A couple of weeks ago I was asked for recommendations from a long-standing client for a solution for maintaining their Magento 1 store for ~2 months beyond the June end of life date – and, with this not being the first time I’ve been asked about this, I decided to write up a blog post. I’ve discussed this with a number of other consultants and experienced Magento developers in the past and I think most people are aligned on the best options / approach.
Overall, as with most people, we recommend moving away from Magento 1.x and moving onto either Magento 2, or another platform. The main reasons for this are:
- Any development budget invested in your Magento 1 platform is wasted (assuming you’re only using it temporarily)
- The platform isn’t actively being developed / improved
- Third party modules and service providers are gradually stopping support
- The obvious security risks of being on an unsupported platform (as well as long term issues with PHP version support too)
- Magento 2 (should you be moving to M2) has lots of benefits (mainly in terms of architecture and features) over Magento 1
However, I know a lot of large retailers are going to be in a similar position as a result of delayed replatforming of migration efforts. This client is a very complex retailer who is moving onto Salesforce Commerce Cloud – which has ended up being delayed.
Overall, our recommendation is to work with a reputable organisation who is actively looking to provide a proper service around supporting Magento 1, whilst also having extensive experience with the platform and a good understanding of security etc. We’re currently recommending the following companies:
Mage One seems to be the most mainstream option and lots of people are recommending them. Their service, which is also highly regarded within the Magento community, is managed by a team of well-known Magento developers including Rico Neitzel, Carmen Bremen and Fabian Blechschmidt.
Their offering is based on fixed monthly pricing which goes up based on the turnover of your store with the initial tiers. There’s lots more information on their website, which can be found here.
OpenMage’s offering is slightly different, in that they are essentially creating their own community-driven repository, which is based on Magento 1. This option is designed to act as a longer-term alternative to Magento 1 Community Edition. This initiative is aiming to drive future improvements (which is the difference between this and the next option) and is supported via a team of community engineers.
Mark Lewis / community initiative
Mark Lewis (Founder of Netalico) is a well-known member of the Magento community and also for being an advocate of Magento 1 – he’s openly talked about how Magento 1 can be supported and he’s written lots of good advice for merchants looking to avoid migrating to M2 or other platforms.
Mark is working on a community-driven initiative, similar to Open Mage, where they’ll create a supported platform based on Magento 1 CE – again, this could be a really good option and it’s likely to be both affordable and well-supported. Mark did say that what they’re likely to create will be based on creating more of a short-term option, rather than a longer term platform option.
Other community-driven initiatives
There are likely to be a number of other initiatives / offerings launched between now and June, with Maier Bianchi and various others talking about creating something. Maier runs Bemeir (a Magento agency), is a long-standing member of the Magento community and a big advocate of Magento 1. I’ve heard him talk about supporting a Magento 1 platform many times and he’s aiming to build this service as a joint venture with another Magento veteran.
All of these companies / options are actively looking to either provide support and provide patching for M1 stores or create a longer-term option based on the Magento 1 platform.
It’s worth noting that most of these options are based on Magento community edition – options for Magento enterprise retailers will be different (due to terms within the M1 Enterprise software licensing).