The process for upgrading your framework is similar to the install process with some extra steps. For one thing WordPress prevents a theme from being replaced, so we must work around that. Secondly, if you have made any modifications outside of the theme options, you will need to ensure those are carried forward. And thirdly, the usual caveats apply to backing up your theme just in case you need to revert back.
Here are the steps for upgrading your theme:
It will take a few minutes to get through the following steps, so if your site is busy do this at the slowest activity time and put the site into maintenance mode before starting. There are several WordPress plugins that will help with this. If you are really really busy, you probably don't need these instructions and are capable of preparing a replacement theme offline to avoid downtime entirely.
Sign in to your account on the Oxford Framework site, select the theme package you want to download, and save it to your computer. Remember where you put it so you can find it later.
Here are the steps to activate a theme other than the Oxford Framework:
There are numerous ways to backup your theme before upgrading. It depends on your hosting provider and permissions you have. However you accomplish it, the folder you want to backup is ~/wp-content/themes/oxford. Make a copy in a safe place, online or offline. At the very least, rename the oxford folder to something else. That is safe to do as long as you have deactivated it, as described above.
Before uploading the latest version of the framework, you must remove the current version. Make sure you have a backup first. If you renamed the oxford folder to create your backup, skip the following steps. Otherwise, perform these steps:
The existing oxford folder will be deleted so you can upload a newer version.
Follow these steps to upload the new version of the framework to your site:
The latest version of the theme will be uploaded and installed into the oxford folder.
Ideally you can skip this step because you haven't made any modifications within the theme folder. On this site I have added custom fonts. If I were to skip this step those fonts would be lost. To keep them I must put a copy of the font files back where they were before the upgrade.
You may have custom fonts, or you may have modified some code to tweak the framework to your liking. In this case, reapply your changes to the latest version that you just uploaded.
If you just performed the above steps to upload the theme, the theme zip file will upload and you will be presented with an option to Activate. Click that link and the theme will be activated.
If the new theme was uploaded earlier (perhaps you had to reapply modifications), perform the following steps:
If you have the designer package, you will need to recompile your style sheets. All changes that you made up to this point will be reapplied and your custom style sheets recreated.
If you do not have the designer package, you can skip this step.