How to Upgrade your Magento Installation

One of most important aspects of maintaining a Magento e-commerce website is keeping it up to date. Not only does updating allow you to implement new and improved features, but it also shores up any security threats that are discovered and also implements bug fixes. Unfortunately, most Magento websites that we see come in from outside developers or are run by do-it-yourselfers have never been updated, not even for the most important security patches. In the following guide we are going walk you through one method of updating your current Magento installation.

Step 1. Backup your MySQL database and all the website files.

Step 2. Open up your web browser. If your Magento is installed in the root directory navigate to:

Or, if it is installed in a different directory, navigate to the Magento installation directory


Step 3. Update all the extensions you have installed via the Magento Connect. Under Install New Extensions, paste the following in Paste extension key to install. 

Magento paste extension key to update e-commerce extensions

Click Install
You will have to repeat this once for each extension that was downloaded via the Magento Connect.

Step 4. Potentially, you will encounter the following error:

CONNECT ERROR: Package ‘Mage_All_Latest’ is invalid

If this occurs, navigate to downloader\lib\Mage\Connect\Validator.php and comment out the following code:

Step 5.  Update all core packages by clicking Check for Upgrades
Under actions, upgrade to the highest version of the package marked as (stable)
Click Commit Changes

Check Magento core updates for the e-commerce platform

Step 6. After all the packages have been upgraded, navigate to your Magento Installation and delete the var/cache and var/session folders.

Step 7. Try loading the website. You will probably encounter a “500 Internal Server Error”. To correct this, set the file and folder permissions correctly. Detailed instructions and an easy Magento Cleanup Tool can be found at the following URL:

Step 8. If you encounter a Service Temporarily Unavailable error, and you should if you encountered a 500 Internal Server Error on the previous step, in your FTP or via SSH navigate to the root directory and delete the file maintenance.flag

Step 9. Load your website.

Hans-Eirik Hanifl

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Hans-Eirik Hanifl is a forward thinking e-commerce and marketing consultant. As an advocate for the free exchange of knowledge, he founded E-Commerce Gorilla as a place where like-minded individuals can ask questions and share their expertise on practical solutions in the area of e-commerce and marketing. He is the owner of TRM Marketing and an avid supporter of the open source community.

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