until today I ran EE 2.8.1 because I always avoid upgrading EE.

Now again I tried to upgrade to the newest 2.10.x. I have about 15 Modules installed (mostly commercial), which I had to update. I downloaded EE 2.10. I made backups. I renamed folders. I set file permissions. And then, finally, running the update-wizard, I was told that the PHP-version on my server is just 5.3.7.x, 5.3.10... would be required, please contact your hosting provider. Ok. Turning everything back. On Monday I am going to contact my provider.

Ok - the updating-instructions are good and detailed. Taking backups makes sense. File permissions have to be set. I could have checked the required PHP-version before

But always when upgrading it is required to make backups from everything, setting file-permission, renaming files, changing index.php and admin.php … This drives me crazy. Really.

Now my question is this: Is updating EE a pain in the '*$/%§ or am I just too sensible?

  • yes, it's a huge pain. especially because if you have version 30 or earlier, the CMS does not have an 'upgrade' button. you have to do everything manually.
    – ee sucks
    Apr 19, 2018 at 19:12

4 Answers 4


I wouldn't say it's a pain. It certainly should be a planned event though. There was a great podcast about this a few months ago over on the Ctrl+Click podcast. Check it out here: http://ctrlclickcast.com/episodes/upgrading-ee I've upgraded 100's of Wordpress sites many times and probably about 50 EE sites. Despite Wordpress having the one click update, I still cringe anytime I have to upgrade it. With one click, you are always rolling the dice, and trust me I've lost that battle many times. Even Drew Jaynes who just led up the 4.2 release said you're crazy if you don't upgrade your plugins, then deactivate them, backup your database, run the updater, then one by one reactivate plugins to test. So in reality, if we are doing it correctly, there's little to no difference.

A couple keys to remember (in any CMS) is to plan for upgrade. That means make sure any custom code you write isn't going to be affected by core updates (don't hack core), and use minimal plugins by people you know will support you and keep the plugins updates, backup.

Also, note that you don't have to copy files, rename, and change them back. I rarely do this. I just make sure I'm aware of what files I'm overwriting. I also use a git workflow though, so if mess it up, I just go back in time.


As a developer, I take on huge projects that span months to years with an incredible amount of engineering involved. I just upgraded a site with 500k weekly hits.

It wasn't the easiest thing ever, but compared to the very complex things a good developer is capable of, it was a walk in the park. I'm afraid it's one of the tiniest fish in the pond of hard tasks.

  • ok - compared to very complex things; but my frustration is the comparison to other cms. just look at wordpress (where you can reach the flexibility of EE only when sticking your fingers into the code) - it's one click.
    – BNetz
    May 9, 2015 at 8:14
  • 1
    Wordpress is not a commercial grade CMS solution. I don't mean any offense, and it can be a pain, it's just not that bad in my experience.
    – jrothafer
    May 9, 2015 at 20:00

If you're on EE3, the update process is much more manageable for two reasons:

  1. You only need to replace two directories as part of the update process. Ellis Lab did a better job of separating user files from core EE3 files.
  2. You can now check for add-on updates directly from the Control Panel.

Add-Ons view in EE3

  • Thanks, this is a good perspective (however, I did not upgrade to EE3 yet because some Addons are lacking).
    – BNetz
    Dec 14, 2016 at 18:50

IF you are following each step mentioned in upgrade doc it's worlds easiest task.

however it's a bit tough if you are not using a stable version currently or your EE current version is older than 2.7 .

in both these cases you will face some deprecated functions issues, but trust me these can be resolved easily.

but when you say you are using 2.8.1 it's pretty easy to upgrade into EE 2.10.1

  • 1
    Yes, it is not difficult - I agree. But it requires a lot of time to upgrade (backing up, renaming, directory-permissions etc.).
    – BNetz
    May 14, 2015 at 19:15
  • in this case you can user updater add-on May 15, 2015 at 8:56

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