PHP 5.3.0 Release Candidate
The PHP developers have announced the availability of the first release candidate for version 5.3 of PHP (5.3.0RC1), the open source scripting language. The developers are asking users to thoroughly test the release in a non-production environment and report any problems which they experience. They have pointed out that they are aware of some issues surrounding float/integer handling in some cases, as well as a crash bug in the the Netscape Server Application Programming Interface (NSAPI), all of which will be fixed in the second release candidate.
PHP 5.3 contains several fundamental extensions as well as a number of new features. The key features that are highlighted in the annoucement are support for namespaces, late static binding, lambda functions and closures classes, NOWDOC syntax, GOTO statements and optional garbage collection for cyclic references.
The 5.3 release candidate also drops several extensions and unifies usage of internal APIs, so users should be aware of possible backward compatibility breaks. A full list of changes can be found in the CVS NEWS file. A PHP 5.3 guide to the upgrades is also available.