With the release of WooCommerce 8.2.0 in October 2023, PHP 7.4 will become the minimum required PHP version. This change is being made to ensure WooCommerce can leverage the improved performance and security of PHP 7.4. WooCommerce tracks version usage which shows that the use of older version of PHP keep declining. Requiring a new minimum allows them to develop WooCommerce in a more performant, scalable, and secure manner.
Don’t Wait, Do it Soon
While this requirement will go into effect with WooCommerce 8.2.0, it’s recommended you run and up to date and supported version of PHP if you haven’t already. This includes PHP 8.0 and newer. This gives you time to make sure your plugins and theme are compatible before the requirement goes into effect.
Updating PHP versions can require some technical work, so it’s best not to wait until the last minute. For Cinch Web Services customers, you don’t need to worry – we’ve already updated all our managed WooCommerce hosting plans to PHP 7.4 at a minimum, and many customers updated to PHP 8+.
Here are some tips on managing the PHP update:
- If available, test the update in a staging environment.
- Check which version of PHP your site is currently running. In cPanel, you can find this under “Select PHP Version.”
- Consult your host on the best way to update PHP. Many hosts offer simple “one click” updates through cPanel or their control panel.
- Backup your site before making any major changes like PHP version. Also disable caches and plugins to test that everything works on 7.4 before re-enabling them.
- After updating, check that your theme and plugins still function properly. Themes and plugins may need their own updates to work on PHP 7.4.
- If issues arise, you may need to replace outdated plugins with alternatives or find patched versions. Some old plugins may not be supported on newer PHP.
What happens if you don’t update?
If your server is still running PHP 7.3 or older when WooCommerce 8.2 is released, your site and WooCommerce instance will continue working, but you won’t be able to upgrade past WooCommerce 8.1.x.
Updating your PHP version is an important part of keeping your WooCommerce store secure and fast. The extra time required now prevents headaches once the 7.4 requirement is in effect. Feel free to contact our support team if you need any assistance!