Upgrading to Kentico 9

Being a Kentico eCommerce specialist I thought it might help if I spoke about what I expect when performing an upgrade to Kentico 9. Below I share my thoughts and suggestions.

Kentico 9 release

Kentico 9 was officially released to the public on Tuesday 24 November 2015, at the annual Kentico Connection conference.

With good reason, there’s been some massive buzz around this release, as it represents a big leap forward for the platform. In addition to a stack of improvements, Kentico has pushed the boat out with some new enterprise grade features such as class-leading Continuous Integration (CI) tools, ASP.NET MVC development support, and brand new Integrated Campaign Management, allowing users to harness the huge volume of data behind Kentico EMS.

What To Expect

Each site is different and will have it’s own unique requirements, however here are some common items we expect when upgrading any site from 8.x to 9.0.


This is a major version upgrade, with some significant changes included, so we must expect a bit of downtime. With good processes in place downtime should (in most instances) be able to be limited to 1 hour or less, but we always recommend pushing the upgrade through after hours or during a low-traffic window. We do of course have certain clients that run environments where any downtime isn’t possible, and are able to deal with those through our specialist magic division.

Development & Staging Environments 

We know we’re good. But we aren’t silly enough to think we’re bulletproof enough to avoid the best practice process of developing in a development environment, and pushing the upgrade initially to a staging environment which mimics it’s planned/destined live environment. Upgrading straight to a live environment is playing with fire.

API changes

Expect minor changes being needed to custom code, as a result of API changes in Kentico 9.

Database changes

Whilst this won’t affect most customers other than making things faster, if your Kentico project involves significant customisation involving database tables, this will likely need to be analysed. This is a fairly major change in version 9, handling optimisation of the underlying database views that drive much of the content management side of Kentico.

How much will it cost?

The million dollar question!

At the bottom end of the scale for very simple Kentico websites with little to no customisation, you are looking at approximately 1-2 days of development and quality assurance/testing time. At the other end of the scale, for those sites that are large and customised, development time can stretch out to approximately 5-7 days with a couple of days on top for testing.

If you’re looking to build a Kentico website, or need to upgrade an existing deployment please get in touch and we’ll be happy to discuss and give you a comprehensive estimate.

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