This is a contributor post written by Marek Jankowski, a Magento Developer expert who works as part of our Eclipse Magento / Adobe Commerce Team.

The most recognisable eCommerce support system on the market, Adobe Commerce, has ended its support for PHP 7.4. It is now fully concentrated on its newest Adobe Commerce version, 2.4.5 which is run on PHP 8.1. What does this new upgrade promise? To improve system speed, security and simplicity for shop owner facilitation. Adobe Commerce has given its final call to upgrade outdated commerce store versions, with delays warned against to prevent serious security or data leaks for those left unprotected.

The Adobe Commerce 2.4.5 release is crucial for eCommerce customers, as this version supports PHP 8.1. The end of support for PHP 7.4 and Adobe Commerce 2.4.3 has now happened. This upgrade affects both Adobe Commerce and Magento Open Source shop owners, developers and newcomers, that are thinking about moving their businesses online and are considering Adobe Commerce or Magento Open Source as a solution.

Adobe Commerce Version 2.4.5 was officially released on 9th August 2022. Since 11th October 2022, version 2.4.5-p1 (with security fixes) has been available. Since the 28th of November 2022, PHP version 7.4 (and Adobe Commerce version 2.4.3) have not been supported (meaning there are no security or quality patches released for this version). Adobe policy provides fixes to Adobe Commerce versions until the end of the support date of the PHP version upon which it is based.

 

What Are the Risks of Using an Outdated Version?

So what are the risks of using an unsupported version of Adobe Commerce? As previously mentioned, updates and security patches are no longer provided. Such businesses become exposed to hackers’ attacks and data leaks. Unprotected stores become significantly compromised. Every day with an outdated software version is hazardous and could be extremely costly to the business.

 

What’s New with 2.4.5 and PHP 8?

So what is different with Adobe Commerce 2.4.5? This version is faster, more secure and has a far superior user experience. It brings new features such as Apple Pay for all merchants and a built-in Google Tag module to upgrade to Google Analytics 4. It also fixes over 400 quality issues and many security issues from prior versions. PHP 8 performance is also much faster than the older versions. It is also more secure and brings many new functions and enhancements. Most important are (prepare yourself for some tech talk…) Enums – enumerated type; Attributes – to add metadata to classes instead of docblocks; Constructor property promotion – which simplifies adding Dependency Injection in Magento 2.4.5; JIT – Just In Time Compilation – provides better performance for CPU-heavy applications.

 

What Does An Upgrade Involve?

There are three key areas when dealing with an Adobe Commerce upgrade to be aware of. These are core code, your custom modules and third-party extensions. Each of these requires a different approach, some businesses may require guidance on this process. As a Magento Developer, these are the kinds of projects where my team’s knowledge, experience and specialism ensure these processes run as smoothly as possible, and ensure business as usual may continue in parallel. This change includes an upgrade to PHP 8.1 and ensures all extensions provided for your store tailor-made, or purchased by you, are also compatible with the new version.

How my team would approach this is to ensure that all prerequisites for the upgrade (including software, search engine and proper applications’ versions) are in order, and that store graphic layouts are not impacted by the upgrade, ensuring theme or technologies used on the frontend will remain cohesive with the upgraded version.

 

Who is Affected The Most By This Upgrade?

This change is globally relevant. Any customers already using Adobe Commerce should take stock of their current version, and PHP version, and inform themselves of their current position, and requirements for a safe and secure course of action for protecting their eCommerce assets. If you have any questions or would like to have a chat about what this process could look like more specifically for your businesses, get in touch using our contact form.