A new version of PHP (PHP 8.0) was released on 26th of November. WordPress is mostly written with PHP so the new major version has a big impact on WordPress. The last major version PHP 7.0 was released in 2015.
WordPress 5.6 is the first version to officially support PHP 8.0. WordPress is calling the version 5.6 “beta compatible” as they expect still to find more issues. Also you should note that a lot of the popular plugins do not support PHP 8.0 yet, so make sure to test well before implementing.
Seravo has sponsored making PHP 8.0 available for all users of Debian and Ubuntu. Seravo was probably the first hosting provider to support PHP 8.0 for WordPress.
You can test your site compatibility with PHP 8.0 on your command prompt by running
wp-check-php-compatibility --php 8.0.
PHP 8 offers many new qualities especially in code quality assurance. You can read more about what is exciting to us in our last post What’s new in PHP8.
As a customer of Seravo you are indirectly participating in the development of PHP, because PHP and the tools related to it (e.g. Xdebug) are open source projects that Seravo is sponsoring.
How can I get it?
It is our recommendation that you shouldn’t just update to PHP 8.0 without proper testing. Even with the latest WordPress 5.6 there are surely some unseen issues that will come up and the plugins you use might not support the latest PHP yet. At this moment we recommend you to make sure that your site is working fully with PHP 7.4. If the code does not produce any notices or warnings during a PHP run, then it is safe to assume that the codebase is compatible with PHP 8.0. Seravo customers can run tests in Vagrant to see if there are issues with the latest versions and what might be the cause.