Introduction

In 2016, PrestaShop released its new version – PrestaShop 1.7. This version inherits the powerful features of the previous version, PrestaShop 1.6,  and has many notable changes to improve the user experience.

As a result, Prestashop 1.6 users find it necessary to upgrade to 1.7. In this article, I’m going to show you the reasons why you need to upgrade Prestashop 1.6 to 1.7, and also the detailed guide to upgrade your PrestaShop 1.6 to 1.7 version.

Why upgrade PrestaShop 1.6  to 1.7?

With PrestaShop 1.7, its main purpose is to improve user experience on Product Creation and the Module page, and also to make it easier to create a front office theme. In practice, store owners can easily upload new products and manage modules.

The PrestaShop version 1.7 now includes the Symfony2 framework which brings significant improvements that reduce the learning curve for PHP developers. As a result, both developers and store owners can benefit from PrestaShop 1.7.

Scroll down this article, I would like to list some new features of PrestaShop 1.7 compare to the older version:

  • An easier product upload interface
  • A new translation system
  • A better checkout process

1. An easier product upload interface

The Symphony2’s Twig framework has impacted the product upload process quite positively. The new interface brings out a brand new way to add products to the catalog and it’s far better than what Prestashop merchants have been doing in older versions.

Specifically,  major work has been done to reduce the number of tabs in the product upload interface. For more specific, the PrestaShop 1.7 maintains only 6 tabs, instead of 12 tabs in older versions. Moreover, the tabs organization is quite simple, which makes it much more user-friendly.

Adding product in PrestaShop 1.6
Adding product in PrestaShop 1.6
New interface PrestaShop 1.7
New interface PrestaShop 1.7

2. A new translation system

If you have a Prestashop store and you want it to be multilingual, then you need to add more languages in the admin panel. However, the problem is that some phrases, especially modules and email, the translation system will make some mistakes.

In addition, PrestaShop 1.6 has a translation system which is not optimal. Some files have to be translated one by one at a time. Additionally, users usually face some errors when using the old translation system such as lack of contents or duplicate strings.

Fortunately, with PrestaShop 1.7, the Translation system has been revamped. The new translation system uses domains to identify strings, merges repeated strings to one, which saves a lot of time.

Furthermore, the system provides a search bar to help store owners easily find the words they need to edit. Afterward, the adjustments will be saved in a new database, so you will not lose your translations if you are planning to upgrade your PrestaShop.

The PrestaShop 1.7 translation system
The PrestaShop 1.7 translation system

3. A better checkout process

It is clear that the shorter the checkout process, the better the probability that the client is going to complete the checkout process. The PrestaShop 1.7 replaces the checkout process in 5 steps with only one single page. The design is very simple to prevent the client from being distracted.

By default, visitors do not have to log in to their account to make a purchase, which is known as Guest Checkout. This is a way to avoid interrupting clients during the checkout process. However, the client will be encouraged to register after his purchase. Additionally, from any stage of the checkout process, customers will know exactly the price and the number of products they ordered without clicking away from the page.

Checkout process
Checkout process

How to successfully upgrade PrestaShop 1.6 to 1.7?

In this article, I would like to describe two ways: Using the LitExtension tool and Upgrade manually to help you understand fully the upgrade process.

Manual Upgrade by using PrestaShop’s system upgrade requires highly technical skills. Basically, you have to deal with backing up the database, repairing or fixing corrupted data. However, this option is free and thus much more economical for e-merchants.

The second option, using an automated migration tool by LitExtension, can make the upgrade process much easier. Because of being an automated migration tool, there is no technical requirement. Just a few clicks to set up and select entities, the whole process is ready to upgrade quickly and accurately.

Compared to the manual upgrade mentioned above, LitExtension is properly more powerful. It allows you to transfer not only basic data (such as products, customers, and orders,…) but also some advanced features like migrating SEO URLs, or Customers Password,… As a result, after upgrading your PrestaShop store 1.6 to 1.7, your store can perform better.

Therefore, if you are finding the most optimal solution to migrate your store from Prestashop 1.6 to 1.7, LitExtension is the must-go-to option.

Keep reading to find the instructions of both methods!

Using LitExtension – an automated migration tool

Step 1: Set up carts’ information

To start the upgrade, Register an account or Sign In on the LitExtension website. You can also use your Facebook account or Google account for this process.

Login to the LitExtension website
Login to the LitExtension website

After that, click Create new migration to start the upgrade process.

Select your PrestaShop as a Source Cart, then fill in the Source Cart Url. You have to download the connector file, extract it, and upload it to your root folder. This connector file will create a connection between your PrestaShop database and the LitExtension tool. Follow similar steps with your PrestaShop as a Target Cart.

