanilla 2...


  1. Delete all the .ini files in your cache/ folder

  2. Run the /utility/update database update script

/utility/update

Running /utility/updateis pretty simple, but we often find people getting extremely confused. I'm going to explain how Vanilla URLs work here. Please read carefully.

If you're reading this, your browser's address bar has the following in it:
http://www.vanillaforums.org/discussion/12740/vanilla-2-upgrading-tips

Lets break that URL into its constituent parts

The Scheme:
http://
It should be pretty obvious what this is.

The Domain:
www.vanillaforums.org
This is the domain on which your forum is installed.

The Webroot:
http://www.vanillaforums.org/
This is the hardest one to understand. On vanillaforums.org, we've installed the forum at the topmost level of the web server's document root, so there are no additional folders in the URL. Lets say, however, that we installed Vanilla into a subfolder on our web server, and lets say we called that folder "myforum/". Now the web root would be: http://www.vanillaforums.org/myforum/. Basically, when in doubt, the web root is the shortest URL that gets you to the discussions list.

The Path:
discussion/12740/vanilla-2-upgrading-tips
This is the "request" that Vanilla is processing for you. In this case, if we converted the path to pseudo English, it would sound something like: "give me the discussion with id number 12740". The title part is optional, and is only there to make links look nicer and to improve user experience and search engine optimization.

Now, back to our instructions for accessing "/utility/update"

"Navigate to the page in your forum that updates your database (this will not work if you did not sign in as UserID = 1): www.yourdomain.com/path/to/vanilla/utility/update"

"Navigate to the page in your forum" - This tells us to start with the Webroot. Cool, so right now our URL looks like this:
http://www.vanillaforums.org/

"that updates your database" - This is filler text, ignore it. It simply describes the page you are about to visit. URL still looks the same as before:
http://www.vanillaforums.org/

"(this will not work if you did not sign in as UserID = 1)" - This tells us to be logged in as the ORIGINAL CREATOR ACCOUNT of the forum. This is the user your created DURING THE INSTALL PROCESS. URL still looks the same, but we should now be logged in as the primary admin.
http://www.vanillaforums.org/

"www.yourdomain.com/path/to/vanilla/" - This is a common way of specifying URLs whose beginning is unknown to the writer. When we write "/path/to" it is a way of saying "the fully qualified path to ". This is basically a reiteration of the first part, where we say "Navigate to the page in your forum". URL stays the same.
http://www.vanillaforums.org/

"utility/update" - And now we just tack this on the end of our URL:
http://www.vanillaforums.org/utility/update

And that's it! If you did everything correctly, you should get a page that says "Success"!

Vanilla Forums Senior Developer [GitHub, Twitter, About.me]

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