WordPress Updates via SVN

I’ve got 4 installs of WordPress running various sites of mine, and I plan to migrate a few other sites to a WP backend at some point as well. This becomes a bit of a maintenence nightmare when I need to do upgrades or apply patches. Because of this, I’m considering doing an SVN checkout of WP on each site to make them easier to maintain.

The only issue is that I’ve got a few places in the WP core that I’ve customized for some of the sites – I’d potentially have to re-apply these patches and resolve any conflicts on each update. It wouldn’t be that big a deal though:

  • alexking.org – I’d need to apply my patch to not require unique post slugs and I’d need to redo some of my site structure sincce I’ve got stuff hanging around from the b2 days.
  • kingdesign.net – the unique post slugs issue and I hacked the search function to return “pages” as well as posts in the search results. If this isn’t standard in 2.0 (haven’t checked) I’d need to apply those changes.
  • feedlounge.com – the new roles system should allow me to drop my hack to allow Scott and I to view and edit each other’s posts. Then it would just be a matter of the unique post slugs and search results.

I think that re-applying these patches to the latest from SVN would be easier in the long run than updating each install individually.

I guess I really want a process like this:

  1. Update WP to latest from WP’s SVN repository
  2. Check my mods and fix any issues
  3. Test and commit to my respository
  4. Update on production sites

I don’t know how to do this with SVN, though perhaps there is a way. Maybe the right way to do this is to get latest, make my changes, then create a patch. Then update the production sites to the latest from WP’s SVN and apply my patch.

When you work by yourself most of the time, the simplest parts of source control (branch, merge) are all you generally need. One thing I miss about working in a BigCo is absorbing this kind of knowledge by necessity without having to track it down. 🙂