One of the most popular platforms on the web — PHP 5 — will stop receiving security updates at the end of the year.
According to The PHP Group, security updates will only be issued for the popular PHP 5.6 branch through the end of this year.
This will have a huge impact on the web at-large and the e-commerce community more specifically. Many popular cart solutions rely upon PHP, including X-cart, Magento, and WooCommerce. Many stores also rely on PHP to run their blogging/news components in the form of CMS tools like WordPress.
“This is a huge problem for the PHP ecosystem,” Scott Arciszewski, Chief Development Officer at Paragon Initiative Enterprise, told ZDNet in an interview. “While many feel that they can ‘get away with’ running PHP 5 in 2019, the simplest way to describe this choice is: Negligent.”
from “Around 62 percent of all Internet sites will run an unsupported PHP version in 10 weeks” (ZDNet, 14 Oct 2018)
What do I do?
If your site is currently operating on PHP 5, you should determine which of the 5.x branches you’re currently using. Updates have ceased for the 5.4 and 5.5 branches of PHP 5 since September 2015 and July 2016 respectively.
How quickly you need to deploy a new version on your site depends upon just how out-of-date you are. Generally speaking, anyone using any branch of PHP 5 should update as soon as possible. If you’re on 5.4 or 5.5, you should contact your hosting provider ASAP.
However, our experience is the moving from PHP 5 to PHP 7 is a non-trivial process. A lot has changed. Some of those changes are very fundamental. Therefore it’s not at all uncommon for us to see sites break when site move from 5 to 7.
Don’t host your site with a provider that automatically
updates major versions of PHP without warning!
BCSE will be migrating our hosted clients to PHP 7 in the coming weeks. We encourage our customers to monitor their inboxes for notification of pending updates. And, as always, don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions along the way.