Drupal 9, the latest iteration of the popular content management system, is set to make its debut on June 3, 2020. This release carries both excitement and a touch of nostalgia as it signifies the nearing end-of-life for Drupal 7 and Drupal 8, scheduled for November 2021. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the world of Drupal 9, understanding its significance, differences from Drupal 8, and who should consider making the transition.
Drupal 9, as defined by the official Drupal website (Drupal.org), is essentially an improved and cleaned-up version of Drupal 8. While it may not appear revolutionary at first glance, this release marks a shift in the development approach. Unlike previous major Drupal updates, Drupal 9 builds upon the existing architecture, focusing on enhancing user-friendliness.
Drupal 9 introduces a novel release model, where minor updates are planned every six months following the initial release. These updates aim to streamline the CMS and make it more user-friendly, particularly for newcomers.
While Drupal 8 and 9 share similarities, there are important distinctions that make Drupal 9 a worthwhile upgrade.
Drupal 9 stands out due to its exceptional backward compatibility. It seamlessly integrates with Drupal 8, ensuring that all Drupal 8 components continue to function effectively. This eliminates the need for extensive module updates, easing the transition process and fostering a smoother user experience.
Drupal 9 includes support for the latest PHP libraries, such as Symfony and Twig, ensuring better performance and compatibility.
A significant improvement in Drupal 9 is the compatibility of contributed modules with both Drupal 8 and 9. This eliminates historical roadblocks, simplifying the update process.
Drupal 9 addresses accumulated deprecated code from Drupal 8, enhancing overall performance and efficiency.
The adoption of updated third-party dependencies further contributes to a more efficient CMS and improved website performance.
In short, everyone using Drupal 8 (or any other version) should consider transitioning to Drupal 9. Although Drupal 8 will receive security updates until November 2021, delaying the upgrade may lead to complications in the long run. Unlike previous releases, Drupal 9 lacks a Long Term Support (LTS) program, making timely migration a prudent choice.
For those currently using WordPress but considering a shift to Drupal, the release of Drupal 9 presents an opportune moment. While the transition may initially be challenging, Drupal offers more customization opportunities and robust security features. Moreover, the update process for Drupal is becoming more akin to WordPress, making it a viable choice for those seeking a smoother experience.
Preparation is key to a successful transition to Drupal 9. While Drupal 7 and 8 will be supported until 2021, early preparation is advisable, especially for those currently using Drupal 7.
After completing the preparation steps, updating to Drupal 9 becomes a smoother process. If you are already using Drupal 8.8 or a later version, follow these steps:
Drupal 9 represents a significant step forward in the evolution of the Drupal content management system. Its emphasis on backward compatibility, removal of deprecated code, and integration of updated third-party dependencies make it a compelling choice for Drupal users. Whether you are currently using Drupal 8 or considering a transition from WordPress, Drupal 9 offers a user-friendly experience and robust customization options.
To ensure a seamless transition, it is essential to prepare well in advance, keeping your modules and themes up to date and eliminating deprecated code. By following these steps, you can embrace Drupal 9 confidently, unlocking its potential for improved website performance and efficiency. Don’t delay; start your journey to Drupal 9 today.
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