Some great ideas have been sketched out in Features 8.x, both in the code and in the issues. The Features module served a key role through the D7 cycle. But the more work is done, the less seems specific to the Features problem space. That is, most of the needed configuration handling not already handled in core is generic to any module building, and not specific to a "feature" (a "collection of Drupal entities which taken together satisfy a certain use-case"). This conclusion appears to apply to most or all of what currently is in the Features 8.x code.

Meanwhile, relevant work has emerged elsewhere in configuration management modules. Together, this work is beginning to cover off much of what might have been done in a D8 Features module:

  • Handle export and update of specific configuration entities. The Configuration Development module is a great start and is gaining some profile in this space.
  • Display and revert configuration overrides. The Configuration Update Manager project is well along.
  • Package configuration into bundles satisfying a given use case. Configuration Packager is a fresh start on this problem. Compared to Features, Configuration Packager takes a step back to consider the site as a whole and to assist with authoring not individual configuration modules but an integrated set of packages.

Whatever's done towards features-like handling, it seems clear that it shouldn't replace but should instead closely integrate with more generic solutions. For this purpose, the "Features" namespace may be more confusing than helpful.

Proposed resolution

Before investing a lot more time in development, it's probably worth asking anew: is Features needed for Drupal 8? Would it make sense to focus instead on merging work into the above configuration handling modules?

Remaining tasks


nedjo’s picture

On a personal note: Configuration Packager is at an early stage of development with a ton of work - both conceptual and coding - to do and I'd strongly welcome collaboration and contributions. One current focus is to move all generic methods from Configuration Packager into Configuration Development.

nedjo’s picture

Issue summary: View changes