Proposal to Upgrade the Minimum Requirements
Based on millions of sites already running WordPress 5.0, over 85% are using PHP 5.6 or above, and 98.5% are using MySQL 5.5 or above.
Gary propose that in April 2019 the minimum required PHP version will be bump to 5.6 and the minimum required MySQL version will be bump to 5.5. According to the proposal, sites that continue using older PHP versions continue receiving security updates and bug fixes, but won’t be able to upgrade to the latest major WordPress versions.
In addition, Gary propose that in December 2019 the minimum required PHP version will be bump to 7, depending on feedback and effectiveness of the upgrade process.
The last official upgrade of Minimum Requirements was in 2011 when WordPress 3.2 was released, it abandoned PHP/MySQL 4.x in favor of PHP 5.2 and MySQL 5.0.15. Since then there where no official requirements upgrades, instead the core team added Recommend Requirements.
WordPress updated the Minimum Required PHP versions 3 times (2005, 2008 and 2011) and the Minimum Required MySQL version 4 times (2005, 2007, 2009 and 2011). If the proposal will be accepted, more websites will use the latest software available.
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