What – so soon?

Yes – as we reported earlier Joomla 1.7 is due in July.

Joomla 1.7 is coming

The new rollout schedule has caused a lot of confusion and has unfortunately lacked clarity in the communications regarding several key points. We'd like to help clear up some concerns regarding this new version rollout. This Joomla announcement makes things clearer, and here are the important points you need to know:

Availability:

First off, Joomla 1.7 is due to be released for general availability on July 10, 2011. That’s right around the corner, so if you’re one that likes to be on the forefront of updates, get prepared now.

Upgrading:

Upgrading from a 1.6 site will be fairly easy using the extension manager in the same way that you would perform an upgrade from 1.6.2 to 1.6.3. As always, make sure you backup first.

Upgrading from a 1.5 site will not be so easy. Any extensions you are using will need to be updated too, and not all developers have made their extensions available for 1.6, or 1.7 for that matter. This will most likely be your biggest hurdle. Upgrading Joomla from 1.5 to 1.7 will require the use of the jUpgrade component; however, you will be able to skip 1.6 and go directly to 1.7 when it is released.

Support:

Of course with every new version rollout, an old version will most likely fall out of support. This time around Joomla 1.5 will continue to be supported until April of next year, but 1.6 will not be supported after August 10 of this year.

What should you do?

If you have a 1.6 site, 1.7 is not going to have any major new changes, so there’s no need to upgrade right away. You might like to wait a couple of weeks just in case the new version has some critical bugs, but aim to upgrade before August 10 as that’s when the support for 1.6 officially ends.

If you have a 1.5 site, our previous advice still applies. There is no reason to upgrade unless you’re looking for the extra functionality in 1.6, and now 1.7.  However, support for 1.5 will officially end April of 2012, and it is a good idea to work towards updating before then so your site remains up-to-date and free from any nasties.