Timo Stollenwerk and Victor Fernandez de Alba: Volto: Past, Present and Future

published Dec 07, 2020

Talk at Plone Conference 2020

Most important milestone for Volto this year: we went from a small number of people to a critical mass of developers who work on Volto.

Plone has evolved from a product to a contract. Implementations may change, but values do not. Tiberiu Ichim: "Through the freedom that they provide,Volto blocks are a foundation for innovation that enables Plone to step in line with the latest state of the art for web development."

Volto is not only UI and UX for Plone, but it is a framework. We have design principles, like approachability, do not overengineer things, frontend and backend are meant to be decoupled, use semantic versioning.

Where are we in Volto today? 203 releases, 58 contributors, closed 1253 pull requests, 3024 commits. In which areas is Plone 6 better than Plone 5 today? Blocks engine, authoring experience, we have a schema and layout editor, the listing block, direct access to the full JavaScript and React ecosystem, performance. Bonus: Volto still works with Plone 4 as API backend. So if a customer is not ready to jump to Plone 5 or 6, you can give them a new UI on top of Plone 4. Every last Friday of the month we have the Volto Early Adopters Meeting. It is open for everyone interested.

We call Volto 4.0.0, from March 2020, the maturity release. And in nine months we went to Volto 10. We have huge improvements in extensibility. A new generator based on Yeoman will replace create-volto-app.

  • There is a new add-on architecture, using the mrs.developer tool.
  • API Block Transforms are great. You can serialize and deserialize input and output. We use this for example to handle resolveuid links.
  • Lazy loading
  • You can force a layout in the blocks editor, so Editors have to stick to this layout.
  • You can copy and paste blocks now, even on a different page in a different window.
  • Listing blocks: we talk about adding support for variations, removal of the listing container object from the results.


  • We want to bring back slots in Volto, a mix between viewlets and portlets, evolution of the Plone and Mosaic tiles concept.
  • Adoption of the Slate editor.
  • Albert Casado worked in UI improvements for us.