Farewell Umbraco 8

Official end-of-life for Umbraco 8 is February 24th, 2025. Find out what to consider when thinking about an upgrade below.

Farewell Umbraco 8

Since its introduction in 2019, Umbraco 8 has been a trusty companion for countless websites. It’s like that reliable friend who’s always there when you need them—steady, adaptable, and ready to tackle content management challenges. 

Now, let’s talk about the grand finale, the End-of-Life (EOL)! Hang on - maybe the dependable friend analogy doesn’t work so well here – er, thanks AI author! OK instead, let’s imagine it as the closing act of a spectacular show. After the EOL date, Umbraco 8 takes a graceful bow, stepping off the stage of active support. No more encore performances, no security patches. But hey, it’s had a fantastic run!  

If you’re currently using Umbraco 8, it’s crucial to start considering your next steps RIGHT NOW —whether that involves an upgrade, migration, or even a complete rebuild. As an Umbraco Gold Partner, we can guide you through this process and help you make informed decisions.

How serious a condition is EOL? 

Technically, you can continue using Umbraco 8 after its EOL date. However, there are risks associated with this choice: 

  1. Security Risks: Without active support, your website may become vulnerable to security threats. Outdated software is much more susceptible to attacks. 
  2. Compliance Concerns: Your company’s policies may require you to avoid using end-of-life software. Not upgrading could lead to policy violations. 
  3. Lack of New Features: Staying on Umbraco 8 means missing out on the new features available in later versions. For instance, Umbraco 13 introduces a content delivery API for syndicating content to other sources (websites, apps, or intranets). 
  4. Compatibility Issues: Older Umbraco versions may not align well with newer systems, browsers, or plugins, resulting in functional limitations and integration complications. 
  5. Website Performance: Remaining on Umbraco 8 post-EOL could slow down site load times and negatively impact SEO and user experience. Upgrading ensures better performance and user satisfaction. 

Lucky number 13 

As a rule, you should consider upgrading to the most recent version of Umbraco. At this time, that means moving from Umbraco 8 to Umbraco 13. Umbraco 13 is the newest long-term supported (LTS) version, built in alignment with the latest LTS versions of Microsoft .NET 8 and C# 12. This ensures a secure and forward-compatible platform for your website until December 2026. 

Umbraco 10 is supported until June 2025. Umbraco 14 is currently in the release candidate phase, which means it’s close to being finalised for official release. 

How big a project is an upgrade? 

Upgrading from Umbraco 8 to a newer version varies in complexity. Key factors include your site’s current state, custom functionalities, and integrations. With the release of Umbraco 9, the codebase shifted to ASP.NET Core. As a result, an upgrade from Umbraco 8 to 13 must be completed in stages. Existing content can be migrated from your database, but templates may need adjustments, and custom code will require rewriting. 

Some clients choose to review content, information architecture, and UX during the upgrade process. If you’re considering this, rebuilding your site in Umbraco 13 is a viable option. An updated design often leads to new content components and page layouts, requiring the recreation of document types in Umbraco. Rebuilding can be cost-effective and yield better results. 

Upgrading to Umbraco 13 

We recommend building your website using Umbraco’s latest stable long-term support (LTS) version, which is Umbraco 13.  

Here are some features of Umbraco 13: 

  • WebP Support (Images): Enhances page speed and strengthens SEO by supporting the WebP image format. 
  • Block Grid Editor: Introduces drag-and-drop editing with components and content, streamlining marketing campaigns and content management. 
  • Umbraco Forms Improvements: Makes form creation easier and offers more flexibility. 
  • Security Enhancements: Improved protection against cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks and other vulnerabilities. 
  • Headless Capabilities: The content and media delivery API allow you to push content to multiple platforms. 
  • Speed Improvements: Overall, Umbraco 13 provides a faster and better website experience for users. 

When should you start your Umbraco upgrade? 

KLAXON! Begin the upgrade process as soon as possible. This allows time to: 

  • Assign people and resources to the project 
  • Review your current website and wider digital strategy 
  • Conduct comprehensive testing and onboarding 
  • Confirm everything is ready for a smooth launch 

Considering a redesign? 

When you combine an upgrade with a website redesign, it can offer several benefits. Although it may require more investment and time, a redesign allows for greater flexibility and the opportunity to address technical challenges.  

A redesign ensures that your website stays current and aligns with modern user expectations. 

  • A redesign allows you to rethink the user journey and improve overall UX. You can optimize navigation, streamline content, and enhance accessibility. 
  • During a redesign, you can review and update your content. Remove outdated information, add new content, and ensure consistency. 
  • A redesign allows you to reinforce your brand identity. Update logos, colours, and typography to maintain consistency. 
  • Upgrading Umbraco often involves technical enhancements. A redesign ensures that your site leverages these improvements fully. You can optimize code, improve performance, and enhance security. 
  • A well-executed redesign can positively impact SEO. Clean code, improved site speed, and mobile responsiveness contribute to better search rankings. 
  • Ensure your website aligns with your current business goals. 

How ClerksWell can help 

Remember, Umbraco 8 has had its moment in the spotlight, but it’s time to embrace the future with Umbraco 13! If you need guidance or assistance, as an Umbraco Gold Partner, we’re here to help you make informed decisions. Let’s ensure your website continues to shine on the digital stage! 

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