With over 1,000,000 websites running on Drupal, Drupal 7 is still the crowd favorite which is why you may be wondering if the current version of the popular drupal CMS platform is worth upgrading to. Long story short, Drupal 9 is definitely an upgrade all Drupal users should look into. Here’s why you need to download Drupal 9 and make the migration!
What is Drupal 9?
Being built upon Drupal 8, Drupal 9 may seem identical to its predecessor, however Drupal 9 is on the next level and is setting the stage for Drupal 10 and following updates. The Drupal 9 release date was June 3 of 2020 as a solution and upgraded Drupal platform as both Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 are reaching end of life (EOL.)
The Benefits of Drupal 9
Upgrading and migrating websites mean that you get to reap the Drupal 9 benefits. Here are the advantages that Drupal 9 features have over its predecessors:
Unlike its predecessors, Drupal 9 is backward compatible which makes this version of Drupal able to utilize configurations, data, and modules from Drupal 8. Additionally, upgrading to Drupal 9 and migrating a website from Drupal 7 or Drupal 8 is easy.
Upgrading to Drupal 9 means that you are investing in a more secure CMS platform. Drupal 9’s dependencies on third parties are also being cut down which has made this version more stable and secure.
Improved Code Structure
Similar to Drupal 8.9, it may not seem like Drupal 9 is much of an upgrade. However, what sets Drupal 9 apart from its previous versions is that it does not have deprecated codes that enable you to have a cleaner code base. After migrating to Drupal 9, deprecated codes are removed which will mean that a website running on this newer version of Drupal has better performance.
E-commerce is one of the main focuses of Drupal 9 as modules for integration with platforms such as Shopify, Magneto, Elastic Path, and BigCommerce are readily available.
Also, with its API-first approach, Drupal 9 enhances user experience (UX) due to its Headless CMS functionality. That being said, Drupal 9 offers front-end freedom, is easier for marketers to use, and has decoupled capabilities.
User-friendly Editorial Experience
This version of Drupal has updated editorial workflows, an improved UI, a mobile-first approach, and has been designed to manage CMS updates with ease. The Layout Builder is also in Drupal 9’s core which means that site builders and editors are able to easily build custom and flexible pages.
While various performance-enhancing modules have been built into Drupal 9’s core, BigPipe, the Internal page cache, the Advanced CSS/JSS, CDN, and Blazy module also contribute to this version’s powerful performance. As a result, Drupal 9 offers fast content delivery, data caching, frontend rendering, image loading, and better frontend performance.
Preparing for Drupal 9
A majority of sites are still running on Drupal 7 because it is familiar, websites may not be very complicated or businesses simply are unaware of Drupal 9 and its powerful features. However, making the switch from Drupal 7 or Drupal 8 to 9 is easy and extremely beneficial.
Migrating to Drupal 9 from Drupal 7
The two different ways to switch from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9 are migrating directly to Drupal 9 or migrating to Drupal 8 and then upgrading to Drupal 9. Migrating a website directly to Drupal 9 is ideal for simple or brochure-ware sites. On the other hand, more complicated websites should be migrated to Drupal 9 before being upgraded to the latest version of Drupal.
Upgrading to Drupal 9 from Drupal 8
Before upgrading to Drupal 9, it is recommended that the Upgrade Status module is installed and enabled. After scanning the Contributed and Custom modules that look for incompatible or deprecated code, you will either update to Drupal 8.8 or Drupal 8.9 and remove deprecated code before updating or immediately update to Drupal 9.
What About Drupal 10?
The Drupal 10 release date has been set to December 2022 and while waiting for this upgrade that is said to make Drupal even more flexible and accessible, staying up to date and letting us help you transition to Drupal 9 will ensure that you are ready for the next version of this CMS.
Drupal is part of a collection of functions that will extend and improve the functionality of a website. GTECH is a team of Drupal developers specializing in using innovative and leading technology to create and cutting-edge websites. We offer world-class Drupal development services that position you as industry innovators and leaders.