Wordpress 2.8 was released a few months ago and I've been putting off updating my site. When things are working well, especially software programs, then why update? Recently a user reported that my Portfolio galleries were not displaying the individual images properly. I checked on the Wordpress.org forums and started reading about these horror stories of hackers hijacking your Wordpress site and bringing it down. Supposedly the new release was more secure in addition to several other improvements. Since I am hosting Wordpress on a server, I first had to back up the site, which meant making a copy of all the files on the server and exporting a copy of the SQL database that held all of the site's content. Having never done this before I consulted with the documentation on the Wordpress Codex and found it to be remarkably complete and simple. I also had to update several plugins that I use (NextGen Gallery, Widget Logic). After backing everything up, the updates area a matter of pressing one button and that was it, or so I thought.
The first problem resulted from many of the widget settings being lost. Make sure you copy down (with a pen on paper) your settings because these get wiped. Wish someone had told me that. Also I noticed that the sort function on the NextGen Gallery was not working, which really stinks because there is no way to order any new images in the galleries. Again the support forums revealed that several other users were experiencing this problem after upgrading, but it was basically unresolved. I fussed with it for about 2 hours and gave up. The next morning I updated a widget that I was not using and then noticed that the sort was working! Whether this really fixed the problem or whether the software spirits decided to have pity on me I will never know.
I have yet to update my Wordpress Theme which also has a new version...I'll leave that until next weekend. Until then all seems to be working well. At least I feel better that my site has a backup and I'm safe from the hackers (at least for now).