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Umbraco 9.1 Release Candidate

See and try out the new features in the upcoming release

Rune 1 (2)
Written by Rune Strand

Umbraco 9.1 is only a few weeks away and you know that means - a release candidate is ready for your testing pleasure, today! History Cleanup makes sure your Umbraco installations are not too messy, there’s a redesigned 404 page, improvements to the Richtext Editor and a whole lot more. Welcome to the first minor release candidate for Umbraco 9 🥳


To help you provide us with feedback, I’ve gathered an overview of some of the items that you can help test for this RC. We have run internal testing and are very happy with the current state of the build - but extra polishing and testing are always helpful. So if you have time to help - or just find yourself super curious, feel free to dive into the 9.1. RC today. 

What’s in Umbraco 9.1?

Umbraco 9.1 is the first minor release for Umbraco 9. With the release of Umbraco 9 we’ve moved to “proper” semantic versioning and as such, there should be no breaking changes in minor releases going forward. You can read more about versioning in the Product Knowledge Center

Now let’s take a look at what you get with Umbraco 9.1:

History Cleanup

This new feature provides some much-requested functionality to your Umbraco installations that help keep the database footprint of Umbraco at a more reasonable level and some more efficient querying of the database.

Every time a content item is saved in Umbraco a new version (or revision) is saved in the database. This allows you to roll back to previous versions and provides a history of changes. It also means that a content item that has been worked on a lot can potentially consist of many database entries of which only one is in use (the published version) and just a few others might be relevant such as unpublished work. 

History Cleanup does exactly what the name suggests. It cleans the history for content items ensuring there is not a lot of excess data. 

Scheduled cleanup

The cleanup is scheduled to run daily and will go through content items and clean up any unnecessary versions based on the cleanup policy.

Cleanup policy

The default cleanup policy is to remove all versions that are more than 4 days old except for the latest version which will be kept for 90 days.

You can of course configure the cleanup policy to your liking and either add new defaults for all document types or disable the cleanup entirely.

If you are upgrading an existing installation to 9.1, the History Cleanup will be disabled by default and you’ll need to enable it in order to benefit from scheduled cleanups. This is all configured in appsettings.json:

Granular Cleanup Policies

It is also possible to override or disable the cleanup policies for a specific Document Type. This is done in the backoffice on the Permissions tab for each Document Type.

Umbraco 9.1 History Cleanup Policy 1270X566px

Pinning versions

We’re working on extending the functionality of History Cleanup by adding the ability to pin specific versions on a Content item which means they will not be removed during the cleanup. This might make it into the final release of 9.1 or will come later, likely in Umbraco 9.2.

History Cleanup will also be added to Umbraco 8 with the release of Umbraco 8.18.

Improved default 404 page

The default 404 page in Umbraco is no longer “left intentionally ugly”. It has been redesigned to provide a simple and clean default 404 page. There are 2 versions of the new 404 page. A simple “Page not found” message will be displayed if you are not running in debug mode.

Umbraco 9.1 404 Page Not Found 1912X1031px

If the installation is in debug mode, the page will also provide links to documentation for how to customise the 404 page.

Umbraco 9.1 404 Page Not Found Debug Mode 1912X1031px

Examine Dashboard improvements

The Examine Dashboard has been improved with some changes to styling (the row width is now enforced) and the ability to toggle which fields are shown on the dashboard. It makes it easier to inspect and debug your examine indexes.


Click for full-screen video.

Friendlier RTE

You’ll also find some great improvements to the Richtext Editor (RTE) in the backoffice. When the RTE was in focus previously, it annoyingly overwrote the ctrl+P shortcut for publishing in Umbraco with TinyMCEs shortcut for printing the page. This has now been changed, so crtl+P now does as expected, also when using an RTE :)

Furthermore, the RTE has been updated to be a little friendlier when inserting links without having text highlighted. Prior to Umbraco 9.1, this would result in no link being inserted. Now a link will be created with the URL as the anchor text. If a Media item or Content page is referenced the name of the item will be automatically inserted. 

And so much more...

Aside from the above-mentioned features, there is a long list of small tweaks and fixes in the release. You can see the full list in the Umbraco 9.1 release notes.

What to test

We’re looking forward to your feedback on Umbraco 9.1. All feedback is naturally welcome but there are some areas that are worth giving special attention to:

History Cleanup

This new feature adds a lot of functionality and configuration options and it’s something we’d appreciate feedback on how it works for you.

Migration from Umbraco 8.17 to Umbraco 9.1

A bug has been fixed when migrating from Umbraco 8.17 to 9.1. If you’ve encountered this (with 8.17 to 9.0) it would be great to hear if this is now resolved.

Readonly DBs for load-balancing

In some cases, a read-only database is required for some load-balancing scenarios. This should now be possible with 9.1. You can read more in the PR description.

You're of course more than welcome to test out any of the other improvements and fixes and let us know if you find any issues.

How to test

First, you need to make a new Umbraco installation from 9.1RC (links below) or upgrade an existing project, both scenarios can provide valuable feedback.

If you find things in the RC that are not working, we’d be grateful for feedback on the Github issue tracker. You’re welcome to add comments to the features and fixes listed under 9.1 release or submit new bug reports (click New Issue and select Bug Report), please prefix the issue with 9.1RC:.

Umbraco 9.1 RC Github Issue 1267X641

As mentioned previously, the RC is feature complete, so we’re not going to add additional features but will, of course, fix bugs that prevent a stable release.

How to get your hands on the Umbraco 9.1RC

If you’re upgrading an existing project you can upgrade the Umbraco.CMS NuGet package. Remember to include prereleases in Visual studio, Rider or via NuGet CLI/Package Manager Console.

If you’re want to create new projects based on the release candidate using .NET CLI you need to install/update the Umbraco template first:

dotnet new -i Umbraco.Templates::9.1.0-rc

As always, installation and release notes can be found on Our:

When is the public release?

We’re aiming for a full public release on November 26th, 2021. This means Umbraco 9.1 will be available for upgrade on Umbraco Cloud and via Nuget. We need a couple of days to wrap up the release so the sooner we get your feedback the better 🙂

Big H5YR 🙌 to everyone who has contributed to Umbraco 9.1 and thanks to everyone willing to lend a hand in testing it out. It means the world to get it validated by the users.

Bug reports are best handled on the issue tracker and as always, we welcome you to submit product feedback and questions on

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