Running the Upgrade Process

Now you’re ready to run the upgrade process. It updates the database schema for the core and your installed modules. Verification processes test the upgrade. Configured verifications for the core and modules run afterwards, but can be run manually too.

Here are the ways to run upgrade processes:

  • Upgrade everything in one shot: Use the upgrade tool to upgrade the core and all the modules.

  • Upgrade the core and the modules separately: Use the upgrade tool (recommended) or Gogo shell to upgrade the core. Then use Gogo shell to upgrade each module.

If you are upgrading from Liferay Portal 6.2 or earlier, it’s recommended to use the upgrade tool to upgrade everything. It’s the easiest, most comprehensive way to upgrade from those versions. For version 7.0 onward, however, Liferay Portal’s modular framework lets you upgrade modules–even the core–individually. Focusing first on upgrading the core and your most important modules might be better for you. The point is, Liferay Portal CE 7.0 upgrade process is flexible.

Running the Upgrade Tool

The upgrade tool provides the easiest way to upgrade the core and installed modules. You can configure the upgrade from files or inside the tool’s command line interface. The upgrade tool lets you upgrade everything–the core and all the modules–together or separately.

Liferay Portal CE 7.0 bundles include the upgrade tool. If you installed Liferay Portal CE 7.0 manually, you can download the upgrade tool separately from the same location on

To upgrade only the core, add a file called com.liferay.portal.upgrade.internal.configuration.ReleaseManagerConfiguration.cfg to the [Liferay Home]/osgi/configs folder with the following content:


This configuration prevents automatic module upgrade, but causes the upgrade tool to open a Gogo shell after finishing the core upgrade.

The upgrade tool resides in the [Liferay Home]/tools/portal-tools-db-upgrade-client folder.

This command starts the upgrade tool:

java -jar

Here are the tool’s default Java parameters:

-Dfile.encoding=UTF8 -Duser.language=en -Duser.timezone=GMT -Xmx2048m 

The -j option lets you override the JVM parameters. For example, these options set the JVM memory to 10GB, which is a good starting point for this process type:

java -jar -j "-Dfile.encoding=UTF8 -Duser.language=en -Duser.timezone=GMT -Xmx10240m"

The -l option lets you specify the tool’s log file name:

java -jar -l "output.log"

Here are all the upgrade tool command line options:

–help or -h: Prints the tool’s help message.

–jvm-opts or -j + [arg]: Sets any JVM options for the upgrade process.

–log-file or -l + [arg]: Specifies the tool’s log file name.

–shell or -s: Automatically connects you to the Gogo shell after finishing the upgrade process.

Configuring the Upgrade

The core upgrade requires configuration. You can configure it at runtime via the command line interface or pre-configure it in these files:

  • Specifies the server’s location and libraries.
  • Configures the database connection.
  • Sets the rest of the portal properties that the upgrade requires. You might want to copy your current portal properties (except your database properties) into this file. Before copying your current properties, make sure you’ve updated the portal properties for Liferay Portal CE 7.0.

Each file’s properties are described next.


Specify the following information to configure the app server on which Liferay Portal CE 7.0 is installed:

dir: the application server directory (required)

extra.lib.dirs: a comma delimited list of extra directories containing any binaries or resources to add to the class path (required)

global.lib.dir: the application server’s global library directory (required)

portal.dir: the directory where portal is installed in your app server (required)


Specify the following information to configure the database you’re upgrading. Note that these properties correspond exactly to the JDBC portal properties you’d use in a file.

jdbc.default.driverClassName (required)

jdbc.default.url (required)

jdbc.default.username (required)

jdbc.default.password (required)


Specify the following information to configure the upgrade itself:

liferay.home: the Liferay home folder (required)

hibernate.jdbc.batch_size: the JDBC batch size used to improve performance; set to 250 by default (optional)

Example Upgrade Configuration

You can either configure the upgrade via property files or via the command line interface.

Here’s an example interaction with the upgrade tool’s command line interface:

Please enter your application server (tomcat): 
Please enter your application server directory (../../tomcat-8.0.32): 

Please enter your extra library directories (../../tomcat-8.0.32/bin): 

Please enter your global library directory (../../tomcat-8.0.32/lib): 

Please enter your portal directory (../../tomcat-8.0.32/webapps/ROOT): 

[ db2 mariadb mysql oracle postgresql sqlserver sybase ]
Please enter your database (mysql): 
Please enter your database host (localhost):


The command line interface creates the configuration files based on your input. If you want to set all of this up ahead of time, however, you’ll want to put this information into configuration files.

