There are few days to be released Joomla! 2.5 beta, expected on 20 December, and we know that some things are taking shape allowing a glimpse of what will bring the new branch, with these shorter cycles of releases and updates that allow us to print a “roadmap” more active and higher level of correction and, if possible, an optimal level of improvements for this great CMS called Joomla.

One of the first details that are cited is the merging of Platform and CMS which undoubtedly will bring interesting developments in the coming months especially for extension developers and those who want to streamline the core to meet that target either vertical or other needs.

Joomla.org eventually been asked to users and developers to get involved in the project to propose improvements, new features and test this new version with new changes, which in some “forum” has been branded of “transition version” to the stable LTS 3.5 that will be launched in 2012 as an LTS version with 18 months of support.

The date of release Joomla! 2.5 beta will be December 20, 2011 and Joomla! 2.5 GA is released in January 2012 will be supported until 10/19/2013, or 18 months.

You can test the current state of CMS with your favorite extensions and report the existence of bugs in the Tracker.

TEST: The CMS can be downloaded from the repositorio de github”>github repository for testing (not for production sites!).

REPORTS: You can post to the tracker who find bugs or errors to be corrected.

Testing new features (and propose some with attached code, if you wish).

One need not be a PHP expert or guru to test the proposed patches and the effort will help to get your favorite CMS in good shape for the upcoming 2.5 version.

As previously discussed, the 2.5 version is with Long Term Support (LTS) that ends the 1.6/1.7 series.

The upgrade to 2.5 version will be transparent and handled exactly like the upgrade from 1.6 to 1.7 or 1.7.2 to 1.7.3, for example. It is expected that all extensions will work in 2.5 version without modifications, however, extension developers must prove the same for sure.

The Joomla.org Team hopes to get new features for 2.5 version, but invites the community to help with the process.

Some new features that we find in Joomla! 2.5:

  • SQL Server and PostgreSQL support.
  • Phpmailer v2.3 update (php5).
  • Add the option to merge the modified and created lists.
  • Remove globals $mainframe+$option.
  • Enabled installation languages for the frontend plugins.
  • Menu item parameters “Note”.
  • Default text for each language in the syndication module.

There are many options considered and / or implemented for version 2.5 and availables on Joomla Feature Tracker from JoomlaCode (implemented in “Status” column).

Highly recommended to read the article by Jen Kramer in The Joomla! ® Community Magazine explaining important issues on this branch as migration from Joomla! 1.5 o 1.7, time estimates in the migration process, estensions and templates available for Joomla! 2.5, and other to consider.

Read te article “Nine Questions When Preparing Clients for Joomla 2.5” by Jen Kramer.

Another article I recommend reading, written by Matt King in iJoomla.com, in video is documented a number changes with new versions and can be interesting to see for understand what we find from 20 December onwards and over 2013.

Read te article The new Joomla versions roadmap by Matt King.

In the diagram below we see the result chosen for the new versions available from the 2.5 version.

Release 2.5 version (long term – LTS). Subsequently released 3.0 and 3.1 versions short term (eg, 3.0.1 or 3.1.1 are maintenance releases, etc.) And the next release would be 3.5 version (using the number to identify it as liberation X.5 long term – LTS).

Calendar of upcoming releases and changes in versions states:

  • December 20, 2011 – is released Joomla! 2.5 beta version.
  • January 2012 – released Joomla! 2.5 GA Long-term version – LTS (18 months).
  • February 2012 – Joomla! 1.7 reaches end of life and will no longer support.
  • April 2012 – Joomla! 1.5 reaches end of life and will no longer support.
  • July 2012 – is released Joomla! 3.0 version of short-term (up to February 2013).
  • January 2013 – is released Joomla! 3.1 version of short-term (up to August 2013).
  • July 2013 – is released Joomla! 3.5 version long term (18 months).

You can visit the discussion groups that discussed the strategy of the new versions if you want more information or read more about Development Strategy of Joomla! for years to come.

While it is true that the arrival of new versions as Joomla! 2.5 does not generate the buzz is generated by the Joomla! 1.6 release we expect that users, developers, implementers and supporters of Joomla! can enjoy all its benefits, improvements and virtues that enable them to take their projects to better quality and stability stadium needed in these times.

And you: what you ask Joomla! 2.5 or 3.5?..    

Thanks for your time and support: Adrian Prado (Venezuela) – Hils Cheyne (UK).

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