Lets talk about Magento 1 end of life in 2020 and what this means for merchants using Magento 1.
The official line from Adobe is shown below…
For Magento Commerce 1 (formerly known as Enterprise Edition):
For Magento Commerce 1, we are providing software support through June 2020. Depending on your version, software support may include both quality fixes and security patches. Please review our Magento Software Lifecycle Policy to see how your version of Magento Commerce 1 is supported.
For Magento Open Source 1 (formerly known as Community Edition):
For Magento Open Source 1, we are providing software security patches through June 2020 to ensure those sites remain secure and compliant. Please visit our Legal Terms page and review our Magento Open Source Software Maintenance Policy to see which versions of Magento Open Source 1 continue to receive software security maintenance.
Magento software support and/or security maintenance apply only to Magento software and does not apply to third-party extensions or customizations. Maintenance of extensions, customization or other modifications to the Magento codebase, including compliance with security and privacy standards (PCI, SOC, ISO, etc.), are the express responsibility of the merchant.
We encourage all Magento Commerce 1 customers to reach out to their Customer Success Managers or development partners to start their upgrade planning as soon as possible.
But what does this really mean for Magento merchants using Magento Open Source 1?
It’s tricky. If you have a real simple implementation on Magento 1, then its going to be very easy to upgrade to Magento 2 in theory and avoid the Magento 1 end of life.
If you have a complex customised store with integrations and multiple storefronts, its all doable but there will be a lot of technical debt to consider, and costs can easily end up matching or exceeding the original build costs!
But even then, is it the right choice to upgrade your Magento Open Source when we don’t have clear sight of Adobe’s plans for the platform?
Magento Open Source Support Breakdown
So the support breakdown for open source means that Magento 1 merchants will get security fixes but no quality fixes. What does this mean? Well again its not black and white. The security fixes will apply specifically to the Magento code and will not cover the legion of now often defunct plugins for Magento 1. So, from a security perspective your sire could be hacked via a plugin even if the Magento application patching is up to date. Is your head hurting yet?
Quality fixes probably means features. So whilst you can stay on Magento 1 until June 2020, you won’t get any of the shiny new stuff.
Look let’s be honest, they’ve told us its security oatching until June 2020, but it ‘aint supported, so Magento 1 is kind of dead already right?
PHP 5.6 is end of life in December 2018
This is going to complicate things further because Magento 1 doesn’t support PHP 7. Adobe have not been quite as public about this, but they are going to have to release a patch real soon to the developer community as there are likely to be a lot of plugins and custom code that will not be supported and therefore require mods.
Additionally there will be a number of hosting companies that might charge to upgrade the OS to support PHP7, and then there is potential downtime to consider.
Its also worth noting that its going to have to be PHP 7.2 really. But there is some good news. PHP 7 is super quick in comparison to 5.
What do I do now?
Well, with the Magento 1 end of life announcement out in the open it must be time to at least plan for a migration to Magento 2 Open Source, and if that is something you are open to my advice would be to get planning sooner rather than later as the land rush for migrations will soon be upon us, and the typical migration into Magento 2 isn’t always plain sailing.
Of course there are options, and these should definitely be considered. Shopify and Shopify Plus are very easy migrations from Magento, and the liquid theming and Ruby scripting now allow for a vast level of customisation. No security patching or hosting to manage with this platform letting merchants focus on what they are good at – selling!
Then there is Woo Commerce if you like WordPress and Visual Composer, its a great choice for simpler stores, but you still need to patch regularly and pay for reliable hosting.
If you want to look at a migration for your store across to Magento 2 or into Shopify or Woo Commerce, give us a shout for some friendly advice from the agency that’s been living through this for the past 2 years!