Introducing Craft 3

By Paul,

December 2017

Last week, Pixel & Tonic announced the release of version 3 of our favourite CMS, Craft.

Here at Toward we've been using Craft for many years. We love it for it's flexibility and how easy it is to develop with. Our clients also love it for how simple it is to use. This new version contains a host of improvements and new features:

Image editing

A request we've had from several clients in the past is "Can I edit images directly from the control panel?". This wasn't possible in Craft 2 but with Craft 3 this functionality is built right in. Image assets that are uploaded via the control panel can now be edited in the browser from the control panel. Images can be rotated, flipped and cropped by the user as required. Transformed images can be then be saved as a new asset if needed.

Image editing interface in Craft 3 control panel

Speed improvements

Whilst Craft 2 has always been pretty nippy (especially running on PHP 7), Craft 3 makes huge gains in terms of speed. The system runs now on the Yii 2 framework and has been completely rewritten for better performance across the board. Initial loading times, query speeds (especially with large numbers of entries) and memory consumption have all seen dramatic improvements.

Statistics on performance improvements in Craft 3


There are occasions where a client needs a number of related sites running concurrently, whether that's for multiple sister brands or for marketing campaign landing pages under separate domains. Whilst it's been possible to get this working in Craft 2 previously, it has always felt like a hacky workaround. Craft 3 addresses this by adding native support for running multiple sites from a single install.

Plugin Store

Finding a Craft plugin for a specific piece of functionality has always meant searching around various developer websites until you can find the one that suits your needs. Craft 3 now contains a Plugin Store that allows admin users to browse and install plugins directly from the control panel. A welcome addition, this centralised approach will help cut down on the time spent hunting around for what you need.

Screenshot of the Craft 3 Plugin Store

These enhancements (along with several others I haven't mentioned) help take what was already a great CMS to the next level. We can't wait to start using it!

You can read more about all the other improvements included in Craft 3 on the release candidate page.