Drupal 8 brought new innovation to the way that content and configuration are stored in the database, but it is time for the next version of Drupal. Drupal 8 end of life is scheduled for November 2, 2021. With this end of life being just a few short months away, now is the time to migrate to Drupal 9.
The first thing we want to cover is that Drupal 8’s end of life is different from Drupal 7’s end of life. It is important to make sure you know what version of Drupal you are on so you can prepare for these two separate end of life dates. Drupal 7's end of life on November 28, 2022, is an extended date due to COVID-19. Acquia will provide separate end of life information on Drupal 7.
It is also important to note that an upgrade to Drupal 9 is similar to a minor release of Drupal 8. This is a key difference from previous major version upgrades, like Drupal 7 to 8, which had a larger architectural change. An upgrade from Drupal 8 to 9 is more similar to a minor version of Drupal core, but with the removal of long-planned deprecations. Drupal 8 users can make use of the Upgrade Status module to audit their remediation efforts. Then, the update from Drupal 8 to 9 can be performed with an update of core. Since this is more of an upgrade and less like a migration, it can be completed in just five easy steps.
- Make sure your environment is compatible with the requirements for Drupal 9.
- Next, update core to the latest Drupal 8 version. Upgrades from 8.8 and 8.9 are supported.
- Update contributed projects until they are Drupal 9 compatible.
- Remove deprecated API use in custom code.
- Update Drupal core to Drupal 9. DONE!
Please note that not all community modules have become Drupal 9 ready. We strongly encourage customers to look for patches and contribute patches where gaps arise.
Acquia product support closely aligns with community standards. As such, our products offer full support for the current major/minor release of Drupal. Many Acquia products already have Drupal 8 support and will receive updates for Drupal 9. While Acquia will no longer support Drupal 8 specific needs, support will continue for Acquia-specific integrations in Drupal 9 that are commonly shared with Drupal 8. Cloud Platform services, like PHP, MySQL and more currently have support for Drupal 8 and will be subjected to their own product-specific end of life policies. Acquia routinely removes platform-level packages that have reached their end of life.
If you're looking for more information on upgrading from Drupal 8 to Drupal 9, check out our resource page.