ODK Central Upgrade from v1.2.1 to current version

1. What is the issue? Please be detailed.

We host our own instance of ODK Central, and our organisation haven't been keeping the server version up to date. We are currently hosting v1.2.1 which I know is significantly behind the release cycle. However, we want to now bring this up to date and put in place a version control system.

We have regular backups obtained via API. Our server is a virtual machine so can be snapshotted and cloned etc for testing purposes. But I would like to know whether it is possible to cleanly upgrade the version we have, or have we lost that opportunity, and the best solution is to create a fresh installation of ODK Central, and possibly migrate projects over one by one, or restoring the database backups.

If we could restore database backups, I have tested this on an instance of ODK Central hosted on my local machine, and the restore is successful until I log into Central and get a 500 error. Then checking the logs I see this error:

error: column projects.description does not exist

Does this mean restoring from backup is not an option?

Would appreciate any help or guidance anyone could provide.

Many thanks

If restoring from a backup, you need to be restoring to the same version of Central that created the backup.

I think you should be able to upgrade. Start by reviewing upgrade notes for all versions between your current version and the one you are upgrading to: https://docs.getodk.org/central-upgrade/

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Agreed with @danbjoseph that you can go directly from v1.2.x to the latest version of Central. Since you have snapshots and clones, I would recommend you test the upgrade on a snapshot so you know exactly what to expect.

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