In this blog, we'll delve into the details of Umbraco 7 End-of-Life, why you should definitely consider upgrading to a newer version and how you can do that with Arkom.
The Implications of End-of-Life
For over a decade, Umbraco 7 has been a trusted companion for countless websites, demonstrating its reliability and adaptability. Its longevity is a testament to the collaborative efforts of the Umbraco community and the development team.
When we discuss the "End-of-Life" for software, it signifies the conclusion of official support for a particular major version. After the Umbraco 7 EOL date, there will now be no more minor releases, patch updates, or active development from the Umbraco team for version 7. This includes the cessation of feature improvements, bug fixes, and security updates.
Umbraco 7 entered the security-only phase in July 2021, where it continued to receive patches addressing severe security vulnerabilities. But we can confirm that on September 30th 2023, Umbraco 7 reached its End-of-Life, where it will no longer even receive this support.
The Post-EOL Scenario
So, while it's technically possible to continue using Umbraco 7, it's not advisable. Here's why:
1. Risk of Security Issues
There will no longer be any official fixes for security vulnerabilities; continuing to use this version may expose your website to potential security risks. While the software will still function, its security could become compromised over time. For example, hackers may find it easy to target your site, damage it, and obtain private data.
2. Compliance Concerns
Many organizations have policies in place regarding EOL software. Using Umbraco 7 after the EOL date could put you at risk of non-compliance, potentially leading to legal issues. Upgrading to a supported Umbraco version is the best way to ensure compliance.
3. Missing Out on New Features
Upgrading to the latest Umbraco version ensures access to the most recent features, enhancements, and patches. Umbraco majors are released twice a year to provide the best possible version and maintain compatibility with .NET. Staying with Umbraco 7 means missing out on the latest developments, potentially hindering your website's performance and capabilities, and leaving you behind the pack.
For example, since version 7, Language Variants have been added, meaning you can manage multilingual content directly in Umbraco. Also, an amazing feature which we often use in our builds is the Block Grid Editor, which allows you to customise the layout and content of your pages to the nth degree.
Later versions of Umbraco since 7 operate using the most current iteration of Microsoft's .NET technology and the latest version of C#. This ensures that you can harness the latest performance enhancements and make the most of the features bundled with these versions.
The Path Forward: Upgrading with Arkom
While Umbraco 7 might have served you well, it's time to consider upgrading to a newer version to ensure the security and compliance of your website as well as keep you on the cutting edge of Umbraco's capabilities.
At Arkom, we're here to assist you in this transition. We currently create sites with Umbraco 10, which is in Long-term Support, and we plan to begin using the brand spanking new Umbraco 13 in the near future.
Bear in mind, a further incentive is that with an upgrade, you will see improved performance on your site. Website speed and performance are critical factors that affect user engagement and search engine rankings; with an upgrade, your site will become faster and more responsive, in turn leading to happier visitors, and more of them!
Planning Your Umbraco Upgrade
Upgrading from Umbraco 7 to a newer version may seem like a significant task, but with the right strategy and support from Arkom, it can be a smooth process. Let us help you embark on a smooth and secure journey forward with Umbraco CMS.
Here are some steps we follow:
1. Assess Your Current Website
We'll begin by evaluating your existing website built on Umbraco 7. With you, we'll identify its strengths and weaknesses, as well as any specific functionalities that you want to retain or improve.
2. Develop a Migration Plan
A well-structured migration plan is essential to ensure a seamless transition. This plan will outline tasks, timelines, and responsibilities, ensuring that nothing is overlooked during the upgrade process.
3. Move the Site Over to a New Version
Our developers get to work building your website and making many subtle improvements behind the scenes along the way.
4. SEO Considerations
During the upgrade, we pay attention to SEO elements such as URL structure, meta tags and redirects. Ensuring that your SEO remains intact is vital for maintaining search engine rankings.
5. Test Thoroughly
Once the upgrade is complete, we thoroughly test your website to ensure that all functionalities work as expected. We address any issues promptly to minimize disruptions and then pass the site on to you for you to do your own testing.
6. Training and Support
Once any final amends have been made, we provide training to your team members or content editors on the new Umbraco version. We maintain a line of communication with you for ongoing support and assistance.
Conclusion: Embrace the Future with Umbraco
Umbraco 7 reached its End-of-Life date on September 30th, so the time to act is now. We hope you're now well-informed of how this could impact your site, and we are always here to help when it comes to Umbraco!
Arkom are committed to ensuring that your website thrives in the ever-evolving digital landscape. With our expertise and the power of Umbraco, your online presence can not only remain secure and compliant but also stand out with cutting-edge features and performance.