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I just updated my Drupal website from 7.7 to 7.12, but there were a lot of issues when running update.php.
I was wondering if it is possible to update Drupal 7.7 directly to 7.12, or you have to get 7.8, 7.9, 7.10 and 7.11 before you can update to 7.12.

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You should be able to go right from 7.7 to 7.12. The messages from update.php depend on changes to the database schema from version to version made by drupal and other modules, and they are normal.

You may be interested in drush. It allows you to run updates with the pm-update command and automatically runs update.php for you. It also saves backups in your home directory. There is a website, http://drushmake.me/, that allows you to build out sites with drush make if you are using drush version 5.

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When updating from a major version (e.g. Drupal 6) to the latest release one the same major version, you can update directly to the latest available release.

When updating from a major Drupal version (e.g. Drupal 6) to another major version (e.g. Drupal 7), it is better to first update to the latest release of the already installed Drupal version, and then update to the latest release of the other major version.

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