What is the recommended practice for the WordPress updates? Should I be installing them as they become available?
This is a great question and below is my general recommendation:
- Small point upgrades (3.0 to 3.0.1 to 3.0.2, etc) should be applied almost immediately. They usually don’t break anything and are security/bug patches.
- For medium point upgrades (3.0.x to 3.1 to 3.2), themes and plugins might have conflicts. I usually like to do these immediately but make sure to have a backup that you can revert to almost immediately if something breaks.
- For full version upgrades, 3.x to 4.0, upgrade should be done relatively soon. I usually like to wait for some reports to come out giving a green light or a red light. Sometimes it’s wise to wait for the x.0.1 or x.0.2 patches to upgrade. Historically speaking, full version upgrades have a tendency to break plugins and/or themes so it’s wise to be 100% sure you have a backup copy of your site before upgrading.