[TYPO3-core] Official information about the upcoming LTS version

Michael Stucki michael.stucki at typo3.org
Mon Oct 1 14:30:00 CEST 2012

Hi Francois,

> Starting with the original question:
> I think it's Jigal who reminded us of the original reason for having LTS
> and that was good. I think that - retrospectively - it was a good choice
> from the point of view of development: we could have a stable release
> for several years and that gave us the freedom to make more important
> changes after that. I'm not sure we would have had the 6.0 that is in
> the making if we couldn't "rely" on the rock-stable 4.5.
> As others have said, our marketing team and our clients just loved LTS.
> This was an unplanned side-effect, but it makes a lot of sense, as
> clients don't like to pay for upgrades which - most of the time - bring
> new features that are not useful for them. Our clients are not
> heat-seeking geeks.

And that does still apply...

> Now I still think that the 6-months release cycle is too short. We end
> up *not* using most of the TYPO3 versions, all the more so because
> there's 4.5 LTS. Ever since 4.5 was released we built a single web site
> with 4.6, because that release contained a feature that was critical for
> this client. The only site running 4.7 is our company's own, which was
> more like a test than anything else. We have a couple of clients
> currently going through the upgrade process, which is not entirely smooth.

In our case, we almost skipped 4.6 and produced mainly 4.5 websites in
that time. Recently though, we're back at 4.7 because the support
lifetime is almost equal (almost)...

> We are not considering upgrading any client to 6.0. We will certainly do
> small sites with that upcoming version, but the uncertainty about DAM is
> a killer for large sites. Of course you could say our clients could pay
> for helping develop DAM 2.0, but what is their need since they have a
> nice 4.5 LTS running for 2 more years yet?

I agree about DAM, also have some question marks there. But we'll see
how far we come with FAL only, for now at least...

Anyway, I think that this is why there should be a new LTS soon, and not
in 2 years from now. Clients who are running LTS already need a
successor version that has the same quality in terms of stability,
security, and support...

> I agree that maintaining a LTS version requires more resources. But I
> also think that release so many major versions so often is a waste of
> resources too. I would like to work far more strictly with minor and
> major versions. 6.1, 6.2, etc. should contain new features that don't
> break anything, that don't bring major changes to DB, API, rendering,
> etc. Big changes should be slated for 7.0.

Don't think so. 7.0 is too far away from now, and having a new CMS on
the horizon, it also means we shouldn't plan too many groundbreaking
changes in the near future of TYPO3. We did this for 6.0 now, but I
think we need to switch back into maintenance mode, accompanied with
smaller, but more useful, improvements for end users (like we did
between 4.0 and 4.7...).

> And of course - by the time - I hope not to have to deal with 7.0 but
> with Phoenix...

That hits the point.

> To sum up my thoughts: yes, we should have another LTS, as it is really
> appreciated by clients. This LTS should happen in the 6.x branch and
> should be the end of it. Further developments would go to the 7.x branch.

I think I can agree but I'm not entirely sure I understand your last
sentence correctly. IMHO we will have many 6.x versions just like we
used to have 4.x versions, and some of them might be LTS releases. I
wouldn't start any plans for a 7.x branch yet as this is something we
will hopefully not need:

6.0 => 2012 / 10
6.1 => 2013 / 04
6.2 => 2013 / 10 (LTS?)
6.3 => 2014 / 04
6.4 => 2014 / 10
6.5 => 2015 / 04
6.6 => 2015 / 10
6.7 => 2016 / 04 (LTS?)
6.8 => 2016 / 10
6.9 => 2017 / 04
6.10 => 2017 / 10

And in 5 years from now I really hope that nobody still wants to use
TYPO3 (the "old" CMS) for new projects, but wants to use Phoenix
instead... (If not, then we can discuss again about a 7.0 version...)

- michael

Michael Stucki
TYPO3 Core Team member

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