Here are example upgrade configuration files that you can customize:





The upgrade tool first executes the core’s upgrade processes and verifiers.

If the upgrade tool’s autoUpgrade property is set to true (the default setting), upgrade processes for all installed modules are run too.

If you set autoUpgrade=false in a file called com.liferay.portal.upgrade.internal.configuration.ReleaseManagerConfiguration.cfg and copy the file into the [Liferay Home]/osgi/configs folder, the upgrade tool opens Gogo shell automatically after the core upgrade.

The Gogo shell lets you upgrade modules, check module upgrade status, and verify upgrades. Read on to learn how to use Gogo shell commands to use the upgrade-related commands.

Gogo shell commands for module upgrades

Liferay Portal’s Gogo shell commands let you upgrade modules, check module status, or execute verify processes.

If you ran the upgrade tool and it opened Gogo shell, you’re already connected. Otherwise, you can connect to Gogo shell via telnet:

telnet localhost 11311

Here are the commands available in the upgrade namespace:

exit or quit: exits the Gogo shell

upgrade:help: displays upgrade commands

upgrade:check: list upgrades pending to execute because they failed in the past or the module hasn’t reached its final version

upgrade:execute {module_name}: executes upgrades for that module

upgrade:executeAll: executes all pending module upgrade processes

upgrade:list: lists all registered upgrades

upgrade:list {module_name}: lists the module’s required upgrade steps

upgrade:list | grep Registered: lists registered upgrades and their versions

verify:help: displays verify commands

verify:check {module_name}: lists the latest execution result for the module’s verify process

verify:checkAll: lists the latest execution results for all verify processes

verify:execute {module_name}: executes the module’s verifier

verify:executeAll: executes all verifiers

verify:list: lists all registered verifiers

There are many useful Liferay commands and standard commands available in Gogo shell. The following sections describe Liferay upgrade commands.

Listing module upgrade processes

Before upgrading modules, you should find which have unresolved dependencies, which are resolved and available to upgrade, and examine the module upgrade processes.

Executing upgrade:list in the Gogo shell lists the modules whose upgrade dependencies are satisfied. These modules can be upgraded.

If a module is active but not listed, its dependencies need to be upgraded. The Gogo shell command scr:info [upgrade_step_class_qualified_name] shows the upgrade step class’s unsatisfied dependencies. Here’s an example scr:info command:

scr:info com.liferay.journal.upgrade.JournalServiceUpgrade

Invoking upgrade:list [module_name] lists the module’s upgrade processes, in no particular order. For example, executing upgrade:list com.liferay.bookmarks.service (for the Bookmarks Service module), lists this:

Registered upgrade processes for com.liferay.bookmarks.service 1.0.0
        {fromSchemaVersionString=0.0.0, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0, upgradeStep=com.liferay.portal.spring.extender.internal.context.Modul[email protected]6e9691da}
        {fromSchemaVersionString=0.0.1, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-3, up[email protected]5f41b7ee}
        {fromSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-1, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0, upgradeS[email protected]53929b1d}
        {fromSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-2, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-1, upgradeS[email protected]3e05b7c8}
        {fromSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-3, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0-step-2, upg[email protected]6964cb47}

An application’s upgrade step class names typically reveal their intention. For example, the example’s com.liferay.bookmarks.upgrade.v1_0_0.UpgradePortletId upgrade step class updates the app’s portlet ID. The other example upgrade step classes update class names, the LastPublishDate, and PortletSettings. The example’s step from 0.0.0 to 1.0.0 upgrades the module from an empty database.

