DrupalCONCEPT: PHP upgrade and deployment improvements

Published 2012-03-17 by Jochen Lillich

We’d like to notify our DrupalCONCEPT customers about two important changes in our hosting infrastructure:

*Platform-wide upgrade to PHP 5.3

*Improved deployment process

Both changes are explained in detail below.

They will take place during the time from Thursday, 2012–03–22 23:00, to Friday, 2012–03–23 05:00 (CET) .

This information will also be distributed via our Tech Info newsletter. If you are the technical contact (webmaster, developer, etc.) for your organization’s website(s) hosted on DrupalCONCEPT, please subscribe!

###PHP upgrade

This change affects the DrupalCONCEPT clusters “pro07” to “pro25” as well as “elite5” and “elite6”.

While our newer DrupalCONCEPT servers already run PHP 5.3, mainly the ones we built in 2010 still have PHP 5.2 installed. The PHP project stopped its support for PHP 5.2 in August 2011 and we’ve decided, for obvious maintenance and security reasons, to upgrade all older servers from PHP 5.2.10 to PHP 5.3.2 (original Ubuntu 10.04 LTS packages).

We had already announced this upgrade for 2012–03–03, but decided to cancel it on short notice. We figure that doing the upgrade during the week is a better choice because it gives us and our customers a better opportunity to quickly spot and eliminate problems caused by the upgrade.

If you have any questions regarding this upgrade, please let us know!

###Deployment improvements

This change affects the DrupalCONCEPT clusters “pro07” to “pro19”.

On our newer DrupalCONCEPT servers, we already have an improved website deployment concept in place that reflects our learnings from the first months of operation. Now it’s time to roll out these improvements also onto those servers that have been running since early on.

Mainly, the following advantages come with the improved deployment concept:

*A different approach to updating the Drupal installation after a Git repository change prevents failing merge processes that block further updates.

*A modified set of permissions removes Drupal’s write access to the directories controlled by Git. This eliminates problems where file changes made by Drupal cause merge conflicts.

Please be aware that the second change will limit write access to the asset directories under sites/…/files/. We advise you to change your configuration if your Drupal installation still does file modifications somewhere outside of these asset directories. Please let us know if you need help correcting this behaviour.


If you have any questions regarding these changes, please get in touch with our tech support. We’ll do our best to find a quick solution.