Update Drupal core from 8.7 to 8.8 with Composer

Drupal 8.8 is stable! This release includes many improvements for things like the Media Library, workspaces, and migrations. Another change from previous versions to Drupal 8.8.0 with Composer is the change from using the community contributed composer template to the new official drupal/recommended-project template.

This blog will guide you through upgrading from Drupal core 8.7 to 8.8

1) Before we start

Make sure you have Pathauto 1.6 or greater. If you need to update, please run:

composer require drupal/pathauto:^1.6

2) Backup site database and files at sites/default/files

3) Remove/replace old dev packages

composer remove --dev webflo/drupal-core-require-dev

If you do not need the developer tools, you can stop here. If you would like to install them again using the official method, run:

composer require --dev drupal/core-dev

4) Update conflicting soft dependencies

Require new Drupal core and dependencies

composer require --update-with-dependencies \
drupal/core:^8.8 \
symfony/finder:^3.4 \

Require new core-dev package and dependencies

composer require --dev --update-with-dependencies \
drupal/core-dev:^8.8 \

Remove temporary required dependencies

composer remove -n \
symfony/finder \
symfony/filesystem \

5) Refresh opcode cache

6) Update database config and schema

drush updb
drush cr
drush config-export

7) Update settings.php

In Drupal 8.8.0 the sync directory is defined in $settings and not $config_directories, and so the Settings.php file should be updated.

change from:

$config_directories['sync'] = 'foo/bar';


$settings['config_sync_directory'] = 'foo/bar';

8) Verify your website

Go to /admin/reports/status and check the general status of the website. Also, go to /admin/reports/dblog and look on the logs for errors or messages that are the result of the core update, make sure everything was updated properly.

9) That is all. Your Drupal is updated.

Known issues and workarounds

If you get any errors running composer update or composer require, try running composer prohibits {name of the package} this command should help you understand what are the dependency problems.

Other related issues and blog posts with further help:

1 thought on “Update Drupal core from 8.7 to 8.8 with Composer

  1. Thanks! Your advice works like a charm! A few points:-

    1) I don’t think “Require new core-dev package and dependencies” is required if dev isn’t required in step 4)

    2) update.php can be used for step 6) instead of drush

    3) Is it possible to also transit to the new drupal template you refer to drupal/recommended-project?

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