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After some research, I am planning to start the migration of a high trafficked site from Pressflow 6 to Drupal 7, as the current implementation (Pressflow 6 + 200 modules) is making it crawl. I've read that most of Pressflow 6 (if not all) performance changes have made into Drupal 7, and that's awesome. I will be starting the project in a day or 2 and I was wondering if I should be starting with the stable version (Jan 5, 2011) or the latest development snapshot.

There is a gap of over 3 months, and I am wondering if I will lose on fixes that made into the 7.x branch in these 3 months (that's a long time for a open source project so popular) and if a new stable release is around the corner.

I would also like to understand the impact on frequency of code updates on drupal core ( in case I use dev snapshot) and ways to manage it properly.

  • Just a little point of correction, a lot of the pressflow changes were back ports from D7, not the other way round. – Jeremy French Apr 12 '11 at 12:43
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Start with -dev. D7 got a fair number of bugfixes since january, as well as performance improvements. However, 7.1 is still not around the corner, so using -dev is your best bet.

Plus, when a release is that old, you need to test and report bugs against -dev (which is true for all contrib modules as well). Otherwise you might just be reporting bugs which are already fixed.

  • My perception was that if I use stable release I wont have to deal with bugs and unexpected behavior as thats the only + point I can see with using a stable release. I guess suggestion to use dev makes more sense as stable 7.0 simply means no critical bugs (?) but still lot of fixes left to be done which might have come in dev by now. Does that sound right to you? – Dipen Apr 12 '11 at 13:37
  • Yes. You'll find that in this case the older stable release has more, not less bugs. – Bojan Zivanovic Apr 12 '11 at 15:54
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It's a difficult question to answer, because the status of a release (dev, beta, RC) is not necessarily a measure of it's stability, but rather an indication how well it has been tested before the maintainer released it. A module's dev version can (but does not need to be) more stable than the latest beta, RC or stable release.

IMHO, 200 is a huge amount of modules. If it's an option, consider reducing the number of modules. Often, 80% of a site's functionality is created with 20% of the modules, so the question is if the last 20% of functionality justifies the other 80% of modules.

  • Thats what I plan to do, lot of unnecessary modules were used to cater to features not even used by users. – Dipen Apr 12 '11 at 13:33
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I think the answer really depends on how comfortable you are getting your hands dirty if you run into an issue. I personally like working with 'dev' versions, especially in cases where there has been a lot of active development that hasn't made it back to the latest 'stable' build. That being said, I have a pretty solid feeling for how Drupal works, and have built many sites in the environment.

I feel that it helps developers if I can point out bugs (or maybe even suggest a fix every once and a while) and I get to use the newest version of the code! Win win.

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