Set up carts
Set up carts

Step 2: Select entities

LitExtension supports almost every necessary data to upgrade your PrestaShop store. You can choose some data such as Products, Customers, Orders,… or choose all of them by clicking Select all.

Select entities
Select entities

Besides the basic data, LitExtension also provides additional options to upgrade your PrestaShop store that will help you extend the upgrading possibilities. For example, the Customer Password Plugin will help to preserve your customers’ passwords. This helps your customers automatically log in to their accounts instead of resetting passwords or registering a new account.

Step 3: Perform the Prestashop 1.6 to 1.7 upgrade process.

You can start with the demo migration by clicking Start Free Demo Migration to see how the upgrade Prestashop 1.6 to 1.7 happened. It will take a few minutes for the demo process. However, keep in mind that the LitExtension tool will move only limited data to the new PrestaShop 1.7.

Demo migration
Demo migration

After the demo, you can start the full-upgrade immediately by clicking Start the full migration. Since the process is cloud-based, you totally can turn off your PC and take a break. The LitExtension will send you a notification email when the upgrade finishes.

Start Full Migration
Start Full Migration

Using system upgrade

Before starting to upgrade Prestashop 1.6 to 1.7 manually, you have to make a backup of your Prestashop. For further information about how to backup Prestashop, please visit this article.

Step 1: Turning on maintenance mode

Since it may cause unexpected problems for your PrestaShop store during the upgrade, the maintenance mode will help you avoid these issues. In addition, your visitors will see a maintenance message in their web browser instead of the normal store, and they can not place any orders until your upgrade is complete.

To turn on the maintenance mode, follow this instruction:

  • On PrestaShop 1.7, in Shop parameters > General > Maintenance tab.
  • On PrestaShop 1.6, in Shop parameters > Maintenance.

Adding your IP address will allow you to access your shop while it’s in maintenance mode. That way, you can make sure everything is working right before allowing your customers to access it again.

Step 2: File copy

In this step, the PrestaShop files will be upgraded by copying the existing file in PrestaShop 1.6, then pasting it into PrestaShop 1.7. In practice, your Prestashop 1.7 store will contain all the files that you created and put online since you start PrestaShop: images, logos, pictures, translations, modules, etc. As a result, you can safely keep all the customizations from your store.

Copy file
Copy file

Conflicts may happen when merging the new vendor/folder with the old one. Fortunately, you can totally solve this problem by deleting the folder in the existing shop before copying the new one. If the warning box appears that files already exist in the destination folder, select Overwrite to continue.

Step 3: Database upgrade

Once you finish copying the files, your PrestaShop database is ready to run the upgrade. Please note that some web hosting providers give you two user accounts to access your database, one with full privileges, and the other is for use in scripts with limited rights. To be able to use this Database upgrade script, you have to use the account with full privileges.

All the changes to apply have been defined in the `install` folder, running them can be done with a specific PHP script.

To run the file install/upgrade/upgrade.php, you can do it on the browser by reaching the address: http://<shop_domain>/install/upgrade/upgrade.php, or from your server’s command line: PHP install/upgrade/upgrade.php

Step 4: Clean up

Before going further, you should clean a few things to optimize the database, and also decline the time-loading speed when accessing PrestaShop 1.7. Here are two main things you need to consider deleting:

  • The install folder, used to run the database upgrades, is not necessary anymore and you can safely delete it.
  • When opening your store (in the front-end or back-end) on your browser, you may run into some visual problems. Because the cache is serving your old assets.  Reload them by force-refreshing the page or clearing your browser’s cache.

Step 5: Modules upgrade

Your modules files have been upgraded during the file copy. However, many of them may require additional changes in the database. Therefore, you have to carefully check the module page in your Back Office to see if upgrades are waiting to be run.

Go to your administration panel and log in. You will notice the version displayed has changed on the login page. After that,  in the menu, click on the module page to reach your catalog.

On PrestaShop 1.6, the module page can be found in Module & Services, then click on Update all at the top of the page to run all available upgrades:

The PrestaShop 1.6 Modules and Services
The PrestaShop 1.6 Modules and Services

Conclusion

Hopefully, this article contains the information that you are looking for.

If you’re planning to upgrade your store from PrestaShop 1.6 to 1.7,  select the automated migration tool by LitExtension. As the world-leading shopping cart migration tool with 140,000+ successful migrations for 40,000+ worldwide customers, the LitExtension tool will transfer all your data automatically, quickly, and accurately, especially, with no technical skills required.

For any further information about LitExtension, please feel free to contact us!

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