So we're now about one week into the stable cycle for Joomla! 1.6 and it seems that the biggest question that is on people's minds is upgrading/migration. There is a great deal of interest from people who want to keep their existing sites, but who also want to try out the latest and greatest features that Joomla! 1.6 has to offer.

When the Production Leadership Team met in San Francisco last September, the release of Joomla! 1.6 was one of the big topics we had to grapple with.  We had made good progress already, but there was still a good amount of work to be done.

Given the situation we found ourselves in, together with the fact that there was already a community member (Matias Aguirre) who was working on a migration tool, we decided that it was better to support the effort already in progress than to spend time duplicating what was already in progress.

So, the bottom line is this:

  • Migration to Joomla! 1.6 - We recommend people interested in migrating to use Matias Aguirre's jUpgrade extension.  Testing and feedback from the community will play an important role in perfecting this extension.
  • Migration to the July 2011 release - We are planning to implement a site importer in this release that will allow you to import your data from either Joomla! 1.5 or Joomla! 1.6.
  • As per the Development Strategy, we intend to manage change much more carefully moving forward. This, combined with our shortened release cycle means that upgrades and migrations will go a lot smoother. 
  • Joomla! 1.5 is a Long Term Support (LTS) release. This means that it will be supported for approximately 15 more months. That makes the estimated date for End of Life of Joomla! 1.5 to be April 11, 2012.
  • The next LTS release will take place in January of 2012.

Joomla! 1.6 not only marks the introduction of major features that people have been waiting for (granular access control, unlimited category depth), but also the shift to a new development strategy that will enable us to release continual updates on a regular basis while making the upgrade process as painless as possible.