Updating phpBB3 is a very important step in keeping your forum secure, fast, and bug free. Updates can fix critical security holes in phpBB3 forum, improve the phpBB3 php files and phpBB3 database code by optimizing it. It can even improve the captcha code, so you have less spam bots on your forum.
You would need a FTP client like Filezilla, FTP account, web browser, and the phpBB3 update zip file from phpbb.com to update phpBB3 on your web server.
You should first backup your phpBB3 folder, and database on your web server.
Tutorial for updating phpbb3 to the latest version.
1. Download the update zip file for phpBB3 from phpBB3
2. Log in to your phpbb admin panel click on Back up your database link in maintenance tab.
3. Click Select All and Submit button.
4. Click restore link and pick your backup to download, and press “Download back up” button.
5. Upload your phpBB3 update files you downloaded from phpbb.com to the root directory of your forum
6. Go to system tab and press the update link
7. Read the instructions, and press “proceed to next step” button.
8. Click update database.
9. Click update my database now.
10. Click “continue the update process now” button.
11. Scroll to bottom of the page and click download modified archive file
12. Pick archive type and click “download” button.
13. Unzip downloaded archive and upload the files to the root directory of phpbb3.
14.When you uploaded the files to the root folder of phpBB3, click “continue update now” button.
15. phpBB3 update successful if you did everything right.
16. Delete or rename your install directory in the root of your phpBB3 folder on your web server.
Congratulations, you are done updating your phpBB3 forum. All you need to do now is visit your forum, and see if everything is working right. If it is not, then restore your database, and your old phpBB3 backup files.