What's new in Drupal 7

With the code freeze underway for some time, Dries has posted an update about the upcoming Drupal 7 release. I thought this might be a nice time to overview some of the most exciting new stuff in Drupal 7 and see where all the action is happening right now.

Some overall highlights:

[1]  module screen improved (in progress), disable preview buttons,  vertical tabs in core,  better password checker and much more

[2] and improved support for installation profiles

[3] also, hopefully, there will be a nice new front-end core theme which could replace Garland

[4] with some discussion about the chosen database storage solution (see also screenshot).

[5] also called update manager, one of the code freeze exceptions

[6] improved password algorithm,  protected cron, flood login control and much more

[caption id="attachment_1101" align="aligncenter" width="574" caption="An image is nog longer a widget of file, but a separate field type"]An image is nog longer a widget of file, but a seperate field type[/caption]

For developers / themers:

[7] see complete what-developer-need-to-know on javascript in Drupal 7

[8] building upon that, a project to support Oracle

Some things that didn't make it

The list is a bit longer than this, but here are some things which will have to wait until Drupal 8 or become available as contributed modules.

Also, there are some concerns about the performance of Drupal 7 (versus Drupal 6) this point. But there is a lot of movement in this area and it's only natural that a piece of software which gained a lot of new features needs to be optimized in code freeze. Something else which seems a bit worrying is the comment on Dries' post by sun about the status of the field API in general. Looks like there is much cleaning up to do in the API.

If you want to take Drupal 7 out for a spin to check it out for yourself, you can download a development snapshot here. Needless to say, you don't want to be using this in a production environment.  I think it still looks a bit rough (css issues in different browsers) and while the admin interface is a *lot* better than Garland, it does feel unpolished yet (the dashboard for example). Icons would provide a much more pleasant first time experience, but I think everybody is currently more occupied with the shortcut toolbar issue, which has proven to be quite a challenge to implement. It also one of the issues tagged as Drupal 7 priority.

And for those who want to know when Drupal 7 will be ready? When this list becomes empty.

Other references:

Monster Media Sprint New York

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