Balancing change and security with PHP 5.3 was a challenge.
We were facing a dilemma with PHP 5.3 and the sites which relied on this version of PHP.
Our plan was to upgrade every site relying on PHP 5.3 before we migrated servers so we could move forward.
Behind the scenes it gets complicated and I appreciate that all this talk of servers, versions of PHP can float over the top of your head.
We found a solution that would keep everyone happy allowing sites to use PHP 5.3 up to PHP 7.1.
A lot of software applications no longer support PHP 5.3, so we urge anyone still on this PHP version to upgrade.
Security is a huge issue today. This applies to our own computers and hosted websites on our server.
Going with CloudLinux has allowed us to use a security feature called CAGE FS.
This enabled us to secure everyone on the server irrespective of the PHP version.
Cage FS is covered on another post.
Newer versions of PHP have better security, features, and speed.
Legacy software relies on a feature of older PHP versions deprecated on newer PHP versions.
Fastpage is an example of Legacy Software which can only work on PHP 5.3.
On the new server, we have enabled a caching system called Opcahce.
Opcache will speed up PHP sites running PHP version 5.5 or higher
This is another reason to move away from the older versions of PHP.
If you have ever used products like Windows you tend to just a little cautious when a new version of Windows is released.
Cpanel version 66 was happening where we hoped nothing would break.
Technically if everyone was using PHP 5.5 or higher that upgrade would have gone without an issue, except we had legacy sites relying on PHP 5.3.
A new milestone version of CPANEL ver 66 was released on the 31st of August 2017.
This is where the unexpected can happen as without warning the default PHP version was set to 5.5 during the upgrade.
This meant all the legacy sites running PHP 5.3 no longer functioned correctly.
This was quickly rectified where all the known legacy sites were set back to 5.3 while the default version of PHP was kept at 5.5.
This is highlights one of the challenges in keeping PHP 5.3 running on the server.
September 14th, 2017