Drupal 9 Launch & Drupal 7 Lockdown


Marketing Communications

Updated content management system (CMS) lays foundation for innovation; the journey to Drupal 9

The web content management system of the university's main website, wpi.edu, will be updated from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9 on Sunday, December 18, just before the holiday break. This update, required because Drupal 7 is nearing end-of-life, is the result of thousands of hours of development over the past two years led by the marketing operations team within Marketing Communications. To the visitor, the changes won't be obvious—this is not a redesign; rather it lays foundation for future innovations on wpi.edu while streamlining the backend experience for Drupal editors and assuring that the university's website is on a supported platform. 

Prepare for no access to your site; then, please, send a note if you see something amiss 

  • Drupal 9 will "launch" on December 18, 2022—a few days before the holiday break. 
  • Drupal 7, the current site version, will be "locked down" beginning at 12:01 AM on December 14 through the launch of Drupal 9 on December 18. During this period of time you will not be able to login to Drupal to edit your website, so please plan accordingly.*
  • This lockdown helps to assure that all of the content gets moved to the new server, that users are granted the permissions they need, and that the marketing operations team can find and address any issues with content and its presentation before Drupal 9 goes live. 
  • Once live, the Drupal 9 version might have some quirks and you can help by sending a note to CMSHelp@wpi.edu if you see something amiss. 

*  If there is a mission-critical change that needs to be made during the lockdown, please send an email to CMSHelp@wpi.edu. Generally, we ask that you update your site by December 13.  A notice will be sent to Drupal editors when Drupal 9 is live and users have access once again.

Why are we moving from Drupal 7 to Drupal 9?

Some of the technology that Drupal 7 relies on is reaching end-of-life and will no longer be supported. Without security updates to the software, our website could become vulnerable to hackers.

Will the website look the same?

For the most part yes, it will look the same. You will see some minor changes throughout the website, but the overall look and feel will be the same.

Will I need to take Drupal training again?

We are recommending that users watch our Drupal 9 training videos.  We have created a playlist of over 30 short videos, most between 1-3 minutes long, that will walk you through the steps of editing your website in Drupal 9.  The best part is that you can pick and choose the videos you want to watch in order to complete the tasks you need to do. 

Will there be a Drupal 9 training class that I can attend?

We will no longer be holding Zoom training classes for Drupal.  Instead we encourage you to watch our Drupal 9 training videos, which we hope will get you up and running in Drupal faster.  Asynchronous training gives you more flexibility to learn Drupal on your own time and you can pick and choose which features you want to learn about.  In the upcoming months, we will hold Drupal Workshops where you can come in person to ask questions about editing your website in Drupal 9.

Will I still have access to edit my website?

Yes. Whatever pages you had access to in Drupal 7, you should still have access to in Drupal 9.  If for some reason you do not have the correct access rights, please notify us by emailing CMSHelp@wpi.edu and we'll get that fixed right away.

Will I still be able to get to the old website?

Yes, the Drupal 7 website will still be accessible for a period of time after the launch.  It will not be visible to the public, only to users on the WPI network.

What should I do if I see a problem on the website?

If you find an issue, please report it to CMSHelp@wpi.edu.