Did you notice a rather weird update of your WordPress yesterday?
Was your WordPress installation suddenly updated to WordPress alpha version 5.5.3-alpha-49449?
It was all due to an incorrect update of WordPress to version 5.5.2 on October 29, 2020.
A bug in WordPress version 5.5.2 caused WordPress to auto-update to an alpha version of WordPress and several other tedious things.
WordPress is now fixed again.
Emergency update released yesterday
The WordPress core team had to release WordPress version 5.5.3 yesterday, October 30, 2020, which is an emergency update to the WordPress 5.5.2, that was released the day before October 29, 2020.
The emergency update was released to remedy a problem in WordPress 5.5.2 that, among other things, made it impossible to install WordPress on a new site without a database connection configured.
Unannounced update to alpha version 5.5.3-alpha-49449
At the same time, an error caused some WordPress sites to be incorrectly updated to version 5.5.3-alpha.
According to the release notes from wordpress.org, the WordPress automatic update system yesterday, October 30, updated some sites from version 5.5.2 to alpha version 5.5.3-alpha.
The problem occurred when the WordPress Core team disabled downloading the WordPress version 5.5.2 release in an attempt to prevent new users from using this version.
By disabling download of 5.5.2, wordpress.org API returned alpha version 5.5.3-alpha-49449 as the version that WordPress had to update to.
The core team’s analysis of the 5.5.3-alpha-49449 release found only a very small difference between the WordPress 5.5.2 release and the WordPress 5.5.3-alpha-49449 because much of the core functionality is the same.
There have been no reports of loss of either functionality or data due to the error.
However, the automatic update to WordPress alpha version 5.5.3-alpha-49449 caused a number of additional Twenty Twenty theme versions to be installed along with the Akismet plugin on some WordPress installations.
The core team re-enabled the ability to download WordPress version 5.5.2 to prevent sites from updating to the alpha version.
At the same time, the Core team then released a strong update of WordPress with WordPress 5.5.3 to fix the issue that prevented new installations.
What can you do?
If your WordPress site was updated to WordPress 5.5.3-alpha, more default themes may have been added to your site.
Maybe the Akismet plugin was also installed.
Both are more of an annoyance than a serious mistake.
All you have to do is check if there are suddenly more themes in your WordPress, and if there are, you can simply delete them in WordPress.
You can do the same with Akismet, but Akismet is a good thing, so why not consider letting it stay?
Update WordPress to version 5.5.3
Update WordPress to version 5.5.3 if you haven’t already done so.
If auto-updates are enabled in your WordPress, then the 5.5.3 version may already be installed.
If you have not yet updated to WordPress version 5.5.2, then the update to version 5.5.3 is basically the same version – with a minor fix…
Faulty update of WordPress – do you need help?
If you need assistance in connection with the erroneous update of WordPress from wordpress.org, you are more than welcome to contact us.