Umbraco V5

What happened to version 5?

What happened? And why is it nicknamed “the-version-that-shall-not-be-named?” 🤔

If you’ve ever glanced through the history of Umbraco versions, you might have noticed that version 5 is kind of… missing. 

But Umbraco version 5 did manage to live. At least for a short period of time: It was born and published on February 2011 and killed at Codegarden 2012. 

The ambitious goal of Umbraco version 5

The goal of version 5 was to create the ultimate version of Umbraco with a top-notch source code meant to prove that an open-source project could compete with other CMSs on the market. 

What started out as an ambitious project to improve Umbraco ended up being the creation of the very thing that Umbraco is against. 

Version 5 wasn’t as seamless nor as simple as Umbraco is known for. The source code, while perfectly constructed, was so complex that it was almost impenetrable to normal people. At the same time, the community was not involved in the creation of version 5, and with its added level of complexity, it was getting impossible for people to contribute and understand. 

In short, version 5 wasn’t very friendly.


“Killed” at Codegarden 2012

Now, version 5 was supposed to be the darling of Codegarden 2012, but at the pre-Codegarden retreat people realized that this version couldn’t be fixed, and even if it could, it wasn’t very Umbraco.

HQ members and Community members got to talking and it culminated in an honest and open conclusion. 

Things had to change - and so it was decided that Umbraco version 5 had to be killed off.

As you might imagine by now, this decision wasn’t popular at first. So much time and effort had gone into this version. Now how do you announce this to a crowd of 400 people without killing the vibe of Codegarden as well? 

One solution is to order a gravestone and 300 roses. This way, people could say their goodbyes to version 5 and have a good laugh at the same time 🌹 

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Going back to our roots 

In the end, killing version 5 was the most responsible decision: a decision that respects our Community, our core values and everything that we stand for. 

A decision that made it possible to return to our roots and focus on simplicity, transparency and community involvement. 


Hopefully this explains the gap between version 4 and version 6, and you understand our story just a tiny bit better now 😊

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