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PHP 7 Hosting to Turbocharge Your Cloud Based Application

Updated on  May 14, 2018

5 Min Read
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Consistent performance, optimal growth, and persistence—the three most important traits that drive Cloudways to success. We have always been at the forefront of listening to our customers and working on their feedback. Our customers are the most important asset and we cherish the feedback we receive from them. Yes, it takes us a bit of time to act on certain feedbacks, but that is the part and parcel of how work is done.



Recently, Cloudways successfully migrated its platform to the ultra-fast Debian 8 OS. After this development, we had our eyes set on introducing PHP 7 on our Cloud Platform. Yes, we have been a little late to the party; however, it was for the better of our customers. Ever since PHP 7 was introduced back in December 2015, our engineers had started testing the most used programming language for stability and functional optimization on the Platform. Work for implementing PHP 7 on one of the most stable Cloud Platform started soon after the announcement of PHP 7. Now, after months of repeated trials and errors, we are proud to announce that Cloudways has integrated the best PHP releases of all time: PHP 7.

What is PHP 7?

PHP 7 is a branch of PHP that was originally named PHPng (PHP next generation). It aims to optimize PHP performance by reshaping the Zend Engine while retaining near-perfect language compatibility of the previous PHP versions. Some of the initial benchmarks showed an almost 100% increase in performance. The new version of PHP has some very new features that include:

  • Return type declarations for functions which complement the existing parameter type declarations
  • Support for the scalar types (such as integer, float, string, and boolean) in parameter and return type declarations
  • Implementation of spaceship operator which is used for comparing two expressions and is performed according to PHP’s usual type comparison rules

These along with many other features which you can find here are also a part of PHP 7.


Soon after its release, engineers at Cloudways got down to working with PHP 7 before making live on the Platform. Applications were tested and benchmarks were created for all the applications. The results of the benchmarks were overwhelming to say the least. Some of the tested benchmarks are listed below:

  1. WordPress

Wordpress Php 7 Benchmarks

WordPress 4.4.2 on PHP 7 (with cache activated) is giving a response time of 4ms with 250 concurrent visitors as compared to 1.2sec on PHP5.5. That is lightning fast!

      2. Drupal

Drupal on Php 7

Drupal 7 on PHP 7 (with caching) has a response time of 3ms with 250 concurrent visitors. That is an average hit rate of 125/second.

      3. Laravel

Laravel Php 7

Laravel Framework on PHP 7 has a response time of 541ms as compared to a response time of 992ms on PHP 5.6.

     4. PHP Stack

Php Stack with Php 7

PHP Stack on Cloudways will benefit the most from PHP 7. It took a response time of 346ms on PHP 7.

php hosting signup

Are any issues expected?

PHP 7 was the most awaited release of the PHP language. Developers had been working for a decade on making PHP 7 a viable product. Likewise, the engineers at Cloudways have worked hard to make sure that PHP 7 gets implemented inside the console only when it is completely tested and stable enough to be used.

PHP is one of the fastest programming languages to work with. Now, with the release of PHP7, it is also one of the best programming languages. Developers have made the right changes and tweaks to make sure that this release helps start a new era for PHP. PHP7 can easily be called the developer’s paradise as it is twice as fast as compared to PHP 5.6 and has a lot of new features and improvements from the previous versions.

Engineers at Cloudways have worked hard to make sure that the default installations of some of the most used applications on our managed cloud hosting platform performs well without any known issues. However, since PHP 7 is the biggest shift in the PHP technology since the language was upgraded to 5.3, issues are expected to pop up. If you find any known issues related to any of the applications, then feel free to let us know in the comments section below.

I Have a PHP Server on Cloudways. Should I Upgrade?

First thing first, do not play with your production (aka “live”) websites. Like any new version, PHP 7 comes with its share of compatibility requirements. While we have taken a lot of care that everything goes smoothly, one can never be sure enough. Therefore, create a testing PHP 7 server. It might cost a little extra, but it is better than having a broken website.

(If you are eager to test it on your current server, then download copies of your website before upgrading.)

So, if you are an existing user of Cloudways and want to upgrade your server to PHP 7, then make sure your core apps are compatible with this version. This Knowledge Base Entry informs you about all the supported versions of Core Apps for PHP 7 servers.

Once you have confirmed that your apps won’t break if they are deployed on PHP 7, then read this Knowledge Base Entry to know the proper way of doing an upgrade.

Although, downgrading to an earlier PHP version from PHP 7 is also available.

Why PHP 7 On Cloudways?

