Looming PHP 7 & Its Effect on WordPress
It is no more a secret anymore that PHP 7 has gained a lot of popularity, more than its previous versions. There are some questions which arise while developing with this advance version of PHP such as how it will affect sites which run on WordPress.
PHP 7 is no doubt an advance update for server-side web development language, and not in PHP but it’s going to impact a lot on other PHP-powered CMS like Drupal, Joomla, and Magento.
Upgrades in Performances
The biggest performance upgrade in PHP 7 is the direct response to all the criticism for all the past performance issues for the platform. This new PHP 7 release will give a 50% increase for the apps and will be quicker than HHVM.
This latest new update is twice as fast as PHP 5.x. PHP 7 executes codes faster and requires only few servers to manage the same quantity of requests each second. For example, WordPress homepage now requires 72% fewer instructions to execute than previously.
Latest & Improved Operators
The two operators that make their debut on PHP 7 are Spaceship and Null Coalescing. The former makes the designers chained comparison briefer while the latter is supposed to check if something exists.
Function Type Clues
In PHP 7, you are now allowed to use Boolean, Integers, Floats and strings as function type hints. In addition to that, you can even declare a function’s return type. This will help in preventing you from passing and returning the wrong types from functions.
Exceptions added in this latest release of PHP 7 engine will help designers to handle errors in applications. The new engine exception introduced in this version will replace these types of errors, which is a great news for designers. If they now witness any fatal error, they can immediately remove it.
Continuous 64-Bit Support
It is now possible to operate PHP on a 64-BIT Windows system with total confidence. This is no doubt a remarkable change because the earlier versions of PHP have failed to support 64-bit integers or bigger files.
Group Use Declaration
Group Use Declaration is another more interesting feature of PHP 7. They outstandingly have improved PHP namespace implementations. Now you can import as many classes as you want from the namespaces, all because of this syntax. Another benefit of this syntax is, you have to write less code.
Anonymous Class Support
Classes with no name help developers to enhance their coding and fasten the execution time. Well, other programming languages like Java and C# also let developers make use of anonymous classes in their code.
Abstract Syntax Tree
PHP 7 introduces Abstract Syntax Tree and for good reason. It is the middle phase in the whole language compilation process. AST (Abstract Syntax Tree) has come with lots of advantages like the possibility of more optimization, refined code quality and the chance to use tools such as static code analyzers.
Removal of Unacceptable Items
Good news, some deprecated features, unsupported or dead server APIs and extensions are removed in this latest version of PHP. Here see the list of removed items:
- ASP style tags
- PHP 4 style constructors.
- Ereg and MYSQL extensions.
These are some necessary things to keep in mind while moving to PHP 7.
Stay alerted for notifications. Hosting sites usually send the notification to the site owners prior to any PHP updates. Do tell your hosting provider if you missed anything by mistake.
WordPress Site Backup
It would be great if you save the copies of your WordPress site in multiple locations before migrating to PHP 7. This applies even when you think that the update will not break your site.
Update Before Migrate
Update all your site elements like the themes, plugins and the whole WordPress site before migrating to PHP 7. It is a wise precaution to ensure that all the site elements work fine even after the migration.
Talk to your Hosting Provider
Don’t feel shy in contacting your web hosts’ support team. Ask them if they are able to take care of all the site issues while migrating. Ask them to simply install a new copy of WordPress and then restore your whole site from the backup.
Wrapping it up
With all these updates, the release of PHP 7 sounds are all exciting for the developers and designers. The new update is designed with lots of features which has made the programming language faster and more improved.
Still scared in migrating to PHP 7? So it is recommended to follow all the precautions to avoid any mishaps.