I sometimes run into the issue, when my PHP code has errors. I run update.php, but it fails with a php error message. After that, Drupal seems to think that the database is up-to-date, but it isn't. Trouble is, running update.php again does not solve the problem.

For example, just now, it has failed to create the tables for a newly created entity. update.php does nothing, but all my Entity code – of course – fails with database errors.

I don't know how to recover from this situation, other than uninstalling and reinstalling the module, which means killing all content first.

  • 2
    Restore the database from the backup you've made before running update.php and then fix the module code. If it's not your own module look in the issue queue.
    – 4uk4
    Commented Mar 29, 2018 at 16:45
  • Backup?? Er ... :-D
    – Hendrik
    Commented Mar 29, 2018 at 17:21
  • OK, I didn't have a backup, so what I did was: 1) bugfixes, 2) export all configuration, 3) uninstall and reinstall module, 4) import configuration. I didn't mind the content, but needed to keep configuration (fields etc.).
    – Hendrik
    Commented Mar 30, 2018 at 10:34

1 Answer 1


You could also rerun the update after you fixed your code.

See here: reseting the hook_update_n status of a module

  • Yes, if you've located the error and know that it stopped the update hook early, before it could make changes to the entity tables, then you can re-run it on the same database. Otherwise you don't know if the database is corrupted and it is advisable to restore the database first.
    – 4uk4
    Commented Apr 4, 2018 at 11:47

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