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PHP.net:
Release of PHP 5.4.36, 5.5.20 and 5.6.4 (Includes Security Fix)
December 19, 2014 @ 10:39:54

The PHP.net has announced the releases of several new versions in all of the current major series, all correcting several bugs including a CVE-related (security) related to unserialization. This security issue was reported in CVE-2014-8142 and relates to this bug report. It is highly recommended that you upgrade your versions to correct this potential security vulnerability. The latest versions are:

As always, you can download these latest releases directly from the downloads page or http://windows.php.net/download for the Windows users. If you're interested in the other bugs fixed in these releases, check out the full Changelog.

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language release bugfix php55 php56 php54 security cve20148242

Link: http://php.net/archive/2014.php#id2014-12-18-3

PHP.net:
PHP 5.4.35, 5.5.19 and 5.6.3 Released
November 14, 2014 @ 12:08:25

Several new versions of the PHP language have been released, including several bugfixes and security-related issues (including CVE-2014-3710. Updates are available for all current major versions:

Upgrading is recommended, especially if you're making use of the fileinfo functionality. You can get these latest versions from the main downloads page (or the Windows.php.net). You can find out about the other changes in these releases in the Changelog

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language release security update php54 php55 php56 fileinfo

Link: http://php.net/archive/2014.php#id2014-11-13-3

PHP.net:
PHP 5.6.1 released
October 03, 2014 @ 10:40:32

The PHP development group has officially released the latest version in the PHP 5.6.x series today: PHP 5.6.1, largely a bugfix release.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 5.6.1. Several bugs were fixed in this release. All PHP 5.6 users are encouraged to upgrade to this version.

Changes in this release include updates to the language core, DOM handling, GD image functionality and a change with the new built-in debugger, phpdbg. You can see the full list of changes in the Changelog for this release. As always, you can download this latest release either from the main downloads page or from windows.php.net for the Windows users out there.

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language release bugfix php56 update

Link: http://php.net/index.php#id2014-10-02-1

NetTuts.com:
PHP 5.6 What's New
October 02, 2014 @ 10:58:59

On the NetTuts.com site there's a new article posted talking about some of the new stuff that comes bundled in PHP 5.6 (the first stable version of which was released at the end of August 2014).

It's been a long time coming, but we finally have a new version of PHP. With it comes a some nice, new features, improvements to existing features, as well as features that have been removed or marked as deprecated. Let's dive in and take a look at everything that's offered by the latest version.

There's several items on the list, broken up into various sections, each with brief explanations:

  • Backward Incompatible Changes (ex: json_decode, mcrypt)
  • New Features (including constant scalar expressions, argument unpacking, phpdbg)
  • Deprecated Features (call to static from non-static context, removal of HTTP_RAW_POST_DATA)

They also link to the list of all of the changed and new functions updated in the PHP 5.6.0 release and moving forward.

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php56 new feature deprecated backwards incompatible break

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/articles/php-56-whats-new--cms-22101

PHP.net:
PHP 5.6.0 released
August 28, 2014 @ 10:36:15

The PHP development group is happy to announce the official release of the latest in the PHP 5 series - PHP 5.6.0. This release includes lots of bug fixes and several new features including:

There's also several things that will break compatibility with code written for previous versions including changes in JSON decoding, GMP resource handling and updates to the mcrypt functions. For more information on these changes and the list of things to know before using it, check out the migration guide. As always, you can get this latest version from the downloads page or windows.php.net for the Windows users.

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language release update major verson php56

Link: http://php.net/archive/2014.php#id2014-08-28-1

PHP.net:
PHP 5.6.0RC4 is available
August 15, 2014 @ 10:58:13

The PHP development group has announced the release of the latest Release Candidate in the PHP 5.6.x series - PHP 5.6.0RC4. This is a not-for-production release of 5.6 prior to the stable version being released.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of the fourth and hopefully lates release candidate of PHP 5.6.0. As we entered the feature freeze with beta1, this is a bugfix-only release. All users of PHP are encouraged to test this version carefully, and report any bugs in the bug tracking system.

This latest release candidate includes changes related to the Fileinfo handling, GD functionality, an OpenSSL socket issue and many more. You can download this latest release from the QA downloads page (or here for Windows users).

