How I Upgraded from Thesis 1.5.1 to Thesis 1.7

by Abel Cheng on April 23, 2010

in Blogging

I was using Thesis 1.5.1 and I didn’t bother to upgrade it until today – as it was running smoothly before this with no hiccups. Why should I rock the boat?

But somehow, for some reason, I think it is now time for me to use Thesis 1.7 before I am being left out in the dust :-)

Before I talk about the upgrade, let me share with you some new features found in Thesis 1.7 first. Features that I like are:

  • You can do SEO optimization for every page and post individually – using the meta tag.
  • The new Home Page controls.
  • Cleaner and faster code.

Now back to upgrade. I did a Google search and found one nicely done article on upgrading Thesis 1.6 to Thesis 1.7, as well as from Thesis 1.5.x to Thesis 1.7. The latter was what I was looking for.

I just followed the instructions mentioned in the article:

  1. Repeating above information as a first and crucial step: Backup your site’s database and its web files, using whatever tools are provided by your web host, before the upgrade. It is not possible to just ‘click back’ to an earlier version of Thesis after the upgrade to 1.7 without the possibility of losing certain settings. This is why backups are vital. It’s your responsibility as a site owner to know how to create them, and how to restore them.
  2. Using your DIY Themes login info, access the Thesis Theme Download Area page. Click the link that says ‘Download Thesis 1.7 now.’
  3. The file thesis_17.zip should be on your local computer in the area where downloads normally go. Move thesis_17.zip to your desktop (unless it’s there already).
  4. Unzip the thesis_17.zip file to produce a folder named thesis_17.
  5. Open the thesis_17 folder that is on your local computer’s desktop to find inside the folder named custom-sample. Now delete the folder named custom-sample.
  6. Start your FTP client and access your web installation. Navigate through your web installation’s file structure until you can see the thesis_16 folder (which is located inside wp-content/themes). Open the thesis_16 folder to find the custom folder inside.
  7. Download that online custom folder (from your 1.6 installation) to your local computer, and place it into the thesis_1.7 folder (replacing the custom-sample folder that you deleted earlier).
  8. Use your FTP client to upload your thesis_1.7 folder into wp-content/themes on your server. (You will put the folder alongside your existing thesis_16 folder, the default theme folder, and the classic theme folder.)
  9. Follow the by-now familiar steps of opening the thesis_1.7 folder and then the custom folder, setting permissions for layout.css (to 666) and the cache folder (to 775). Log into WordPress and go to Appearances > Themes, then activate Thesis 1.7. (If you click ‘Preview’ first, you may see a Thesis site with no content. This is normal for Thesis in preview mode; pay it no mind and proceed to activate.)

As for upgrading from 1.5.x to 1.7:

So far as upgrading is concerned, the difference between 1.5.x and later editions of Thesis is that the later editions have layout.css and the rotator folder inside the custom folder. That’s it.

What this means for the upgrade process detailed above is that in Step 6, when you place your 1.5.x custom folder into the thesis_17 folder on your local computer, you must make sure to put your layout.css and the rotator folder inside of that custom folder. Apart from that extra half-a-step (call it Step 6.5, if you like), the upgrade process for 1.5.x –> 1.7 is the same as for 1.6 –> 1.7.

When I did a preview of 1.7 in WordPress Dashboard, I noticed the design was not as exactly as the old design. But I activated 1.7 anyway. When I checked out the live site (with 1.7 as the theme), it looked just fine. Phew!

The whole upgrade process was done in less than 20 minutes (including copying and checking).

Cool.

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