Zit Seng's Blog

A Singaporean's technology and lifestyle blog

Upgrading to WordPress 2.8

photo-21WordPress version 2.8 has been released. I decided to revisit the issue of automatic core updates which had not been working for me previously. The automatic update simply means that you can upgrade the core WordPress software through the admin interface (i.e. through the web browser), without having to manually download the archive file, upload to the WordPress hosting server, etc.

This automatic update is also how plugins are upgraded in WordPress. Plugin upgrades work for me. But the core updates don’t. I get an error message like: “Download failed.: Operation timed out with…”

I thought about file permissions, but that was not the case.

In the end, it turned out to be a silly problem. The WordPress developers think that everyone has a super fast Internet connection to download the archive. There is a timeout setting of 30 seconds fixed in the code. If the download takes more than 30 seconds, the operation aborts.

Well, it turns out 30 seconds really wasn’t enough time for me to get the WordPress archive file. The fix is relatively simple, and has been documented by many others (such as here).

  1. Open up the file “wp-admin/includes/file.php”.
  2. Look for the line: “$response = wp_remote_get($url, array(‘timeout’ => 30));”.
  3. Change the 30 to something larger, like 90 seconds, for example.
  4. Save the file, then retry the automatic update.

Yeah, Internet access from Singapore isn’t fast enough.

Now, the ZitSeng.com site is running WordPress 2.8. I don’t know what the 790 bug fixes and 180 new features are. I don’t yet see any changes in the course of writing up this post. Maybe I’ll poke around a little later. I’ve heard there are some improvements with the widget administration interface. That’s cool. But I don’t know anything about user-facing features, such as comment threading that appeared in 2.7.x.

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