Improved PHP support
This month, most of the focus has been on the major task of improving support for the latest versions of PHP, up to PHP 8.2. As you can imagine this brought many extra and unexpected challenges, but we now feel that we are over most of these and have a CRM that is working well up to PHP 8.2.
There are still challenges ahead, and the plan now is to address many of the additional warning notices and deprecation logs – which the new versions of PHP brings. This is not a problem when using SuiteCRM, but an important issue to address to avoid filling up logs and to make it easier to bring compatibility to new versions of PHP in the future.
Under the Hood Changes
In addition to the PHP compatibility improvements, another important upcoming change in the underlying platform is a major upgrade to the templating engine used in SuiteCRM 7.x – Smarty. With the upgrade to Smarty 4 you are unlikely to notice any visible changes, but what we should see are some minor performance improvements and better compatibility going forward.
7.14 Beta Release
With most of the work now completed for the system update, we will be releasing the first beta within the first few weeks of July. However, if anyone is keen to try out the latest changes ahead of time and help us test them, head over to GitHub where the more technical among you can check out and setup the alpha build of 7.14 – Check it out here.
Anyone wanting to get involved can follow the instructions set out in last month’s update. We are mainly looking for people to help us test the CRM running on the newer version of PHP for any errors or new usability issues.
8.4 and beyond
In addition to the major change above, we are continuing to work on many of the UI and developer improvements to the 8.x platform that we highlighted last month. We hope to bring a beta release for 8.4 later this month also.
In addition, work has started on ‘under the hood’ changes for the 8.x platform, with upgrades planned for both Symfony and Angular, which we hope to see in a release coming soon.
For all current users of SuiteCRM, we are preparing to publish a maintenance release in the week commencing July 10th that will include a number of important fixes, many of which were resolved by our community.