Fix the “Another Update is Currently in Progress” Error in WordPress
It can be aggravating to try to figure out what’s causing the problem when WordPress breaks. It’s extremely aggravating when the problem persists for hours and prevents you from accessing a critical component of your website.
Are you experiencing an odd error on your Updates page that prevents you from updating WordPress core, theme, or plugins? This problem may cure itself in some cases, but if you’ve waited a long period and are still seeing this warning, it is unlikely to do so.
Let’s look at why this problem occurs and some solutions for getting your site back up and running.
Contents Table of Contents
Causes of the Update in Progress Error
The WordPress Update in Progress Error Can Be Fixed in Three Ways
The Update in Progress Error’s Causes
When your site is up and running, go to the Dashboard > Updates screen to see what version of WordPress you’re using. You can also update WordPress core, your theme, or any plugins you have installed.
Screen for WordPress Updates
However, if your site has just been changed, you may notice that when you try to update or reinstall anything, a brief notification appears: “We’re working on another update right now.”
This disables all of the page’s update buttons and prohibits you from doing anything else.
Progress bar for WordPress updates
This is really intended functionality to prevent you from accidently breaking your site while an update is downloading if you know you just run one.
If you didn’t initiate the update yourself, it may have been caused by the auto-update feature, or another user with high-level rights on your site could have done it.
While seeing this screen while an update is running is typical, it is not customary for it to remain there for hours on end.
WordPress locks your database on purpose, but the lock isn’t always released correctly. You could get stuck on the “Update in progress” screen endlessly if the update didn’t finish successfully due to a server connection hiccup or something else that went wrong.
It can be aggravating when WordPress goes down. This manual is intended to assist you.
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Why Do WordPress Core Updates Lock the Database?
So, what’s the deal with the unusual message? Why would WordPress do anything like this to prevent access to the updates screen?
When WordPress does a core update, it creates a database record to prevent any other updates (including plugin and theme updates) from running concurrently with the upgrade, which can take up to 15 minutes. Even if the update takes only 5 seconds to install, it will still be blocked for 15 minutes.
This is for a very excellent cause. If two separate sources update a database table at the same time, your site’s database may become corrupted, resulting in catastrophic data loss.
If you run a theme and a core update at the same time, for example, there’s a potential that both procedures will affect the same database table, bringing your entire site down.
This update lock protects your site and vital data from being corrupted by you or any other auto-update procedure.
As a result, it’s recommended that you wait 15 minutes before attempting to manually unlock the lock to perform a second update, as doing so could result in catastrophic consequences.
However, if you’ve been waiting for your Updates page to resolve itself and it still hasn’t, you’ll need to take manual action. (And, if the botched update broke anything, you might want to check out our guide to fixing database tables when you’re done.)
3 Ways To Fix the WordPress Update in Progress Error
It’s common to see the “update in progress” message for roughly 15 minutes after an update is started, so don’t make any database changes right away. However, if you’ve waited a while and are still receiving the problem, it’s definitely time to take more action.
Try one of these methods after waiting at least an hour since you first spotted the notification. Before updating back-end files, always make a backup of your database and your entire site, especially if you’re not comfortable with the process.
If none of these measures work or you’re not confident in your ability to fix it on your own, you may always contact your host for help.
Utilize a Plugin
Fixing this problem usually necessitates going through your database or using specialized developer tools like WP-CLI, but if you don’t want to risk breaking anything, there is a far simpler solution.
Another Update in Progress plugin has to be fixed.
Another update is currently being worked on.
Another Update for the Fix In Progress is a program that does exactly what it says on the tin. Despite the fact that it’s an older plugin that hasn’t been updated in a long time, current reviews show that it’s still functional (as seen by its 10k+ active installations).
Because there aren’t many other options, this is the greatest option in the WordPress repository. However, the developer no longer appears to support it, so use it at your own risk.
Log in and go to Plugins > Add New to install it. To install the plugin, look for “fix another update in progress” and click it.
You can also manually download the plugin and upload it from this page by clicking Upload Plugin.
When you activate it, a new menu called Fix Another Update In Progress will appear under Settings.
Getting to the Fix Another update is in the works.
This popup will appear if it finds a lock in your database. Simply click the Fix WordPress Update Lock button to get the database item removed immediately.
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Fix the WordPress Update Lock by clicking the Fix WordPress Update Lock button.
Fix the Update Lock button in WordPress
After that, you should be ready to go, and your “Updates” page should be functional once more. It’s not a good idea to keep unused plugins on your site, so uninstall it if you don’t notice the problem reappearing.
Make use of PhpMyAdmin.
Even if you’ve never touched your database before, this method is simple and safe as long as you don’t touch any crucial settings. Simply make a backup of your database before making any changes, and only delete the damaged row.
To begin, go to PhpMyAdmin and log in. Users of Kinsta can open MyKinsta and use its interface to access PhpMyAdmin. You can generally reach a different host using cPanel if you’re using one.
Using cPanel to access databases.
Open your site’s database and pick wp options from the left menu with many drop-downs.
Using cPanel to get to wp options
You should see a table of numerous database entries once you click through to wp options. It could be right there in the list, or your table could be far too big. If you can’t find it, use the Filter rows bar above the table to find it by typing “core updater.lock.”
Simply select the “core updater.lock” entry and click Delete.
The core updater.lock row has been removed.
After that, you can return to WordPress and adjust your site as needed.
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WP-CLI is a command-line interface for WordPress.
If interacting with your sensitive database makes you feel uneasy, or all those tables overwhelm you, there’s a quick and simple solution: WP-CLI.
This is the WordPress command-line interface, which allows you to interact with your database or other components of your site without having to go via cPanel or PhpMyAdmin manually. One line of code is all it takes to solve your problem.
WP-CLI is already installed on many WordPress hosting these days (including Kinsta), so you won’t have to conduct any complicated setup.
You should still back up your site before running the command line, just like you would if you were altering your database directly.
For more information, see how to connect to SSH, but here are the basics: Users of Windows will need to download and install a tool like PuTTY, but Mac and Linux users already have a Terminal installed.
Obtaining a copy of PuTTY
You’ll also need to obtain your host’s SSH credentials. You might be able to discover it under SSH Access in cPanel, or under the Info bar in MyKinsta for Kinsta users.
Install PuTTY on your Windows computer and enter your host’s hostname/IP, port, username, and password.
Users of Mac and Linux can simply open the Terminal and type the following command:
username@hostip -p portnumber ssh username@hostip
If prompted, enter your password.
You should now be able to enter commands into your server using PuTTY on Windows or the Terminal on Mac or Linux. Fill in the blanks:
delete core updater.lock wp option
Changing the command line’s parameters.
It’s a little tricky to get there, but with that one command, your issues are solved.
Are you encountering an issue that prevents you from updating WordPress core, themes, or plugins? Continue reading.
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When the “Another update in progress” error appears, it can be very aggravating. If you’re unable to update your site for days on end due to a little database mistake, it might generate a lot of uncertainty.
Fortunately, repairing it is an easy job. If you have access to WP-CLI or PhpMyAdmin, you may simply delete the lock to restore normalcy to your site. If you’re not sure how to do it, you can use a plugin to do it for you.
If nothing else seems to work, you may always contact your host and request that they erase the broken database entry for you.
Just remember to wait 15 minutes to an hour before attempting to remedy the issue, since it’s conceivable that it will correct itself before then. That database lock is there for a reason, and removing it before you’re supposed to can destroy your database.
WordPress issues are prevalent, and knowing what to do when they occur is helpful.
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