TYPO3 Version 11.2—Escape the Orbit

Categories: Development, TYPO3 CMS Created by Michael Schams
Lightspeed ahead! Our quest continues with the release of TYPO3 version 11.2 today. Performance and efficiency are not only important attributes in space flights. The new sprint release of the TYPO3 v11 series comes with improvements that make working in the backend lightning fast and a pure pleasure. Read on to learn more about the exciting features that will take your TYPO3 project into the stratosphere.

It's unclear who suggested the date May the 4th as a release date when the roadmap was initially developed for the TYPO3 v11 releases. Whether this date was chosen intentionally or at random is also nebulous, but the fact remains: Happy Star Wars Day. May the force be with you, TYPO3 friends!

The following sections focus on the main changes, improvements, and features. Check out the TYPO3 What’s New Slides and the detailed technical changelog for more in-depth details.

Key Changes in TYPO3 v11.2

SVG-based Page and File Tree “Everywhere”

In TYPO3 v9, we reworked the page tree, switched to a SVG-only approach, and removed all ExtJS code from the backend. This resulted in super-fast rendering times and has made working in the page tree much smoother. We further optimized this area in v10 and reworked the “Filelist” backend module in TYPO3 v11.1 earlier this year. Since then, the folder list uses the same lightweight technique as the page tree. Guess what — we did not stop there!

Both components, the page tree and the file/folder list, also appear in the “Record Selector”. This is the modal window that lets users select a page, a file, a folder, an external URL or an email address, etc. The Record Selector now features the same state-of-the-art components and architecture for the page tree and the file/folder list.

Users can, for example, apply a filter and collapse the tree component. Content elements are now much easier to find and select. They appear neatly listed in the content area. An input field at the top lets users filter the folder list based on search terms. TYPO3 even takes file names into account and shows a list of folders that contain files matching the pattern that users specify.

We used the SVG-only technology that is lightweight, slim, and renders super-fast in all modern browsers. As the data is loaded using JSON-based AJAX, only the required parts of the trees are fetched from the server. The same applies to the content area which results in an incredible performance boost when working in the backend.

Whenever a tree component (page or file tree) comes into play, its visual appearance and functions are now streamlined and consistent across the TYPO3 backend. Backend users can even use their keyboard to navigate within the tree components.

Deep Linking in the Backend

Some members of the TYPO3 community scratched their heads when we announced our intention to implement deep linking and link sharing for the TYPO3 backend. What are the benefits and do we really need this feature?

Deep links are nothing unusual in the frontend. If you are interested in TYPO3 Association memberships, for example, you visit the typo3.org website and navigate to the respective page. You eventually end up at https://typo3.org/project/association/membership. This link represents the path to the piece of web content on the website. You can bookmark this link in your browser and/or send it to your colleagues.

Users now have this option when they work in the TYPO3 backend too. You will soon realize how amazing and helpful this feature is.

Let’s look at a few examples of what you and your backend users can do with deep linking and link sharing.

If two or more editors are responsible for maintaining the content of a website, they can now easily point their colleagues to a specific target in the backend. This is not limited to a page. Backend users can, for example, share a deep link to a particular content element:

Hello Spock. I updated the crew roster page as discussed. Could you please add your working shifts to the following content element:
https
//example.com/typo3/record/edit?edit[tt_content][3]=edit.
Thanks, Uhura.

Backend users who frequently update the same content of a page now have the option to bookmark the link and open it directly. If they are not logged in to the backend yet, the login form appears, and the user is automatically redirected to the right target once successfully authenticated.

Those experienced with TYPO3 often have to guide a newcomer or client through the backend. Sometimes in an email, sometimes remotely on the phone. Do instructions like the following sound familiar to you?

Please locate the module ‘Web’ in the backend on the left-hand-side, then click on ‘List’. Now choose the page ‘Star Trek Actors’ from the page tree. If you don’t know where the page is located in the page tree, enter the name in the search box. Once you click the page, locate the table ‘Voyager’ in the content area. Then...

This is all history now. Integrators and clients can simply share a deep link. The recipient follows the link and ends up at the right place. Quick and easy.

There is no doubt that backend users will embrace this feature as it makes working in the backend much more efficient.

Site Configuration: System Locales

System locales are used to localize various formats across the system. Locales are generated on the server and are basically conventions on how to use date and time formatting, currency display, etc.

In older versions of the CMS, when setting up a new site for their instance, TYPO3 integrators had to enter the locale identifier by hand. To make it faster to set up a site and its languages, TYPO3 v11.2 now detects which locales are available on the system and lists them in a dropdown box.

Integrators can now easily select the appropriate item from the list making it a time saver and less prone to error.

Housekeeping

Sprint releases are also a perfect opportunity to update libraries and tools we are using in TYPO3. Introducing new versions early in a release lifecycle lets us and the developer community use and test these thoroughly prior to the long-term support (LTS) release.

In TYPO3 v11.2, we updated the CKEditor to version 4.16 and Bootstrap from v5-beta2 to beta3. We also added compatibility with Doctrine DBAL version 2.13.

Composer

Installing TYPO3 by using Composer has been our official recommendation for quite some time now. The benefits are clearly apparent. Composer is not only the de-facto standard when it comes to modern dependency management in the PHP universe today. It also makes your life easier when developing, testing, publishing, and maintaining your extension and/or installing and updating a TYPO3 instance.

With TYPO3 version 11.2 we start to set the course for the future. Our long-term strategy is to move away from the proprietary ext_emconf.php files which are currently used by every system and third-party extension.

If you are a TYPO3 developer make sure that your extensions contain a valid composer.json file. This will set you on a course to avoid possible issues in the future. An extension without Composer support is deemed bad practice, and in addition, extensions require a valid composer.json file to have their documentation rendered on docs.typo3.org. To learn how simple it is to add Composer support, see the TYPO3 documentation.

As a TYPO3 administrator or integrator, we highly recommend you set up TYPO3 using Composer from now on. The TYPO3 Installation and Upgrade Guide also contains instructions on how to migrate an existing installation to Composer.

System Requirements, Support, and Maintenance

The system requirements for TYPO3 v11.2 remain the same as outlined in the previous TYPO3 v11 release announcements. The same applies to our support and maintenance promise.

Download

You can install TYPO3 in various ways. Our recommended approach is setting up a project using Composer. Alternatively, you can still download and extract the source packages at get.typo3.org. You find further details at get.typo3.org/version/11.

What’s Next

TYPO3 version 11.2 is the third sprint release of the v11 series. To learn more about the release, check out the TYPO3 What’s New Slides or the detailed technical changelog.

The saga continues! The next release on the roadmap is TYPO3 v11.3, scheduled on 13 July 2021.

Additional contributors for this article
  • Copy Editor : Mathias Bolt Lesniak