I need to update this wordpress install every once in a while. There are lots of bash scripts on the internet that perform this task, and they are complicated beyond reason. This is what I use:
function cfg {  
    grep $2 $1/wp-config.php | awk 'BEGIN {FS="[, )\x27]*"}; {print $3;}'

echo "> backing up database."
mysqldump --user=$(cfg $1 DB_USER) \
          --password=$(cfg $1 DB_PASSWORD)  \
          --host=$(cfg $1 DB_HOST)          \
          $(cfg $1 DB_NAME) > backup.database.sql

echo "> backing up website."
tar -cjf backup.files.bz2 $1
echo "> retrieving latest wordpress."
wget -q https://wordpress.org/latest.zip
unzip -qq latest.zip

echo "> updating wordpress."
rm -r $1/wp-includes $1/wp-admin
cp -r wordpress/* $1/

echo "> cleaning up."
rm -r wordpress
rm latest.zip
It takes a single argument, which is the name of your wordpress root directory. It backups your database to the file backup.database.sql and backups the files to backup.files.bz2, then it simply proceeds as described in the wordpress codex for updating manual. I do not see what all the fuzz is about.

This glab post is essentially about running a certain shell command remotely on multiple systems within a network that has been set up for public-key authentication. It's a standard task for experienced system administrators I am sure, but for me it was a little adventure in bash scripting — and I wanted to share it with you. Do you want to know more?