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How to easily update your WHMCS installation

In the last versions, WHMCS introduced the automatic updates feature. With this, you can have your installation automatically updated to the latest version with just a few clicks. Notice that it doesn’t automatically update itself like WordPress for example.

Before starting any WHMCS update we recommend to backup your installation/web hosting account.
Unless it’s a security update, we recommend waiting a few days before applying any update. This is to allow any bugs to be fixed.

When an update is available(in our example case from WHMCS 7.4.2 to WHMCS 7.5.0) you will see notifications in many places. In Help->System Health Status, for example, you will see:

whmcs system health status

To update WHMCS go to Utilities->Update WHMCS. You must re-enter the password to continue (You are entering an administrative area of WHMCS and must confirm your password to continue.):

whmcs update password

Here you will see the Update WHMCS screen. You can see that an update is available and any issues found on the server. In our example, you can see that there is an issue, and an update can’t be performed due to the ionCube Loader – Unable to Perform Automatic Updates Your system has ionCube Loader 6.1.0. Please install ionCube Loader 10.1.0 or higher to update to WHMCS Version 7.5.0. Learn More. You must fix any issues before continuing. 

whmcs update

Also here you can set the Update settings. Just click the Configure Update Settings button.

whmcs update settings

The update settings window will open where you can set:

  1. the update channel, as:
    Stable – recommended for production use
    Release Candidate – almost stable, stable will come very soon
    Beta – only for testing
    Current Version – you will receive only maintenance update for the current version, no major updates
  2. temporary path used by the update utility – as suggested, use a directory outside the public root directory.
  3. maintenance message – the message that users will see during the update process. Use something like: Maintenance in progress. Thank you.

To begin the installation, click the Update Now button.

whmcs update 1

Notice the WHMS warning: Before proceeding, please make a backup of your WHMCS installation. We recommend backing up both your files and database.

Click the Continue button. If you have any customized files, WHMCS will let you know. 

whmcs update 2

Click Continue button. Everything is fine and the update is ready to begin. 

whmcs update 3

Click the Begin Update button. You will see the update process as:

whmcs update 4

Notice the warning message: Please do not navigate away from this page or close your browser. You will be redirected automatically once complete.

After a few minutes (depending on your web hosting server load) the update will end with a message:  The update was successful!

whmcs update 5

More details about the WHMCS installation/upgrade can be found at https://docs.whmcs.com/Installing_WHMCS
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Not all files showing in FTP client

You have a lot of files (thousands or millions) in a directory and your FTP client do not show all of them? Find out that the issue has nothing to do with your FTP client.
The FTP server is the one that decides how many files to show.

For example for pure-ftp (a very popular FTP server for cPanel servers) the limit is 10000. You can modify this value anytime according to your needs by editing the file /etc/pure-ftpd.conf and set the maximum number of files to be displayed:

# 'ls' recursion limits. The first argument is the maximum number of
# files to be displayed. The second one is the max subdirectories depth

LimitRecursion 10000 8

Don’t forget to restart the FTP server (in our case for pure-ftp server):

root@web [~]# service pure-ftpd restart
If you want to see more files in the FTP client and you don’t have root access, you should contact your host.
Notice that for large number of files, the FTP client will take some time to list all of them.
The number of files you will effectively see is the number in the ftp server configuration-2. In Unix systems all directories contain two special entries . (directory itself) and .. (for parent directory).
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View hidden files in FileZilla

There are many articles online related to this FileZilla Option: Server->Force showing hidden files

filezilla show hidden files

Notice that this option is deprecated (it uses the LIST -a command which is deprecated). On nowadays FTP servers this option has no effect. Modern servers use MLSD command for directory listings. So if the server knows this command, FileZilla (and other FTP clients) will use it by default.

As a client, you can’t tell to a server that is using MLSD command to show hidden files. 
So, if you can’t see hidden files in your FTP client (files like .htaccess etc.), you should contact your host and ask for help.

Related KB article: Use FileZilla to connect via FTP to your web hosting account

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Use Total Commander to connect to an FTP account

Total Commander is a very popular Windows File Manager. It also has a built-in FTP client.

total commander ftp

You can download Total Commander from https://www.ghisler.com

Method 1 – quick connection:

  1. Go to Net->FTP New Connection… (or CTRL+N)
  2. Enter your FTP server address (like domain.com or simply the IP) . Uncheck the anonymous connection option. Most FTP servers don’t allow such connections. Click the OK button.
  3. Enter the User name in the new window. Click the OK button.
  4. Enter the Password in the next window. Click the OK button.
  5. You are now connected to the FTP server and you will see the remote account content.

Method 2 – create and save a new connection:

  1.  Go to Net->FTP Connect… (or CTRL+F)
  2. Click the New connection... button.
  3.  Here, enter:
    Session name (any name you want to easy remember this connection, it can be the server address for example)
    Host name – the FTP server address – like ftp.domain.com or IP
    User name – the FTP account username
    Password – the FTP account password

    We strongly suggest to enable the option Use master password to protect the password !

    Click the OK button.

  4. You will see a warning window related to the master password : If you forget the master password, there will be NO way (not even for us) to get your encrypted passwords! We recommend that you write down the password on a sheet of paper, and store it in a SAFE place, e.g. in your wallet/purse or in a safe.
    Click the Yes button.
  5. On the next two windows enter the master password and click OK.
  6. You will see your new created FTP connection in the list. Click on it and then click the Connect button.
  7. You are now connected and the content of the FTP account is displayed in one Total Commander tab.

The short movie tutorial for this KB post:

 
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Use Windows File Explorer to connect to your FTP account

Windows File Explorer is the default file manager in Windows 10. Many persons don’t know that File Explorer can also be used as a FTP Manager.

The File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used for the transfer of computer files between a client and server on a computer network.

To connect to your web hosting account via FTP with File Explorer:

    1.  Open Windows File Explorer (or My Computer in previous Windows versions)
    2.  In the top address bar type your server address – like ftp://domainname.com or ftp://IP and press the Enter key or click the Go button from the right side.
      file explorer url
    3. Enter the username and the password for your FTP account and click the Log On button. 
      ftp file explorer login
    4. Connection will be established and you will see the contents of your account.
      file explorer ftp
    5. When you finish working with the remote files, just close the File Explorer window.
Notice that most of the FTP servers don’t accept the anonymously connection, so don’t check the Log on anonymously option.

The movie tutorial for this post:

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