TYPO3 v8.6 released

Categories: Development Created by TYPO3 CMS Core Team
The core team is proud to announce TYPO3 v8.6 has been released today. This sprint release is an important and last step before TYPO3 8 LTS scheduled to be published in April 2017. With one exception, TYPO3 v8.6 defines the feature set of the LTS version and brings an impressive set of changes, many of them turning preparations from earlier version 8 releases into visible functionality.

New image manipulation wizard

Image handling has been a strength of TYPO3 ever since. Next to integrator related features, version 7 brought a basic image manipulation wizard to the backend, allowing editors to crop images per usage.

This feature has been heavily extended in v8.6: Most importantly, the image manipulation wizard now allows multiple crop variants for a single image. This allows editors to show different image areas according to the display size in the frontend.

Editors can also select a focus area to provide a hint which area in the image is the most important and should always be visible.

Last but not least integrators can mark cover-areas which give editors a visual indication which areas of the images might be covered by other elements of the website.

This feature was sponsored by SYZYGY Deutschland GmbH.

Flexible Menu-based content elements

A lot of work has been put into “fluid_styled_content” and “css_styled_content”, the basis for rendering content of a web page. As a main goal, the two extensions are now much better aligned and reduce headaches for integrators if dealing with the two.

As a nice side effect, this revamp comes with a couple of visible UX improvements for editors when dealing with content elements: The “menu” elements like “List of pages” and “List of sections” are now true content elements and can be selected in the new element wizard directly without another step in between.

Improved link element and validation

To further improve the editing experience of forms in the backend a couple of great usability improvements were integrated: Link handling got a better preview that includes improvements like showing the page path instead of a cryptic internal link. Additionally, form validation errors are now displayed in the top right corner of the backend, allowing editors to directly jump to invalid fields.

The link dialog gained features to make it extensible, providing the ability to create links to all kinds of records. This functionality has previously been provided by the extension “linkhandler”. 

Language synchronization feature

The steady refactoring of crucial parts of the code base like the data, form and language handling allows to add new custom features easily on top of TYPO3. A new wizard has been implemented allowing translators to select if a single field of a localized record has a dedicated value or if it should inherit the value of its language parent. The data handling within the core ensures the field content is copied to the translated record in case of changes to the parent record.

Improved scheduler module

Multiple features were added to the scheduler, the task runner of TYPO3. It’s now possible to have fine grained control of tasks and task groups. Single and multiple tasks can now be scheduled to be executed on next cron run and the user interface for handling long lists of tasks has been improved.

Fluid Styled Content & CSS Styled Content refactoring

Innovation is as important to us as to protect your investment. With TYPO3 Fluid we introduced a new template language a couple of years for a simple reason: To reduce the cost of creating websites for Frontend developers. More intuitive and easy to maintain predefined templates enable developers to speed up integrations, that are more reliable and flexible than ever before.

CSS Styled Content (CSC) has been the preferred template rendering engine for TYPO3 for a long time, and is part of TYPO3 since version 4.0, dating back to 2006. CSC is extremely flexible but also hard to learn and understand even for highly trained TYPO3 integrators. With the release of TYPO3 CMS 7.6 we fully embraced TYPO3 Fluid also for the rendering of content elements.

Fluid Styled Content (FSC) was introduced as successor of CSC but the feature set diverged from the beginning. The lack of flexibility and incomplete feature set in comparison to CSC made it hard to migrate existing instances that have embraced all features and the enormous flexibility before.

With the release of TYPO3 8.6 we are now making migrations even easier and provide new possibilities for more cost-efficient integrations. CSC is now fully compatible with FSC and shares the same capabilities to make a transition as easy as possible. To focus even more on the development of FSC in the next major version of TYPO3, CSC is now deprecated and in maintenance mode.

For compatibility, CSC is now supporting “Text and Media” that was previously exclusive to FSC. On top of that, FSC has learned some tricks from CSC. Now Fluid Styled Content has support for all content elements prior existing only in CSC, this includes "Text", "Text and Images" and "Images". Also for example „Frames", "Space before" and "Space after" have been integrated and fine tuned for better maintainability and understandability for Editors and Integrators. We cannot wait to see what you are creating with these new options.

Further changes

As usual, we have a lot of small but nice changes in TYPO3:
The previously introduced Form Framework in 8.5, originally derived from the Flow Framework of Sebastian Kurfürst of the <link https: neos.io>Neos project, has some better integrations for “Finishers” and optimized templates to be used out-of-the-box.
The command-line handling of the TYPO3 Core has been optimized, making it easier for TYPO3 to run without creating a Backend user before.
The newly introduced CKEditor Rich Text Editor is now configurable through Yaml-based configuration presets, allowing to re-use configurations in multiple installations.
For a full list of changes, see our documentation for more information: <link https: docs.typo3.org typo3cms extensions core changelog index.html>docs.typo3.org/typo3cms/extensions/core/8-dev/Changelog/8.6/Index.html 

Download TYPO3 now

TYPO3 v8.6 is available on our <link>download page or via composer (see <link http: composer.typo3.org>composer.typo3.org). The minimum PHP version required to run TYPO3 v8 is PHP 7.0, so make sure your system is equipped with the proper PHP version.

What's next?

The final v8 release, which will be labelled as TYPO3 v8 LTS will be released on April 4th, 2017. From now on, the team will concentrate on bug fixing, documentation and finishing a couple of loose ends. The goal is to release a first TYPO3 v8 LTS version as stable as possible, so administrators, integrators, developers and editors can rely on it as a stable product right from the beginning. To achieve that, we need as much testing and feedback as possible of v8.6 now. Please participate in this process, upgrade your instances to v8.6 and help find and fix issues not tackled yet. Helping now will directly safe time and money when it comes to the roll out of TYPO3 v8 LTS to the huge user base.