We've just installed Drupal 9 and given the Coherence website a refresh. You're looking at it right now!
It was a two step process:
- We installed it.
- It worked.
So, what is the big deal with Drupal 9? Well, in some respects, the big deal is that it should not be a big deal.
Drupal has moved from a roadmap process that favoured large architectural shifts from version to version, to a model that favours smaller, and more frequent, iterative enhancements on the same core code base. To achieve this, the underlying architecture that powered Drupal 7 core was deprecated and replaced with the Symfony web framework now underpinning Drupal 8. Long story short, the shift was akin to replacing the foundations of your house.
So the shift from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8 has been significant, and each site upgrade has in effect required a rebuild. But now that effort has been completed, we are now able to see the benefits. We talked about this last year in a little more detail.
Why is this important?
- We want long range on Drupal roadmaps so we can plan
- We want to add cool new functionality on a regular basis without having to re-platform
- We want to focus our investment on cool new functionality, not re-platforming every 3 years
- We want to be enterprise-ready for things we can't predict (and there's been a lot of that about recently)
With the Drupal 8 to Drupal 9 upgrade, we can see the first proof of this change. The upgrade took an existing D8 website, database and filesystem and upgraded to the next major Drupal version. No rebuild was required, and while we did have work carefully through configuration changes and regression test across the site's functionality, the upgrade was smooth and the code works. We're also very happy to see Acquia Site Studio working very effectively in Drupal 9.