Updated March 1, 2022. Direct from Drupal:
We are announcing that moving forward, the scheduled Drupal 7 End-of-Life date will be re-evaluated annually. As of today, we are extending the end-of-life by one year to November 1, 2023.
The Drupal project lead, Dries Buytaert, the Drupal Association, and the Drupal Security Working Group have been monitoring the Drupal 7 ecosystem since the previous end-of-life extension. As a majority of all sites in the Drupal project are still on Drupal 7, we have decided that there is a clear need to provide additional support to the members of our community still using this version. At the end of the day, we have a moral imperative to keep as many of those sites secure as we can.
We will announce by July 2023 whether we will extend Drupal 7 community support an additional year. Factors that we will consider are community support, Drupal 7 usage, and active Drupal 7 maintainers. Current support is made possible thanks to the many Drupal 7 maintainers and companies that are paying to support Drupal 7.
Drupal has been the website platform of choice for many businesses ever since it came on the market back in 2000, and for good reason. It’s flexible, customizable, scalable, secure, and powerful. For these reasons, Drupal has been the CMS of choice for Universities, Businesses of all shapes and sizes, non-profits, government agencies, and more. Currently there are over 1,000,000 websites operating on Drupal, and it’s the third most popular website platform in the world.
End of Support for Drupal 7
Drupal continues to be frequently updated and comes out with new versions offering enhanced functionality, security fixes, and more. As they advance technologically with new versions, support for older versions gradually phases out. To this end, the Drupal Association officially announced that support for Drupal 7 will end in November 2023. As of this date, there will be no security updates, further developments, or improvements made by Drupal. Individual developers may still volunteer to support Drupal 7 via their own efforts, but there will be no official support.
Unofficial Community Support for Drupal 7
The unofficial Drupal community is very large and active, and you do have the option of depending on the community for continued unofficial support of your Drupal 7 website. Many DIY developers and small businesses rely on this approach, hoping that the community will keep 10+ year old website platforms safe and operational. But since this is voluntary support provided by individual developers, and not official support from Drupal itself, there’s no guarantee that the support will continue. There is also the risk that support performed by the community will not be maintained which can leave your website at greater risk of security breaches, functionality issues, and breakdowns.
Migrating from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9
Migrating from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9 isn’t as easy as going from Drupal 8 to Drupal 9 because Drupal 7 is built on an entirely different codebase, which requires a site rebuild. The rebuild does come with some great opportunities for your website such as the ability to boost your website’s speed, improved admin, install new marketing technologies, and improve search engine presence.
A Drupal 9 Migration is Worth the Investment
There are many benefits of migrating from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9.
Drupal 9 has an updated and more revamped content authoring experience consisting of an easy-to-use WYSIWYG editor and in-context editing, which not only simplifies the editing process but also makes it a whole lot of fun.
Faster and hassle-free content delivery. The dynamic features added in Drupal 9 play into the enhanced flexibility, besides making work easier for businesses with a heavy workload and limited staff.
Extensive multilingual features. Drupal 9’s dashboard has a built-in translation feature that makes it easy to add translations to your content.
Drupal 9 is more SEO-friendly.
Drupal 9 allows businesses to overcome technical hurdles and make instant changes to their websites without incurring any issues. More features and speed efficiency also play a critical role in increasing conversions.
Considering CMS Options Besides Drupal 9?
Because Drupal 9 may not be the right solution for all, let's talk about other options. If you are looking to switch CMS platforms, we suggest you talk with one of August Ash’s Strategic Account Managers to evaluate your options.
Let’s Migrate Your Old Drupal 7 Website
The first thing we do before migrating any website is to meet with you to understand how your new website will serve your business and further align your 4 Pillars. Our 4 Pillars approach aligns your Strategy, Sales, Marketing, and Technology to further identify areas of opportunity and further alignment.
If you’d like advice on what to do with your Drupal 7 website, contact August Ash for a Free Website Evaluation and 4 Pillars Consultation.