Microsoft announces it will not support PHP 8.0 for Windows

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Microsoft announces it will not offer support in ‘any capacity’ for PHP 8.0 for Windows when it is released

PHP scripting language is generally used in web development and was created by Danish-Canadian programmer Rasmus Lerdorf in 1994. The current stable version in use is PHP 7.4 and PHP 8.0 scheduled for release in November 2020. Every time, PHP’s new version is released or an older version is updated, Microsoft immediately updates its Windows operating system to support the latest PHP version.

Not any more. Microsoft PHP Windows Lead Dale Hirt stated on the PHP Internals mailing list that they will not be supporting PHP 8.0 for Windows operating system. Hirt’s comments have surprised many tech enthusiasts as well as PHP backers as Microsoft has been the backbone of PHP development.

While it refused to reveal why it will stop supporting the development of PHP 8, the company says that bug fixes and security patches will continue to be released for the lifecycles of the current PHP versions 7.2, 7.3, and 7.4. The internal mail states that Microsoft will “not […] be supporting PHP for Windows in any capacity for version 8.0 and beyond”.

In the PHP mailing list, Dale Hirt explains:

We currently support PHP with development and build efforts for PHP 7.3, and PHP 7.4.  In addition, we help with building PHP 7.2 on Windows when security fixes are required. However, as PHP 8.0 is now ramping up, we wanted to let the community know what our current plans are going forward. We know that the current cadence is 2 years from release for bug fixes, and 1 year after that for security fixes. This means that PHP 7.2 will be going out of support in November.  PHP 7.3 will be going into security fix mode only in November.  PHP 7.4 will continue to have another year of bug fix and then one year of security fixes.  We are committed to maintaining development and building of as long as they are officially supported.  We are not, however, going to be supporting PHP for Windows in any capacity for version 8.0 and beyond.

However, this doesn’t mean that PHP 8.0 will not be supported by Windows 10 or Windows 7. PHP Release Manager Sara Golemon’s post on Reddit says that Microsoft will not be the one building and supporting PHP 8.0.

“For some possibly missing context, Microsoft runs https://windows.php.net and produces all the official builds of PHP for Windows. If you run `php.exe`, or `mod_php7.dll` or whatever the websapi versions are actually called, then you either use Microsoft’s own builds of PHP or you’re compiling it yourself.

Industry watchers say dwindling support for PHP and Microsoft’s own Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) for Windows 10 may be the reason behind Microsoft’s unwillingness to continue with PHP 8.0. WSL for Windows 10 already supports PHP 7.4 and will support PHP 8.0 when released therefore Microsoft sees no need for native PHP 8.0 build in Windows.

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