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If you run into problems trying to update WordPress, it could be caused by the temporary directory WordPress uses for downloads. You can easily fix this by defining a WP_TEMP_DIR in your wp-config.php file below.

WordPress update failing

If you're trying to upgrade WordPress itself, you might encounter this error when trying to update:

Download failed.: Destination directory for file streaming does not exist or is not writable.

Installation Failed

WordPress core update failed

WordPress plugin update failing

If you were trying to update a WordPress plugin, you might have encountered this error instead when updating:

An error occured while updating (Plugin Name). Download failed. Destination directory for file streaming does not exist or is not writable.

WordPress plugin update failed

Define a WP_TEMP_DIR in your wp-config.php file

If you've encountered issues trying to update WordPress, you can simply follow the steps below to resolve them.

  1. Open you wp-config.php file with the cPanel File Manager Code Editor

  2. You should see this code towards the top of the file:

    * @package WordPress
    // ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
    /** The name of the database for WordPress */
    define('DB_NAME', 'anotherd_wrd1');

    Place this definition of define('WP_TEMP_DIR', ABSPATH . 'wp-content/'); in-between the lines mentioned above, so it ends up looking like this when you've completed it:

    * @package WordPress
    define('WP_TEMP_DIR', ABSPATH . 'wp-content/');
    // ** MySQL settings - You can get this info from your web host ** //
    /** The name of the database for WordPress */
    define('DB_NAME', 'anotherd_wrd1');

    Now Save your wp-config.php file.

  3. Try to update WordPress again, if for some reason it is still failing, be sure to check file permissions on your wp-content folder, and ensure it's set to 755 so that the server can write to it.

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Related Questions

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n/a Points
2014-04-04 3:40 pm

Woah, thank you so much!!

9,968 Points
2014-04-04 3:46 pm
No problem Daniel, glad it helped! :)
n/a Points
2015-01-27 5:42 pm

What if you have this ? 

 Could not resolve host:

Installation failed.

11,156 Points
2015-01-27 5:59 pm
It appears that something is blocking the connection to WordPress. Is this hosted with us? If so, you may contact live support for further assistance.
n/a Points
2014-04-22 3:58 am


This worked perfect in my update to 3.9.

Thanks a lot!

n/a Points
2014-05-21 10:45 am

This fixed my issue. Thanks a lot!

n/a Points
2014-05-23 8:25 pm

Fixed! Thanks heaps Jacob

n/a Points
2014-06-22 9:58 am

It worked ! thanks

n/a Points
2014-07-08 4:15 am
Thanks for the help. Perhaps the text on the website could have a bit more whitespace around it as it is a tiny bit cramped. Great site. Thanks!
9,968 Points
2014-07-09 1:21 am
Hey Nick, thanks a lot for commenting!

This is one of my guides that hasn't been updated for quite some time, and Google Analytics doesn't give me human input about styling. So I really appreciate your observations for hopefully making this content easier to read for another person down the road!

Please take another look at the guide if you can, and let me know if you have any other recommendations!

Thanks again :)

- Jacob
n/a Points
2014-07-16 4:28 am

Great Fix. :P

n/a Points
2014-08-30 10:36 am

Hi Jacob,

For me this sollution is still not working.I have also put this problem up on the wordpress forum but still no luck.Do you have any other ideas what could be wrong?I have the: define('WP_TEMP_DIR', ABSPATH . 'wp-content/');

as follow: define( 'WP_TEMP_DIR', ABSPATH . '/public/tmp') ;in my config.phpMy tmp folder is in my public-folder

Everything is set to 755

Hope you can help me out.


n/a Points
2014-08-30 11:40 am

Hi Jacob,

I posted a question earlier today but it's not showing here.

But in case you did receive this question...I resolved it so please ignore that post ;-)


25,902 Points
2014-09-02 11:32 am
Hello Daphne,

Yes, the questions will not display unless they are approved due to lots of spammers. However, we are glad to hear you were able to resolve the issue. If you would not mind sharing how you did it, it may be helpful for others who run into the same situation.

Kindest Regards,
Scott M
n/a Points
2014-09-02 12:06 pm

Hi Scot,

Yes ofcourse!

What resolved the issue for me was removing: "DEFINE('WP_TEMP_DIR', ABSPATH . '/PUBLIC/TMP')" in the config.php file.

After that I could update all my plugins again!

Kind regards,Daphne

25,902 Points
2014-09-02 1:44 pm
Hello Daphne,

Thank you very much for the share! We will be sure to pass that info on.

Kindest Regards,
Scott M
n/a Points
2014-10-09 7:19 pm

Thank you Daphne. You saved my day.

n/a Points
2014-12-03 1:19 pm

Hi I am having the same problem, I can't update wordpress or my plugins, or upload photos to my posts - I tried your solution and it didn't resolve the problem for me, unfortunately.  I'm wondering is the configure file Daphen mentioned is the wpconfigure or a different one located somewhere else?  Thanks for your help!

23,894 Points
2014-12-03 3:40 pm
Hello Carter Adopt,

Sorry for the continued problems with WordPress. Yes, the "config.php" references "wp-config.php" which is located in the root of your WordPress installation. If you continue to have the problem, please provide us more information on your account. Give us your URL or customer ID (if you are an IMH customer) and we would happy to look further into the problem.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2014-09-20 8:02 am


It sorts it out. Thank you  ;)

n/a Points
2014-12-15 10:45 pm
Thanks. This solved my issue with opdating i plugins, but - unfortunately - not the uploading of images. But I fearthere may be some overall php-settings that needs to be fixed in my case.
n/a Points
2015-01-05 6:49 am

thank you.

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