Upgrade DNN 9.0.1 to 9.3.2


This help article will show you how to successfully upgrade a DNN instance running on a OpenHost environment from 9.0.1 to 9.3.2. It will cover the the things you need, tasks to step through and likely issues you will face.

Things you need
  1. A PC with FileZilla installed - you can download this from the FileZilla Project website
  2. FTP access set up on your OpenHost account - learn how to connect by reading the OpenHost FTP help article
  3. Download the DNN 9.3.2 upgrade package on your PC to a folder called called "DNN 9.3.2 upgrade" - Get the file from the DNN GitHub site - at the very bottom of the page is a list of assets, be sure to select the file ending ..upgrade.zip
  4. An installation of 7zip from the 7zip website
Upgrade steps
  1. Backup your website - Log in to your OpenHost account and select the site you are upgrading, select Tools → More Tools → Open to display the Plesk console. Select Backup Manager top right of screen then click Back Up on the grey toolbar - if you dont have a full backup already then select this type otherwise incramental is ok. Keep all other settings as default and kick off the process by clicking OK. If anything goes wrong with the upgrade process you can come back here to do a restore.
  2. Set up a new folder called httpdocs inside "DNN 9.3.2 upgrade" folder created earlier.
  3. Configure FileZilla - Open FileZilla and configure the server connection using credentials created earlier - On the advanced tab, set the default local and remote directories to httpdocs and check both Synchronised Browsing and Directory Comparison. Connect to the OpenHost server.
  4. Clone website files - On the FileZilla right panel (remote server files) select all → right click → download to create a copy of the server files to your local PC.
  5. Prepare upgrade files - Browse to the downloaded upgrade .zip file on your PC and right click to select Properties. At the very bottom of the general tab, tick the Unblock checkbox.
  6. Right click the .zip file again and hover on the 7zip menu and select extract to "DNN 9.3.2 upgrade".
  7. Open the unzipped folder and select all files, copy to clipboard - browse back to the local httpdocs folder and paste the upgrade files using the 'Replace destination files' selection when prompted.
  8. Take the site offline - In the FileZilla console left side local, find the app_offline.htm.old file → right click → Rename by removing the .old → right click → Upload. Your site should now be displaying an outage notice.
  9. Upload new codebase - In FileZilla, select all local files in httpdocs on the left side → right click → upload, selecting "Overwrite" when prompetd. This will take some time so go make a cup of tea!
  10. Bring site online - Once all files are uploaded, find and delete the app_offline.htm file.
  11. Initiate the upgrade process - In your browser navigate to https://yoursitename.com/install/install.aspx?mode=upgrade and note any errors that occur.
  12. 500 Server error - This is the common issue with this upgrade, especiallly if you are using Mandeeps modules. You can confirm the issue by looking at the full URL of the 500 error page which will include a message like "Could not load file or assembly Newtonsoft.Json Version" To rectify this, Open the Plex console File Manager and open the web.config file. Search for NewtonSoft and you will likely see two entries for this assembly, probably around line 368. There should only be one entry so comment out the first one (contains newVersion="") and replace the second with the code below

                <assemblyIdentity name="Newtonsoft.Json" publicKeyToken="30ad4fe6b2a6aeed" />
                <bindingRedirect oldVersion="" newVersion="" />
  13. Testing - Log in as host and check to see that the Persona Bar loads correctly - also open a page in edit mode to make sure that all module editing options are available - sometimes local and server caches need to be cleared otherwise you are all good to go.
  14. Delete local files - to save any confusion during the next upgrade, delete all the files in the local httpdocs folder.

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