Importance of website upgrades and things to keep in mind whilst the up-gradation process:
Upgrades are always good to go for due to several important factors for your website or app product.
Reasons you should go for an upgrade for your website
- Bugs Fixed: The very first reason to go for the version upgrade is to overcome the loopholes of the older version which could be critical to many factors for your website such as the speed, security or any other issues that might not be good for SEO too.
- Latest Trendy Functionalities: Version upgrades might not only fix the bugs but could also be for the structural changes and enhancements in the current features / functionalities followed by the latest trends.
- Easy to Manage: If you do not upgrade your version then after some time your site modules/components/features becomes obsolete and you do not get support for them which becomes critical to manage and code. But if you follow the latest technology and upgrades of your website version, it will become very easy for the website administrator to manage and maintain your website.
Before you go for the upgradation:
You need to take care of a few things before you upgrade the version of your website to prevent the data loss.
There are two types of upgrades for your website:
- Website version upgrade
- Modules/Plugins/Components upgrades
Version upgrade updates the framework code and data structure which could be possibly for new feature updates, enhancement of the current admin side functionalities, security or performance updates for your website.
Modules/Plugins/Components also have their unique updates to maintain their code compatible to the latest version upgrades of the website framework.
To make it easier for you to understand, let us consider an example of the website built using the very old Joomla Framework 1.0 which is the very first version of the Joomla Content Management System with basic and limited CMS features. Gradually, Joomla has updated its versions which mean updated their code library and database structure to make the Joomla CMS more efficient, user-friendly, robust, optimized and trendy. Now, the latest Joomla version is Joomla 3.4.8.
Assuming you want to update the Joomla 1.0 built site to Joomla 3.4.8, so how come data loss come into the picture?
As explained earlier, the version upgrades might have changes in their core library and data structure and your used modules/components/plugins might not be compatible according to the latest version upgrades. In this case, some of the data fields which are there in the older version possibly not there in the latest version or vice versa and your website data to those particular fields can vanish during upgradation process.
Steps to follow to upgrade your website version:
- Identify the current version of your website framework
- Identify the latest version for your website framework in which you want to upgrade your website
- Identify the plugins/components used in the current version and verify that all those are compatible to the latest framework in which you are going to upgrade the website. In case you do not find the compatible version for any of the plugins, you need to go for the custom coding to let the plugin perform the same way as the older version.
- Take the backup of your current site database
- Follow the migration steps differently available for various frameworks/technologies.