I upgraded this website to Orchard 1.6 today. I've been so busy with client websites that I finally snuck some time over the weekend to upgrade my own website to Orchard CMS 1.6. Since I have been upgrading my website with each and every Orchard release it was a piece of cake!
Truth be told, I did a practice upgrade of my website to Orchard 1.6 when it first came out. I like to practice on my own website(s) before doing client website upgrades. I never deployed it, however, as I figured we would see a maintenance release soon after and I didn't want to do the upgrade twice very quickly. Turns out that maintenance release never happened, and I became so busy doing client upgrades that I now just got around to officially upgrading this website to Orchard CMS 1.6.
If you have been upgrading your Orchard Website regularly, upgrading your website from Orchard 1.5 to Orchard 1.6 is simple. It is those of you who are still on earlier releases of Orchard that have your work cut out for you. I've been doing quite a few upgrades for clients that are still on Orchard 1.2 and 1.3, and these website upgrades, although not difficult, can be a bit more time consuming depending on the state of your custom modules, etc. Given the changes in routing and navigation, there are still a fair number of Orchard Modules in the Orchard Gallery that are not compatible with newer versions of Orchard. I fix these incompatabilities for my clients, but this takes additional time during the upgrade.
Some clients have upgraded their VPS or hosted server to .NET Framework 4.5 only to find out Orchard 1.3 and earlier releases have problems. I did a number of Orchard 1.6 upgrades for those clients and I am happy to report they are all up and running! I've found in my real-world, day-to-day experience upgrading Orchard Websites that it is far better to upgrade with each release of Orchard. I recommend waiting for a maintenance release if there are big changes to Orchard, but indeed, I would upgrade regularly to avoid complications with upgrades later.
As I have mentioned probably way too often, Orchard 1.6 runs on ASP.NET MVC 4 and NHibernate 3.3 and supports ASP.NET Web API. If your shared hosting service or VPS is running .NET Framework 4.5, I recommend running Orchard CMS 1.6. I am still on .NET Framework 4.0 and running Orchard CMS 1.6 on ASP.NET MVC 4 successfully. Once I get all my Orchard Websites upgraded to Orchard 1.6 I will probably upgrade my web server to .NET Framework 4.5.
If you're thinking about Orchard 1.6, here are a couple of useful blog posts:
I wish you a great holiday and a happy and healthy 2013!