Working with all these improvements, developers would need time and effort. This is where Cloudways comes in. With Cloudways on your side, you can easily focus on developing viable products and taking less worries related to the server side. Cloudways keeps the problem that developers face in mind and provides them a swift way to manage PHP 7 on cloud. You can start developing great applications on PHP 7 within minutes of becoming a part of Cloudways Managed Cloud Hosting. So what are you waiting for? Launch your PHP 7 hosting server on our Managed Cloud Platform and test it out. We would love to hear the feedback from our users!


Share your opinion in the comment section. COMMENT NOW

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About The Author

Taha Zafar

Taha Zafar is a Digital Content Producer at Cloudways. He is an engineer and likes to follow the latest trends in technology, with concentration on mobile technology and open source. Along with being a passionate content developer, Taha loves playing digital games like World of Warcraft and DOTA 2.

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  • Beppe

    Hi. I get 500 internal server error with woocommerce.

    • Hi Beppe,

      You need to make sure if all the plugins and the theme you are using is compatible with PHP 7 before moving live site to new PHP version.

      I would recommend that you first test your site on a new server on PHP 7 and then make it live.

      You can contact support and they will check your account and let you know the process of upgrading.

  • Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh yeah baby!!!!! #BeenWaiting 🙂

    • Taha


  • Yu-Cheng Wang

    This is great! Thank you Cloudways!

  • Ryan Leacock

    Can you run php7 with redis cache?

    • Hi Ryan!

      Yes, it is working with PHP 7. If you find any problems using it, feel free to contact our Live Chat support!

  • While I’m glad to finally have the ability to switch to PHP 7, it’s very frustrating and time-consuming to have to clone every application in order to make that happen. That means new IP addresses, new FTP user accounts, new Firewall IP Whitelisting, SSL certificate setup, reconfiguring the SMTP mail add-on…and of course, DNS propagation time. What a hassle!!

    I wish you could have developed an auto-migration tool to *move* a site/server rather than clone it, keeping the abovementioned settings intact.

    • cloudways

      Hi Andrew,

      Currently the best practice would be to deploy a new server and clone the websites you want on PHP 7 to the new server staging sites. This certainly requires to reconfigure the settings you stated. But it is a safe approach.

      You can submit your feedback and ideas about automating such process to: and we will have a look at it.

      Thanks 🙂

        • Tevya Washburn

          Thanks for doing this @eatingrules:disqus. I know I’m late to the conversation, but we host as many as 18 sites on an individual server, including all the stuff you mention. This is going to be a huge hassle and pain for us, if we have to go this route on all 6 of our servers. So I voted and commented, suggesting that maybe they could even offer an “Upgrade to Debian 8” option. I’m no Linux expert but found several articles on the upgrade process. So it is possible. Perhaps we’d have to update to PHP 5.6 (if not already there) first, and perhaps it would take the server down for half an hour or hour. But if we could schedule it or click the button to start, I’d take the scheduled downtime over the hassle of moving to a new server any day. That way we’d get to Debian 8 (including the PHP 7 option), without all the hassle of dealing with the items you describe.

          I feel like it would be in your best interest to offer this @cloudways:disqus, 1. as a way to take care of us customers who have been with you since before you had Debian 8/PHP 7 ready to go, and 2. as a way to be able to eventually get everyone upgraded to Debian 8, so you’re not stuck with some few servers on an old OS, because the upgrade is too painful.

  • I’ve upgraded several sites to PHP 7 now (both with Cloudways and elsewhere) and each time I’ve encountered an output buffer error with W3 Total Cache. It’s an easy fix, thankfully… just removing an “&” from one of the files. Linking to a solution here in case anyone else runs into this issue.

    • cloudways

      Thanks for taking the time to report the fix 🙂

  • Jonathan Blakoe


    I cannot see the PHP7 option in my cloud console ? Just PHP5.4, 5.5 and 5.6 ?

    • Hi

      Since your server is running Debian 7 you won’t be seeing PHP 7 on your Cloud Console. PHP 7 is only available with Debian 8 which was launched on Feb 9. To get PHP 7 on your console you need to create a new server or clone your app on a new server which will comes with debian 8 and PHP 7. On new server move your app to stagging and test it with PHP 7.

    • I am not seeing Php7 also I am on Apache/Nginx

      • Hi

        First go to the server management tab and under it go to Server setting and Packages and there click on Packages tab there you will find PHP click on the pen to edit and from drop down select PHP 7 and save it. You will be updated to PHP 7.

        Notice: You will only see PHP 7 if you have created your server after Feb 10,2016

        • Ethan

          I’m not seeing PHP 7 option too, only PHP 5.4, 5.5 and 5.6 version :'(

          My server is created from 2015.11.21

          • Once you are in Debian 8 you have got only 2 PHP versions 5.6 and 7