PHP 5.6 is now at the end of its life

While the general man on the street has no idea, or even cares what version of PHP their website is running on, it has a massive effect on their digital presence and with PHP 5.6 coming to the end of its life many hosts are disposing of it and opting for PHP 7.x. How will this affect you and your business?

Firstly let’s look at What is PHP ?

PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely-used open source general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML

What PHP 5.6 End of Life (EOL) Means

PHP 5.6 End of Life (EOL) means that this PHP version will no longer receive any security updates or bug fixes. There has been fixes and updates throughout the life cycle of PHP, and for PHP 5.6 these will stop.

Your PHP application and website will continue to continue working on Php5.6

Is your Website going to Crash on PHP7? 1

But… if there are any security vulnerabilities discovered after the EOL date, they will not be fixed. This will leave your website, web application, an e-commerce store or blog vulnerable to potentially getting hacked.

If your host has decided to terminate PHP 5.6 they will automatically upgrade your hosting account and in all likelihood this will “break” your website as many of the older websites do not support PHP 7 and above as there are fundamental differences in the code.

Several well known hosts have already indicated that they will be terminating PHP 5.6 completely at the end of November 2019.

Why are so many websites still running the older PHP 5 versions ?

Let’s look at why this may be. It will give us some insights as to why you may have not upgraded yet.

  • The main reason is that business owners don’t understand the technology behind their website or applications. Much of this technical stuff has been left to the developer or website host.
  • Budget is a factor is the slow adoption of newer versions of PHP. It takes programmers time to modify the code and test the application in new versions of PHP. You simply can’t just simply upgrade the server without testing or modifying the code. Programmer time to do this comes down to budget.
  • Time for testing and upgrading. Developers have to test their code and applications in the latest version before they can roll out new code updates. Some functionality of the application may need to be rewritten and modified. The more complex the application and code the more time it takes to complete.
  • Web Hosts don’t want to break compatibility. Web hosts are not responsible for maintaining the website and application code. So, although most web hosts will provide the option to upgrade the server, they were not pushing clients to do this, because if they push the PHP update on the server and it breaks the website, and this will result in increased support calls and tickets for the web host, but they now really have no choice and are forced to do so due to the vulnerabilities created on the servers running PHP5.6.

At SDDS Wed Design we currently run PHP 5.6 as an option but will also be terminating it at the end of November 2019 and you are welcome to get in touch with us if you would like us to check if your site is compatible or if you would like us to give you an obligation free quote on upgrading your site to a more modern design and making it mobile friendly and compatible with the latest PHP Versions.

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