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Infrastructure

Software stack version upgrades

VIP manages the software stack for all WordPress environments to ensure that WordPress core, PHP, and MU-plugins such as Jetpack and Parse.ly are kept on recent versions.

The upgrade process for components of the software stack begins with a small subset of sites. Those sites are tested thoroughly to ensure stability before continuing with the wider release. VIP continually monitors all sites to ensure they are up and serving a reasonable response code throughout the upgrade process.

The upgrade process for all environments on the platform is normally completed within 48 hours for major and minor releases. Security releases are completed by VIP as quickly as possible.

Security updates for third-party plugins on VIP sites are made available by Codebase Manager’s Automated Security Scanning.

Upgrades for WordPress, Jetpack and Parse.ly

VIP supports the current release version, and one major version behind.

Major versions

VIP considers a major new software version to be X.X (e.g. 5.8, 5.9).

Advance notice and details of upcoming major release versions are posted in the VIP Lobby. Details of recommended testing are included, as well as the expected date that all environments will be upgraded to the new version.

As a major release approaches, non-production environments can be upgraded to the new release version. This allows application code to be tested against the new release version prior to an upgrade on production, and helps to ensure that the upgrade process goes smoothly.

To test an available new release version on a non-production VIP Platform environment, create a Support ticket requesting an upgrade and indicate the target environment.

If a customer has issues with the expected date for the upgrade, submit a Support ticket to communicate the issues and a preferred date. VIP Support will do its best to accommodate requests for postponed upgrades. However, to ensure that an environment is eligible for security updates, the length of time for postponed upgrades is limited.

Minor versions

VIP considers a minor new software version of to be X.X.X (e.g. 5.8.1, 5.8.2).

For example, a VIP environment at WordPress version 5.8 will update to 5.8.1, and an environment at WordPress version 5.7.2 will update to 5.7.3.

Minor releases are designed to change the most minimal set of code possible to fix a given group of bugs and are considered to be low-risk upgrades.

VIP will automatically upgrade all environments to a minor release version within a couple days after the release occurs.

Security releases and proactive mitigations

Some minor versions are security releases, and VIP will act on them as soon as they come out. A security release will be automatically deployed to all environments on the platform as quickly as possible.

VIP promptly deploys patches and other protections to mitigate critical vulnerabilities.

Upgrades for PHP

VIP only supports versions of PHP that are eligible for security fixes.

PHP’s Semantic Versioning structures release versions as <major>.<minor>.<patch> to indicate if a release is major, minor, or security related.

The currently supported versions of PHP on VIP are 7.4, 8.0, and 8.1.
PHP version 7.4 will no longer be supported on VIP after November 28, 2022.

Advance notice and scheduling details for upcoming major release versions are posted in the VIP Lobby.

As a major release approaches, non-production environments can be upgraded to the new release version. This allows application code to be tested against the new release version prior to an upgrade on production, and helps to ensure that the upgrade process goes smoothly.

To test an available new release version on a non-production VIP Platform environment, create a Support ticket requesting an upgrade and indicate the target environment.

Last updated: April 25, 2022