Drupal 7 vs Drupal 8: What Are the Key Differences?

Jan 13, 2021
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Drupal 7 vs Drupal 8: The Major Differences

If anyone needed our advice on which CMS to build a site, we would say Drupal without hesitation! It is the most secure and flexible of all the CMS. You can create sites for any business area and size on Drupal.

To date, 9 versions of Drupal have been released. The next logical question is, which version is the best? No one can give a definitive answer. The only thing that can be said for sure is that Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 are the most popular.

Therefore, today we will focus our attention on the difference between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8. Our Drupal web development agency will highlight 6 main technical differences between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8. This will allow you to understand how one version differs from another and which you should choose.

6 Key technical differences between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8

1. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Template engine

Perhaps the main difference between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 is the appearance of the new template engine Twig in the latest version.

  • Previously, Drupal 7 used the PHP template by default. In order to write a template, it was necessary to write PHP code.
  • Drupal 8 now has a Twig engine that is based on PHP. As a result, programmers can now write templates using a simpler syntax faster and more safely that before.

In simple terms, the template engine in Drupal 7 is like cooking on your own, and the templates engine in Drupal 8 is like cooking with a multicooker.

2. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Symfony framework

Symfony is a modular framework that allows web developers to literally piece a project together.

  • Drupal 7 did not yet have a Symfony framework, and therefore codebase management is more difficult. Of course, developers can still use Drupal 7 codebase, however it is more difficult for them to write complex functions.
  • Drupal 8 is already integrated with the Symfony framework at a high code security level. Therefore, it helps:
  1. to integrate Drupal website with third-party apps and correctly display data in various formats
  2. to use routing to make all the URLs on your Drupal site SEO-friendly
  3. to simplify the creation of multilingual websites by having a built-in "Translation" component

3. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Responsive web design

Responsive design is a must for a modern website. Responsiveness is the ability of a website to adapt to different devices.

  • Drupal 7 does not have breakpoint media queries. This does not mean that Drupal 7 sites are non-responsive, it is just that this responsiveness is created without breakpoint media queries.
  • For comparison, Drupal 8 actively uses breakpoint media queries, which allows to make a website as adaptive to different devices as possible.

4. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Text Editor

Convenience of content management plays a significant role. Even in this, Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 are different.

  • Drupal 7 uses the contributed module for content management, which is not very convenient. The process of publishing and editing content takes a longer time.
  • Drupal 8 has a built-in CKEditor module. Admins can publish content quickly and edit it via WYSIWYG editing. This greatly simplifies the task, since the user immediately sees the edited one.

The advent of the built-in CKEditor in Drupal 8 started a new era of Drupal sites.

5. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Loading speed

More than one blog has already been written about the importance of page loading speed. It has been proven that, on average, users wait no more than 3 seconds for a page response. Therefore, each site owner should strive to get as close as possible to this kind of speed.

  • Drupal 7 uses less powerful caching paths and therefore pages take longer to laod.
  • Drupal 8 has an improved caching mechanism. If the user has already visited your site, then the data will not be reloaded again. This makes it easier for you to achieve high download speeds and boosts the performance.

6. Drupal 7 vs. Drupal 8: Multilingual website

The availability of the site in many languages is a must to grow your business if you really want to expand your customer base.

  • If your site is on Drupal 7, then you have a harder time doing this than the Drupal 8 site owners.
  • Drupal 8 introduces default support for multilingual website development. In version 8 of Drupal, the new modules are used, which are responsible for the translation of interface, configuration, content and content management.
6 Key technical differences between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8

Other key differences between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8

It is clear that the 6 differences are not all. Therefore, in order for you to get a complete picture of the difference between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8, we have created this comparison table.

Key differences between Drupal 7 and Drupal 8

What’s Best for Your Business Drupal 7 or Drupal 8?

Based on our blog, you can determine exactly what is best for your business — Drupal 7 or Drupal 8.
Both versions have their advantages and disadvantages, but Drupal 8 confidently takes the lead. This is because it is more flexible, powerful, and more efficient.
Our team of web developers are happy to help you choose and upgrade to the best version of Drupal.

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