What’s new in Drupal 9? These days, this is the question on the lips of every designer, developer, and content creator working with Drupal. With the release of Drupal 9 in June 2020, people are a bit confused about the Drupal 9 features. On one hand, you get to hear “Drupal 9 offers no new features”, on the other hand, you hear about “easy upgrade to Drupal 9”, “newer PHP libraries”, “a brand new admin theme”, and so on.
When it comes to Drupal 9 upgrade, perhaps the experience you had when upgrading to Drupal 8 from Drupal 7 is still haunting you, isn’t it? You just cannot forget the process of upgrading to Drupal 8 led you to rewrite Drupal from the ground up. After the upgrade, the contributed modules were not compatible with Drupal, and you had to sit down to rewrite tons of custom code.
Drupal 9.0 comes with the same features as of Drupal 8.9, except those that are provided by updated dependencies. Just like Drupal 8, Drupal 9.1, 9.2, and other newer versions will add new backward-compatible features to Drupal 9 every six months after its release. Another major advantage of Drupal 9 over Drupal 8 is that the platform will be backed by security fixes after November 2021. Among the various features of Drupal 9, the most significant feature is its ability to provide the easiest upgrade from Drupal 8. To leverage the full potentials of Drupal 9, you may hire Drupal developers from a professional Drupal development company that can help you with a smooth upgrade or migration to Drupal 9.
Besides these, there are many Drupal 9 features that you may look forward to. So, without much ado, let’s dive into the topic and see what Drupal 9 entails.
The New Drupal 9 Features – What to Expect?
1. Buttery Smooth Upgrade from Drupal 8 to Drupal 9
When upgrading to Drupal 9 from Drupal 8, you will experience a smooth upgrade experience, and this is the only shiny feature that Drupal 9 offers. Drupal states that “Drupal 9 will be a cleaned-up version of Drupal 8. It will be the same as the last Drupal 8 minor version with our own deprecated code removed and third-party dependencies updated with Drupal 8 google analytics.
In short, upgrading to Drupal 9 will be as easy as upgrading from one minor Drupal 8 version to another version. However, you’ll only be able to enjoy a buttery smooth upgrade to Drupal 9, if you practice the health routine of removing old and deprecated code from your existing codebase.
2. New Major Versions of Symfony and Twig
Are you ready to say goodbye to the older versions of Symfony and Twig? Symfony 3 will be replaced by Symfony 4 or 5 after November 2021. You may also expect an upgrade to Twig 2.0. These upgrades can significantly improve performance, developer experience, and security. You may start by trying Symfony 4 on your Drupal 8 website just to check its ability to handle the new version.
3. Drupal 9 Eliminates All the Deprecated Code in Drupal 8
Drupal 9 weeds out all the deprecated code in Drupal 8. Since this is a long and on-going process, you should make it part of your daily routine to remove outdated code from your Drupal 8 to make sure that upgrading it to Drupal 9 will be as easy and smooth as possible.
4. Contributed Modules May Work with Drupal 8 and Drupal 9
This is one of the key features of Drupal 9 that will encourage Drupal users to upgrade to Drupal 9. Typically, there are greater chances that contributed modules share a single codebase so that they can run on Drupal 9 as well as Drupal 8 websites.
5. Drupal 9 Will Reduce Third-party Dependencies
As Drupal 9 will eliminate all the deprecated code on the Drupal 8 or 7 websites, it is going to cut-down third-party dependencies.
6. Panelizer Will Be Removed and Replaced
If you’re using Panelizer, it’s time that you should let go of this module as it is expected to be replaced by the Layout Builder in Drupal 9.
7. Drupal 9 Will Be Backward-compatible with Drupal 8
If you’re using the latest Drupal 8 version, you’ll enjoy features of Drupal 9 from day one. The majority of the Drupal 8 contributed modules will be fully compatible with Drupal 9.
8. Claro Will Be the Default Administration Theme
Claro will become the default administration theme once it is stable.
9. CKEditor 5 Will Be Implemented
The future version of Drupal may replace CKEditor 4 with CKEditor 5 as it will no longer receive security support with Drupal 9’s end-of-life.
10. Workspace Module Gets Implemented
Drupal states that “A workspace is the copy of the live site that exists in parallel to the live site. Use a workspace when you want to prepare multiple new content items that you want to go live at the same time, in a controlled manner.”
Drupal 9 Requirements that a Drupal Website Should Meet
So, now when you know about Drupal 9 features, how would you ensure that your Drupal site is Drupal 9-ready?
Here are 5 important steps to follow to ensure a smooth Drupal 9 upgrade:
- Make sure your website is compatible with Drupal 9: PHP 7.3, MySQL 5.7.8, Drush 10
- Keep your Drupal 8 website up-to-date with the latest minor versions of Drupal 8 as soon as they get released. You’ll enjoy a fast upgrade to Drupal 9 only from Drupal 8.8. and Drupal 8.9
- Make sure all your contributed modules run on their latest versions
- Remove all deprecated API from the Drupal site that you’re using
- Keep your Drupal core updated to Drupal 9
Call it a minor change or a new approach, or just something that differentiates Drupal 9 from its predecessors, the powerful Drupal 9 features will definitely encourage Drupal 7 and 8 users to move to Drupal 9. However, if you’re using the Drupal 7 website, it is better to first upgrade to Drupal 8 and then to Drupal 9 for a faster and smooth upgrade. If you need to upgrade to Drupal 9 from Drupal 8 or any other platform, you may hire Drupal developers from a reputed Drupal development company that can help you get the job done.
Drupal India is one of the most trusted Drupal development companies that provide a complete suite of Drupal development services ranging right from design to implementation. Our proficient Drupal upgrade and migration experts have already helped many enterprises to move to Drupal in a smooth and secure way. If you’re looking for fast and secure Drupal 9 migration and upgrade services, we are the place to be.
When is the right time to upgrade to Drupal 9?
NOW is the right time to upgrade to Drupal 9. As both Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 will reach end-of-their-lives in November 2021, meaning that these platforms will no longer receive security support from the community, it is wise to upgrade to Drupal 9 as early as possible.
How can I easily upgrade to Drupal 9?
We, at Drupal India, make sure you have the easiest upgrade and migration to Drupal 9. If you’re using Drupal 7, we advise you to first upgrade to the latest version of Drupal 8, and then to Drupal 9.
How much do you charge for upgrading to Drupal 9?
The cost of upgrading or migrating to Drupal 9 will depend on the complexity of your website, size of the database, experience level of the Drupal experts, and many other factors. To know in detail about the cost of Drupal 9 upgrade and migration, get in touch with our Drupal experts today.