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XAMPP Lite & Upgrading PHP

I have an Apache web server running Apache 2.2.12 with PHP 5.3.0 + PEAR that was installed from the XAMPP Lite (Basis Package) version 1.7.2 by a hired gun. Recently my system admin informed me that this version of PHP has some security weaknesses and advised I should upgrade the PHP to a more secure version. Since the person who installed this server is long gone, I need to do this upgrade myself and am hoping I can manage that with advice from those here who know Apache and PHP. So far, it seems likely that one can upgrade the PHP independently, but I don't want to lose the web server as a result of this upgrade and hope someone here could guide me as to the steps to follow. If this is an unreasonable request, perhaps someone out there could give me a link where I could self-educate to the point where I could figure out the steps myself? All help is most appreciated.
potterjazz
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Potterjazz
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Potterjazz
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
There is an upgrade package available but it upgrades the entire installation.  They strongly recommend that you backup everything before using it.
http://www.apachefriends.org/en/xampp-windows.html

Upgrading only PHP from a standard PHP package may not work.  XAMPP typically is installed in it's own directories that are different from what a plain PHP installation usually uses.  The ini files are also in a different location.  And there are registry entries for the installations.
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
And there is no upgrade package for the XAMPP Lite version.  Also make sure you backup your MYSQL databases before you start.
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PotterjazzAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the help Dave I am loathe to have this server collapse in an effort to make it slightly more secure, and notice that the new version of XAMPP Lite has a PHP version that is only one version newer. Since my sysadmin isn't *requiring* me to make this change, I'm going to leave well enough alone for now and when I do upgrade, do so for the more robust, non-Lite version and have an expert do it for me.
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Dave BaldwinFixer of ProblemsCommented:
I think that's a good plan.  Backing up is still a good plan...
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