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TYPO3 version 4.5 with Long Term Support

September 27, 2010

Category: Community
Author: Ernesto Baschny

The TYPO3 Core Team and the TYPO3 Community are proud to announce that the next major release of TYPO3, version 4.5, will be a "Long Term Support" (LTS) release. We now produce a new major TYPO3 release every six months, which means old versions become unsupported more quickly. The Long Term Support version, however, will continue to be maintained and supported for three years. There is no extra fee for this special LTS version; our very best work is available to everyone on the same free terms as other TYPO3 versions. Upgrades to new versions of TYPO3 are and always will be free of charge.

 

We define the Long Term Support to be:

  • Enterprise Focused: We are improving workspaces and versioning, as well as language handling.

  • Usability Focused: For the past year we have focused heavily on usability. The release of this LTS version will provide the user with a streamlined experience that is better than ever before.

  • Compatible with Internet Explorer 6: We will make sure the TYPO3 Backend supports all major browsers and versions, including Internet Explorer 6.

  • API: We will continue to refine the TYPO3 Core APIs, creating new, modern components and making use of those already introduced since TYPO3 4.2.

  • Stable and fully backward compatible: We will declare a complete feature freeze on November 20, 2010 move into the Beta cycle, allowing for testing and bug fixing until the TYPO3 4.5 release in January 2011.

The TYPO3 User Experience Week 2009 (T3UXW09) kicked off several usability projects, some of which have already been included in TYPO3 4.4. Other T3UXW09 projects are still in progress. After the fantastic TYPO3 Developer Days 2010, all the teams are motivated to continue their work and prepare their projects for inclusion in TYPO3 4.5.

Planned improvements for TYPO3 4.5

Some of the planned improvements include an ExtJS* based page tree (Stefan Galinski), an ExtJS API for context menus, and a whole new backend experience without the use of a FRAMESET. As an alternative to the 4 column Web>Page view and the Web>List view, TYPO3 4.5 will include new module to position elements like they are displayed in the frontend - in a grid. A team led by Thomas Hempel is working on this feature. The extension manager will get a facelift (Steffen Kamper), and Patrick Broens will continue to work on the Install Tool.

Target: fastest TYPO3 ever

Another goal for TYPO3 4.5 is to make it the fastest TYPO3 version ever. To achieve this, experts in performance-related issues (Rupert Germann and Christian Kuhn) will profile the frontend to find any place where the speed can be increased. Also, Xavier Perseguers will give extra attention to the speed of the Database Abstraction Layer (DBAL) and Indexed Search will be refactored (Michael Stucki, Dmitry Dulepov).

Enterprise improvements

 

For enterprise users of TYPO3 CMS, the workspaces* team (Sonja Scholz) will focus on issues like custom staging, easier and more logical configuration of a workspace, code refactoring, and documentation. A new library for sending mails will ensure compatibility with the current mail standard (RFC5322)[1]. There are many other planned features to help ensure that TYPO3 4.5 stays competitive for the next three years (UTF-8 by default, Lightbox API, removal of inline CSS styles, etc).

At a low level, many improvements will ensure TYPO3 4.5 is stable and mature: backend forms refactoring and reorganization, new low level cleanup tasks making use of the scheduler, a file abstraction layer, reports module enhancements, and a Backend editor with syntax highlighting.

The work on TYPO3 4.5 started with a kick-off at the TYPO3 Developer Days 2010. The beta releases are scheduled before the end of 2010, and the final release is scheduled for January 26, 2011.

Release Team

The release team consists of Ernesto Baschny as the release manager and Steffen Kamper as the technical leader. Benjamin Mack (4.4 release manager) is assisting the team.

Ernesto Baschny has worked on many TYPO3 projects since 2003 as the manager of cron IT GmbH. He has been a member of the TYPO3 core team since 2005 when his first project was improving accessibility in the "Text with images" content element. Since then he has continued adding features, fixing bugs, and participating in the community by sharing his ideas and helping others.

Steffen Kamper is Jazz pianist and freelance programmer. He has worked with TYPO3 since 2006 and has been a member of the TYPO3 core team since 2008. He is very active in bug fixing and also created the Media content element and the pageRenderer for the TYPO3 core. He is a very active community member and shares his ideas and knowledge in many places.

Benjamin Mack is the Release Manager of TYPO3 4.4. Benni brought features like a unified AJAX interface to TYPO3 and has recently been involved in developing extensions based on the new MVC Framework Extbase. He has also focused on improving workspaces in TYPO3 v4. His company "b:dreizehn" works alongside other web and ad agencies around the world, solving complex problems and facing technical challenges of any kind.

[1] tools.ietf.org/html/rfc5322

* ExtJS – Ext (pronounced "Eee Eks Tee") is a JavaScript library for building interactive web applications using techniques such as Ajax, DHTML and DOM scripting.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extjs

* Workspaces – Workspaces can be used as an advanced workflow system. When editing in a workspace, TYPO3 automatically creates a copy of the existing content or page. The process is completely transparent and not different from working with normal TYPO3 website. Several stages of approval and review are optional.

[this is the first article in a series of simultaneously english/german published articles in cooperation with T3N magazine]


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