To examine a module’s upgrade process better, you can sort the listed upgrade steps mentally or in a text editor. Here’s the upgrade step order for a Bookmarks Service module to be upgraded from Liferay Portal 6.2 (the module’s database exists) to schema version 1.0.0:

  • 0.0.1 to 1.0.0-step-3
  • 0.0.1-step-3 to 1.0.0-step-2
  • 0.0.1-step-2 to 1.0.0-step-1
  • 0.0.1-step-1 to 1.0.0

The overall module upgrade process starts at version 0.0.1 and finishes at version 1.0.0. The first step starts on the initial version (0.0.1) and finishes on the target version’s highest step (step-3). The last step starts on the target version’s lowest step (step-1) and finishes on the target version (1.0.0).

Once you understand the module’s upgrade process, you can execute it with confidence.

Executing module upgrades

Executing upgrade:execute [module_name] upgrades the module. You might run into upgrade errors that you must resolve. Executing the command again starts the upgrade from the last successful step.

You can check upgrade status by executing upgrade:list [module_name]. For example, entering upgrade:list com.liferay.iframe.web outputs this:

Registered upgrade processes for com.liferay.iframe.web 0.0.1
   {fromSchemaVersionString=0.0.1, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0, [email protected]37752d}

The first line lists the module’s name and current version. The example module’s current version is 0.0.1. The toSchemaVersionString value is the target version.

Executing upgrade:list [module_name] on the module after successfully upgrading it shows the module’s name followed by the version you targeted.

For example, if you successfully upgraded com.liferay.iframe.web to version 1.0.0, executing upgrade:list com.liferay.iframe.web shows the module’s version is 1.0.0:

Registered upgrade processes for com.liferay.iframe.web 1.0.0
   {fromSchemaVersionString=0.0.1, toSchemaVersionString=1.0.0, [email protected]37752d}

For module upgrades that don’t complete, you can check their status and resolve their issues.

Checking upgrade status

It’s good to know things still need upgrading and why. You might have forgotten to upgrade a module or its upgrade failed. In any case, it’s important to know where your upgrade stands.

The command upgrade:check lists modules that have impending upgrades.

For example, if module failed in a step labeled 1.0.0-step-2. Executing upgrade:check shows this:

Would upgrade from 1.0.0-step-2 to
1.0.0 and its dependent modules

Modules often depend on other modules to complete upgrading. Executing scr:info [upgrade_step_class_qualified_name] shows the upgrade step class’s dependencies. You must upgrade dependency modules to successfully upgrade dependent modules.

To resolve and activate a module, its upgrade must complete. The Apache Felix Dependency Manager Gogo shell command dm wtf reveals unresolved dependencies. If your module requires a certain data schema version (e.g., its bnd.bnd specifies Liferay-Require-SchemaVersion: 1.0.2) but the module hasn’t completed upgrade to that version, dm wtf shows that the schema version is not registered.

1 missing dependencies found.
The following service(s) are missing:
 * com.liferay.portal.kernel.model.Release (&( is not found in the service registry

The dm wtf command can also help detect errors in portlet definitions and custom portlet schemaVersion fields.

Browsing the Liferay Portal database Release_ table can help you determine a module’s upgrade status too. The core’s servletContextName field value is portal. If the core’s schemaVersion field matches your new Liferay Portal version (e.g., 7.0.1 for Liferay Portal CE GA2) and the verified field is 1 (true), the core upgrade completed successfully.

Each module has one Release_ table record, and the value for its schemaVersion field must be 1.0.0 or greater (1.0.0 is the initial version for Liferay Portal CE 7.0 modules, except for those that were previously traditional plugins intended for Liferay Portal version 6.2 or earlier).

Executing verify processes

Verify processes make sure the upgrade executed successfully. Verify processes in the core are automatically executed after upgrading Liferay Portal. You can also execute them by configuring the verify.* portal properties and restarting your server.

Also, some modules have verify processes. To check for available verify processes, enter the Gogo shell command verify:list. To run a verify process, enter verify:execute [verify_qualified_name].

Post-Upgrade Tasks

After upgrading and running verify processes, make sure to re-enable search indexing by either removing the file from your [Liferay Home]/osgi/configs folder or setting this property in it:


Then you should reindex Liferay Portal’s search indexes. Don’t just do this blindly, however. By default, Liferay Portal ships with an embedded configuration for Elasticsearch. This configuration works great for demo purposes, but is not supported in production. Make sure to install and configure a standalone Elasticsearch instance to run in production.

Once you’ve configured search and reindexed your search index, your upgraded system is ready for action! Congratulations!

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