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Upgrading Simple Machines SMF Forum Tutorial

Upgrading SMF forum board is a simple process, we have out line the detail steps to perform an upgrade to your SMF forum board, follow the steps closely and you should have your forum updated within minutes.

Backup your forum and mysql database

Before doing anything, you should make a backup of your SMF forum program folder, you can FTP download the entire SMF program folder to your computer as a backup. Also, you should backup your mysql database, both the backup allows you to restore quickly to previous working condition should anything happen during the upgrade process.

Preparing for Forum upgrade

After backups are done, you can proceed on to prepare the new SMF files :-

  1. Visit Simple Machines Forum official site and download the SMF upgrade compressed file
  2. Uncompress the file in your computer and FTP upload to your hosting account, overwrite the old SMF files in your hosting account with these new files
  3. Check and make sure permissions for the following files / folders are set to (CHMOD 777)
    • attachments
    • avatars
    • Packages
    • Packages/installed.list
    • Smileys
    • Themes
    • Themes/default/languages/Install.english.php
    • agreement.txt
    • Settings.php
    • Settings_bak.php
    • install.php

    Some of these permissions may have already set during the initial forum installation.

Running the upgrade script

Once you have prepared the new SMF files in your SMF program folder, you can start the upgrade :-

  1. Enter the URL to the upgrade script in your browser http://www.yourdomain.com/forum/upgrade.php
  2. There will be a form with the following options :-

    • Backup database with prefix "backup_yourprefix_".
      Checked this box and the SMF upgrade program will backup a copy of your original forum database before making any changes
    • Put the Forum into maintenance mode during upgrade
      checked this box, this will disable your forum from visitors while performing the upgrade, this is needed to ensure database integrity during the upgrade
    • Output extra debugging information
      Checked this box will instruct the upgrade program to list out more info during the upgrade, this is useful for debugging purposes

  3. click Continue when you have all the options set, upgrade program will then start performing the necessary upgrades to your database and program files, this may take a while so be patience while watching the status screen
  4. If everything is entered properly, you should be seeing successful status, otherwise check the error messages and act accordingly
  5. When the upgrade process completed, make sure to remove the upgrade.php file from your SMF program folder, this is important as the leaving the script there may post security risks