Fixing comments and other problems after upgrading

One of the problems with upgrading is that you find all sorts of problems both before and after the upgrade. The “before” problems were maybe those things you were going to get to, when you had a moment, but never did. The “after” problems were combinations of issues incurred during the upgrade, and a few of the “before” problems you didn’t notice, or didn’t address properly before doing the upgrade. In my case, there weren’t too many problems, but there were some. Considering this was only a maintenance upgrade, and that I was upgrading for the better part of a year, these problems could have been avoided.
“Before” problems:

  • I wasn’t backing up my database (shame on me)
  • I was heavily customizing my scripts for added functionality without considering forward-compatibility
  • I didn’t check for a newer version before upgrading
  • I didn’t upgrade to 4.x, like I could have, out of fear that things would get broken
  • I didn’t read the upgrade docs (double shame on me)
  • turns out I had a very cool spam keyword filter plugin I wasn’t even using
  • I had two other awesome spam plugins I was using, but didn’t know about

“After” problems:

  • reCAPTCHA code required some script customization
  • some of the plugins I wanted, which required upgrading in the first place, weren’t free, or weren’t available anymore
  • slight learning curve on new interface, which I wasn’t expecting, this being a maintenance upgrade
  • slight problems with new interface on my browsers, requiring some script and template modification
  • new location for static images was required
  • new location for customized templates was introduced to allow for forward-compatibility
  • upgrade disabled spam filtering and reCAPTCHA, so I was flooded with spam the instant I upgraded

Sure, most of these are trivial, but there may be some that I haven’t found yet. But finding one or two problems really got me looking at and improving my system as a whole (i.e. the database gets backed-up nightly), and I’ve gotten absolutely no spam since re-enabling the filters. I was also able to get at one or two really nit-picky things I’ve been thinking about fixing for a while, such as setting a default image upload location for guest bloggers, and for my lazy self.
Now to start planning my 4.x upgrade, so I can get at some of those cool new features.