Web sites and other programs placed on the silk hosting service may require periodic updates to continue working as the underlying software changes. The developers of each programming language publish their own support timeline, and every few years the underlying silk service hosts are replaced with a newer operating system along with other improvements.

Most software uses one of the following support models:

  • Only the most recent version is supported, but upgrades should generally be safe for existing code.
  • The most recent three versions (or the most recent three versions labeled for long-term support) receive updates. New versions and retirement of old versions follow a predictable timetable. Backward compatibility in new versions varies. For example, upgrades are usually safe with Node.js; with PHP, each version introduces warnings that become errors in the following release.

End-of-life and default versions

Enterprise Technology Services attempts to provide information well in advance of changes that may break your site. For software whose developers do not offer a promise of long-term backward compatibility, ETS publishes a lifecycle timetable so you can plan for periodic updates.

When software reaches its development end-of-life, it will be removed from the silk hosting service. If possible, this is done at the end of the current semester. When there are multiple supported versions, the default version offered on silk will usually then be bumped up to the following release.


To avoid potential problems when a software's default version is changed, configure your site ahead of time to use a specific version of that software.

Support timetables


The dates shared are the most recently known end-of-life dates published by software developers and may be changed over time.

Current-version-only languages

New releases of Go, Perl, R, and Rust do not usually require changes to your code to continue functioning, though they may require changes if you wish to use new features. These languages always have a recent version available on silk that may be updated as required.


Newer releases of OpenJDK will be available on the upcoming silkv3 service.

Version Sunset Date
1.8 (IBM, default) May 2026
11 (OpenJDK) Octoboer 2024


The Node.js Releases page shows the official support timeline for each release of Node.js. The silk hosting service offers LTS (long time support) releases as they are available. Node.js 18 and 20 will be available on the upcoming silkv3 service.

Version Sunset Date
16.x (default) September 11, 20231


The table below summarizes current releases from the PHP Supported Versions page available on silk. End-of-life releases are removed from silk at the end of fall semester exams.

Version Sunset Date
8.0 November 26, 2023
8.1 (default) November 25, 2024
8.2 December 8, 2025


The Status of Python Versions page in the Python Developer's Guide describes the official support matrix for each version. The information below adapts that to usage on the silk hosting service. Newer releases will become available on the upcoming silkv3 service.

Version Sunset Date
3.8 (default) October 2024
3.10 October 2026


The table below summarizes end of life dates for releases on silk as listed on the Ruby Maintenance Branches page. Newer versions of Ruby will become available on the upcoming silkv3 service.

Version Sunset Date
3.0 (default) March 31, 2024

  1. The Node.js development team shifted this date earlier than originally announced to coincide with the end-of-life of related software.