Drupal 10, 11 and Dries

YouTube Drupal Association

Drupal 10 is on the horizon, and with the recent news that it will be released in December, the anticipation of what changes to expect has increased.

When Dries Buytaert, Drupal founder and Acquia co-founder and CTO, took the stage to deliver the Driesnote for DrupalCon Portland 2022, he focused on two major points: Drupal 10 and Drupal 11. With Drupal 10 being on track, he felt that planning for Drupal 11 was indeed important.

Ashlee Noland, who was filling in for Acting Executive Director Angie Sabin, introduced the session. She began by talking about what's happening in Ukraine and showed the resources one can use to support Ukraine. She said,

"We stand with you and hold you in our thoughts."

She then talked about DrupalCon Prague, opening its registration soon. She also said they are planning North America DrupalCon 2023 in Pittsburgh from 5th to 9th June.

After this, Ashlee briefly talked about Discover Drupal, which is the Drupal Association’s first scholarship and training program, and congratulated the first Discover Drupal Cohort, Devon, Nadia, Jose, and Joseph, who were present at the conference. 

To humanize the Drupal Association, Tim Hestenes talked more about the members of the Drupal Association. He also spoke about the five pillars of strategic vision that the Drupal Association wants to accomplish for the Drupal community. He explained a few of their achievements and mentioned a few of the engineering initiatives taken by them.

This was when the most awaited speaker, Dries, came to the stage to give Driesnote DrupalCon Portland 2022. He started by saying it feels good to be back, as the passion and the love for Drupal that is visible during these days is difficult to get online. 

He then talked about Russia’s attack on Ukraine and stated clearly that he, the Drupal Association, and the Drupal community condemn the Russian attack. He went on to say that Ukraine is very important to the Drupal community as Ukraine is the 6th most actively contributing country.

Top Countries Contributing to Drupal

They used the credit system to measure the contributions and develop a list of the top contributing countries. If we take the total number of contributions for each country and divide it by the number of people who live in that country, then they might be number one or number two. This shows how important the Ukraine community is for the success of the Drupal community. He also showed a few messages from the Ukraine community that they had received with help from Baddy Sonja.

The Driesnote can be summed up into Drupal 10 and Drupal 11.

Dries started by saying that the Drupal 10 release date has now been moved to December 2022 as they need more time to work on CKEditor. They are upgrading to CKEditor 5, a complete rewrite of CKEditor with no backward compatibility or upgrade path. It’s like moving from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8. After working for 1000s of hours to upgrade to CKEditor 5, it is working pretty well. But, there is little more work to be done. They are working closely with CKSource, the company behind CKEditor. The result would be that it would be easy for everybody who uses Drupal to upgrade from CKeditor 4 to CKeditor 5.

Dries gave a few updates on Drupal 10 and mentioned that Drupal 10 would update Symfony, a PHP framework that Drupal relies heavily on. The update would be from Symphony 4 to Symfony 6.2, which is the latest and the greatest framework, according to Dries. Symfony 6.2 hasn’t been released yet, but it will release in time for Drupal 10. This will enable the developers to get access to the latest features of Symfony, but for those using custom modules or their modules, they need to think about upgrading them.

Dries then talked about increasing the minimum requirements for PHP. They will bring it to 8.1 because Symfony 6.2 would require PHP 8.1. As a reminder for all those who use custom code, they will need to upgrade their codes to PHP 8.1. One can start upgrading the codes from today, as Drupal 9.3 supports PHP 8.1.

As the Drupal 10 release has been postponed, they will release Drupal 9.4 in June and Drupal 9.5 in December. 9.5 will be the same as Drupal 10 minus the backward compatibility layers. 

The final reminder is that Drupal 9 reaches the end of life in November 2023, which means that after the release of Drupal 10 you will have 11 months to upgrade. However, according to Dries, it will be the easiest upgrade in the History of Drupal.

He gave data points to prove that. He said,

“On the day we released Drupal 9, 71% of the deprecated API users in contributed projects had automated fixes. Today 93% of the deprecations have automated fixes, and we haven’t released Drupal 10 yet.”

He hopes that the number will go even higher by the time they release Drupal 10. 

Once the Drupal 10 updates were done Dries went into detail on some of the new and exciting changes in Drupal 10. He covered Olivero, Claro, Starterkit, moving themes and modules from core to Contrib, CKEditor 5, and Automated updates.

When Dries mentioned Drupal 11, he said that though to some this might sound like a crazy idea to talk about, we will still talk about it. Now that things with Drupal 10 seem to be moving in the right direction, it’s time to start working and developing Drupal 11. He talked in detail about their purpose, vision, strategy, and initiatives through his talk.

In the end Dries said that embracing web components, completely rebuilding the UI of Drupal in a Decoupled way, and redesigning Fields, CCK, and Views UI will help Drupal. But, these are big projects that will take 3-4 people for over a year. In order to get more organizations to contribute, the Drupal Association is working on the Certified Partner Program and combining it with the credit system so that there are organizations that will have a dedicated number of people working on one of these initiatives or projects.

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