I like to follow the steps bellow that I've created myself with the help of Morgana Spindler.
Summarizing, the upgrade steps should be the following:
1. Backup your data:
2. Extract the zip/tar.gz file of the latest version of Confluence on the place you choose.
3. Into the extracted folder, open the file confluence-init.properties, which is located at Confluence install directory\confluence\web-inf\classes and edit the line: confluence.home=/usr/local/confluence/home to point to the path where is your new home folder of your Confluence (from backup).
4. On Confluence home folder, there is the confluence.cfg.xml file, the connections settings to your data base are saved into this file. If you have changed the name of your database server, database name, database user name or password, you need to edit this file to modify to your new parameters (from backup).
5. User management integration:
If you have delegated your user management to JIRA, LDAP, Crowd, or any other external user management system, copy the following files from your old Confluence installation to your new Confluence installation:
If you are upgrading from an earlier version of Confluence (2.5.5 and earlier) and are copying your existing atlassian-user.xml file from your previous instance, please ensure that the hibernate cache parameter in this file has been enabled, to avoid performance related issues. (NOTE: If you use Crowd for your user management, you do not need to do this.):
If you have delegated your user management to Crowd, you will also need to copy the Crowd client library and configuration files from your old Confluence installation to your new Confluence installation:
If you need more information, please refer to the Crowd documentation.
6. Start your new Confluence instance.
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