I am currently on Version 8.3.2 and php 7.2.34 . Over the past few years I have been focusing on the content on my site and not the technical aspect. I am now seeing that there may be support/security issues with staying on version 8. After reading various posts about updating I see that I need to update from 8.3 to 8.7 and then update to version 9. I must say that I am totally lost and do not feel I know all the steps in the process.
It looks like when I upgrade from 8.3.2 to 8.5.7 I need to make a change to my database so that instead of a utf8 character set it is using a utf8mb4. What other changes are required? Are there any issues or problems modifying this database setting? Seems like several people posting in the forum ran into problems.
How does one do the php update so that you keep the php and concrete versions in sync? Not sure the order of the upgrade path.
Is there a list of differences between 8.5.7 and concrete 9 available so that I understand how to upgrade my custom blocks? Could not find anything in the documentation.
My template provider has not upgraded the template I am using to Version 9. What are my options? Sounds like the new system for managing templates requires more heavy duty programming experience. I am basically a web designer that knows enough php to be dangerous. Seriously wondering if Concrete5 is becoming too difficult for someone like me to continue using. I really do not have a budget to be hiring outside consultants.
Any insights would be sincerely appreciated.