WordPress is considered the most powerful blogging and website content management system around at the moment. The software that powers WordPress is open source, which means that the code is created and updated by a community of developers from all around the world.
Whenever a new version of WordPress is released, security, performance and bug fixes are implemented, as well as innovative features. This means that it is imperative you download the latest version, otherwise, you risk making your site or blog vulnerable and also miss out on up to the minute developments.
As the code for WordPress is available to anyone, this, unfortunately, means that hackers can learn it to deliberately break websites. WordPress plugins can also be subject to exploitation, therefore, if you are using an old version of WordPress or an out of date plugin, then your site can be susceptible to the latest attacks.
The good news is that the WordPress security team and the wider worldwide WordPress community are continuously trying to find new vulnerabilities. This means that any issues can be fixed and updated quickly, so it is essential that you check that all areas of your site or blog are up to date.
By using the most recent version of WordPress, your site will run much faster.
Developers are constantly improving WordPress and plugin code by speeding up queries and scripts, therefore making them more efficient. This, in turn, will improve the performance of your site, which is an advantage for both you and your visitors.
The Latest Features
Each update of WordPress introduces new useful additions which you don’t want to miss out on.
For example, a recent update included better auto-saving and recovery, making it easier to retrieve old posts from browser backups. Another excellent feature is that plugins and themes are now much faster to install, saving you time.
As well as WordPress itself, don’t forget to also upgrade your site’s plugins and themes. You can keep all of these up to date from the updates screen, which you can find in the WordPress dashboard.
Remember, carrying out a little bit of work on an upgrade now could save you a lot of work fixing a larger, more complicated problem further down the line. Updating to the newest version of WordPress is crucial to the health and longevity of your site.
However, in particular, if you are fairly new to WordPress or a non-technical person, do not do your updates on a live site as this can go wrong and break your site, the best practice is to have a test site somewhere, update and test thoroughly there, and then replicate on the live site.