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language release releasecandidate php56 test bugfix

Link: http://php.net/index.php#id2014-08-14-2

Kinsta.com:
Real-World WordPress Benchmarks with PHP5.5 PHP5.6 PHP-NG and HHVM
July 30, 2014 @ 12:26:51

The Kinsta.com blog has a new post with the results of some benchmarking they've done around WordPress comparing PHP 5.5, PHP 5.6 (PHPNG) and HHVM in response time (well, time taken for the request).

If you remember we wrote an article a good couple of months ago when WordPress 3.9 came out that HHVM was fully supported beginning with that release, and we were all happy about it. The initial benchmark results showed HHVM to be far more superior than the Zend engine that's currently powering all PHP builds.

[...] Obviously you have to compromise based on your (or rather your sites') needs but is it worth it? How much of a performance gain can you expect by switching to HHVM? [...] Today I finally took the time to set up a test environment and do some tests to compare a couple of different builds with a fresh out of the box WordPress install and one that has a bunch of content added plus runs WooCommerce!

The testing was all done locally on virtual machines (using Vagrant setups) and two different kinds of test WordPress installations. They share the results in the post, showing the differences between the HHVM installations and the plain PHP ones. The results also show the differences between having the opcode cache on and off. Curious to see how it would perform outside of a local system, they also pushed the same configurations out to a DigitalOcean instance with some slightly different results.

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wordpress benchmark php55 php56 phpng hhvm compare results

Link: https://kinsta.com/blog/real-world-wordpress-benchmarks-with-php5-5-php5-6-php-ng-and-hhvm/

SitePoint PHP Blog:
PHP 5.6 End of Beta
June 09, 2014 @ 12:08:15

The SitePoint PHP blog has a new post from editor Bruno Skvorc looking at the final beta for PHP 5.6, the latest bugfix release for this upcoming version. He talks about some of the major changes, security upgrades and other fixes included in the release.

On June 5th 2014, the PHP group announced the fourth and final beta of the 5.6 version. This milestone ends the beta program and begins the RC program (currently planned for June 19th), which will from now on focus exclusively on making sure the version is stable enough for release. As is customary with a beta program, no new features were added since beta 1 - all the releases were bugfix and improvement patches only.

New features coming in PHP 5.6 include exponentiation via the "**" operator, the change of the default character set to UTF-8 and several security updates (based on releasely released vulnerabilities in underlying libraries PHP uses). There are a few backwards compatibility breaks that come with the new release as well as deprecated features and various other smaller updates.

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beta php56 changes features bugfix release

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/php-5-6-end-beta

Lorna Mitchell:
PHP 5.6 Benchmarks
May 19, 2014 @ 09:32:18

Lorna Mitchell has put together a set of benchmarks for PHP 5.6 comparing them to the three previous minor versions, PHP 5.5, 5.4 and 5.3 based around the same setup as her previous benchmarks of PHP 5.4.

A while ago I did some benchmarks on how different versions of PHP perform in comparison to one another. This isn't a performance measure in absolute terms, this was just benchmarking them all on the same laptop while it wasn't doing anything else, and averaging the time it took to run the benchmark script. Recently I ran it again for versions PHP 5.3 through PHP 5.6 and I thought I'd share my results.

There's a steady drop in execution time over the series of versions, with PHP 5.6 coming in the shortest. She also includes the actual numbers of the results in case you'd like to chart them out yourself.

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php56 benchmark previous version execution time

Link: http://www.lornajane.net/posts/2014/php-5-6-benchmarks

PHP.net:
PHP 5.6.0beta2 released
May 02, 2014 @ 12:17:35

The PHP development group has officially released the latest beta in in the PHP 5.6.x series - PHP 5.6.0beta2. This is a development release and should not be used in production.

The PHP development team announces the immediate availability of PHP 5.6.0beta2. As we entered the feature freeze with beta1, this release is almost exclusively a bugfix-only release. All users of PHP are encouraged to test this version carefully, and report any bugs in the bug tracking system.

Among the new features added in this new beta are things like the watchpoint support for phpdbg and a new fetching mode for mysqlnd which uses less memory but implies more memory copy. For more information about the other changes included in this release, check out the evolving documentation or the full NEWS file. You can download this beta from the QA download page (or for the Windows users, here).

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beta release php56 language update

Link: http://php.net/index.php#id2014-05-02-1


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