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Robby Russell 🐘🚂 for Planet Argon

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Rails 6.1 is Coming Soon! How to Prepare Your App Now

The next version of Ruby on Rails is currently being tested by the community and we anticipate a stable release in the next week.

Rails 6.1 is here! There are a number of memory optimizations, which should improve performance (aka speed!) of your Rails apps.

There are a number of new features, too. While there have been third-party libraries available for managing multiple databases, horizontal sharing, and switching connections on a per-database basis, it will be nice to now have this available for all applications.

Another nice feature coming to Rails will allow developers to enable a feature that will disable all eager loading of database associations. This will help us shut down those pesky N+1 queries.

I know that our team is thrilled to see that we'll be able to put an associated destroy call into background jobs.

Read more about other upcoming Ruby on Rails 6.1 features.

Is your Rails app ready to update to 6.1?

Are you running on Rails 6.0.x? Yes, your application is ready for an upgrade.

If not, what version are you running?

Rails Version Your Status Latest Release
6.1.x-rc 🎉 You're on top of things! Nov 2020
6.0.x ✅ Ready to upgrade Oct 2020
5.2.x ⚠️ Almost Ready Sept 2020
5.1.x ⚠️ Upgrade to 5.2.x ASAP! March 2019
5.0.x 🚨🙀 OVERDUE for upgrade March 2019
4.2.x 🚨😱💀 Bad situation May 2020
4.1.x 🚨😱💀 Bad situation July 2016
4.0.x 🚨😱💀 Bad situation Jan 2015
3.2.x 🚨😱💀 Bad situation Sept 2016

Why is everything prior to 5.1.x looking bad for you? Your application is no longer receiving security patches nor bug fixes from the Rails Core Team. (See the official Rails Security Policy)

We recommend that Ruby on Rails be upgraded one major/minor version at a time. For example, if you are running on 5.1 now, you need to upgrade to 5.2 next.

In an ideal world, your goal should be to get your application running on 6.0 by the end of 2021.

🤓 Read When Should You Upgrade Your Rails Application? to learn more about our rationale.

Wait, our developers think we should rewrite our application – do we still need to upgrade?

To be honest, we are not fans of big rewrites.

Our purpose at Planet Argon is to FIGHT THE BIG REWRITE. We even produce a podcast called Maintainable where we speak with experts in the industry on how to overcome the problems associated with technical debt and legacy code. We live and breathe this.

We understand the temptation to exclaim, "TIME FOR A REDO!" But we know, all-to-well, that rewrites are notoriously unsuccessful. If you need to maintain your existing app while building a new app, in parallel, you have a big task ahead of you. Furthermore, if you haven't established a cohesive process to keep that technology up-to-date, what makes you think you'll have better success with a different technology stack?

🤓 Read 3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Outsource Your Rails Upgrades to learn more.

Will our Rails upgrade hurt us?

Large companies like Shopify, Basecamp, and Github have been investing a lot of their Engineering time to contribute back to the core Rails framework. As a community, we are aiming to make sure that major/minor upgrades have limited breaking changes.

We're hoping that upgrades will continue to get easier than they were several years ago. Might that be one of the reasons why you're stuck where you're at? Did you navigate an expensive upgrade before?

Interested in a fresh set of eyes and a free action plan?

Get in touch so that we can help you explore a Rails 6 Upgrade.

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