Just how popular is Drupal these days? According to one recent study, Drupal provides the foundation for at least 14% of the top 10,000 most popular websites around the world. This is in addition to powering 1.2% of the top 10 million sites globally. When you also consider that it had a community of nearly 1.4 million people as of 2022, with over 120,000 of them actively contributing to its open-source framework, it is easy to see how Drupal has become something of a force to be reckoned with over the years.
That is also part of the reason it is so exciting that Drupal 10 has finally arrived. Released on December 15, 2022, it supplants the last major release of 8.9.20 that was released in December 2021 and will replace Drupal 9, which will meet its end-of-life in November 2023. But why is Drupal 10 so notable and is it worth the effort to upgrade your own system? The answers to questions like these and more require you to keep a few key things in mind.
What’s New in Drupal 10?
To say that Drupal 10 represents a major upgrade compared to what had come before it is, at this point, a bit of an understatement. All told, Drupal 10 offers several key features, including but not limited to ones like:
- A new Claro administration theme has been made available, replacing the previous Seven theme.
- There is a new Olivero default theme, replacing the previous Bartik theme.
- Drupal 10 also introduces CKEditor 5, which promises to yield a better authoring experience across the board thanks to an interface that is optimized with modern editing techniques in mind. Note that this replaces CKEditor 4 entirely.
- Theme Starterkit tools were added to help facilitate effective theme creation for as many people as possible.
- Symfony 6 has been added under the hood, which replaces the previous Symfony 4 release.
- PHP version 8.1 is now required to keep your Drupal system and anything you create with it as secure as possible.
In addition to new features, there have been many removals with this latest version of Drupal, although developers say much of this will not impact development. In terms of frontend dependency changes, for example, the public Backbone and Underscore core libraries have been eliminated. They are only for internal use moving forward.
There have also been a wide range of PHP dependencies removed, including certain versions of Diactoros, Laminas Feed, EasyRDF, and others.
To find out more about absolutely everything that has changed in this version of Drupal 10 (and to stay up to date with what will be added to minor releases in the coming weeks and months), view the Drupal.org release notes here.
Drupal 10 Migration Instructions
One of the most important things to understand about the Drupal 10 migration process is that, once deployed, you must keep up with minor core releases. Developers have stated that this is the best way to prepare for any major upgrade, but especially true which Drupal 10.
According to Drupal’s own website, upgrades to Drupal 10 are possible from Drupal 9.4 or later. To get started, you will want to use one of the available deprecations checking and correction tools to prepare for moving from one version of Drupal to the next. These will help you identify and address any deprecations that have occurred in your code base over time.
Then, if you are not currently running Drupal 9.4, you will need to follow that upgrade path first. There are several ways to go about this depending on which version you are coming from:
- Upgrading a Drupal 7 site to Drupal 9.
- Upgrading a Drupal.org project to Drupal 9.
- Transitioning a Drupal 8 project to move from Twig 1 to Twig 2.
Again, all of this is essential to help make sure that your site or project is already compatible with Drupal 9. At that point, little effort is required to move from Drupal 9 to Drupal 10.
Thankfully, the actual upgrade process is simple. To get to the latest version from an existing deployment, simply open the Composer and use the following command:
- composer update “Drupal/core-*” –with-all-dependencies
Then, all you must do is wait for the process to complete, and you will be ready to take advantage of all the new features and functionality that Drupal 10 brings with it.
Note that if you want to start a new project using Drupal 10 as your foundation, you will open the Composer and use the following command:
- Composer create-project Drupal/recommended-project:10.0.0 “install-dir”
This, too, is a viable solution.
While it is recommended that you use the Composer to perform this migration, you can also do so manually if you so choose. This is for people who are unfamiliar with or uncomfortable with command lines and who are not interested in learning the finer workings of the Composer. This is also a way for someone without shell access to perform the upgrade.
Additional Considerations About Drupal 10
It is important to note that Drupal 10 was released at the same time as Drupal 9.5.0. While the latter release has most of the changes and features that the former does, it also maintains true backwards compatibility with certain previous versions. As a Drupal development company, we recommend that you always pick Drupal 10 if you have the option. It will help make sure that any new project you create today will always be compatible with future versions. However, there may be certain scenarios where this is impossible and if that is the case, Drupal 9.5.0 still represents a significant upgrade over its previous versions.
In the end, Drupal 10 continues its long tradition of delivering state-of-the-art capabilities including account registration and maintenance, RSS feeds, the ability to customize page layouts, system administration and much, much more. When you consider what a major leap forward Drupal 10 represents to what originally began as a straightforward open-source project all the way back in 2001, it truly is exciting to think about the possibilities that future releases will bring to us all.