Well that was a big bucket of non-stop fun.
I just upgraded Movable Type to version 3.2, which is the blogging software that runs this site. To put it bluntly, the upgrade process sucks ass. After spending hours on two crash-and-burn installs (thank the maker for backups!), I was about to give up. But then I read some forum commentary about NOT upgrading the installation, but instead creating a NEW installation in a NEW folder.
Piece of cake.
How incredibly stupid that SixApart doesn't have this bit of wisdom in their docs, because it would have saved me a lot of wasted time. For anybody wanting to "upgrade" to MT 3.2, here's what worked for me...
- BACKUP YOUR FILES! It is particularly important that you backup your MT database if you use one. I am not joking here... if I hadn't backed up my stuff, Blogography would be totally hosed right now. Don't even think about skipping this step.
- Create a brand new folder and upload all the MT 3.2 files to it. Don't forget to adjust permissions of the CGI scripts as listed in the docs!
- Copy over your unique plug-ins, skipping the included plug-ins (like "nofollow") which have all been upgraded. MT-Blacklist is no longer used, so don't worry about that one. Also, if you have customized search templates, don't forget to copy them to the new install as well.
- Rename the "mt-config.cgi-original" configuration file to "mt-config.cgi" and then make all necessary changes so that your settings are correct. Refer to your original, if needed, and note that if you are using a database you have to add the password here now.
- Go to the new URL of the "mt.cgi" file with your web browser, then wait for MT to upgrade your old installation. If you use blogging software (like the brilliant "ecto"), be sure to edit the path to reflect the new location.
- After a successful upgrade, be sure to change the permissions of the "mt-config.cgi" and "mt-upgrade.cgi" files so that they are not executable (644).
- Do an archive back-up of your original MT installation, then delete it. Test everything on the new install thoroughly. If you forgot something, you can always go back to that archive. Some MT users are even suggesting leaving the old install intact, but just stripping permissions from the scripts... whatever works for you.
I have no idea why I couldn't get an overwrite-upgrade to work, yet a new installation performs flawlessly. It's strange to think about how close I was to switching to WordPress or B2Evolution... I had downloaded both packages and was ready to get started when I thought to visit the MT forums and find a solution that worked. In the end, I'm somewhat furious that the above method isn't the one given in the MT docs, because it was so incredibly painless, quick, and easy.
As for MT 3.2 itself... well, there's not much I can comment on yet. I upgraded not because there were new features I was dying to have, but because I like to stay current. A few things I've noticed...
- The Creative Commons license badge selection finally works now, allowing me to display the revised and updated badge on my pages.
- Comments and TrackBacks are now moderated much better. You have the option of filtering to only "unpublished" items, which is sweet... I found out I had three comments that I never published!
- The working interface of the system is much more informative. This eliminates "digging" to find info you need, since more stuff is displayed up-front.
- There's new template tags that I am very excited about, because they will simplify things and allow me to eliminate a few plug-ins. Of course, now I will have to find the time to study the docs and actually create the templates, but at least they're there when I'm ready.
Still no way that I can find to perform bulk-actions on entries and comments and such. I would like to disable TrackBacks on every entry, but the idea of manually opening 1000 entries and disabling them is lame. There's probably a plug-in or script for this, so I'll have to check.
UPDATE: Well, well, well... there is an option to disable all comments or all TrackBacks (or both) in the "System-Wide Settings" panel. Very cool.
And now that I'm back home, it's time to answer email and get caught up with the world...