Penpot 2.0 broke all of our designs

The new update has made all of our existing designs unworkable. I can no longer delete elements, they only hide. I can’t move anything around in the element tree. Many of our text elements are never visible like they are behind another element and can’t come forward. Dragging components onto the design surface is not at all performant and the component doesn’t land in the location that I dragged it to. And I can’t detach component instances. My guess is that there are a lot more issues than what I listed here. Am I missing some kind of migration step or did months of my team’s work just get destroyed?

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Hi @Jacob,

I’m so sorry you had such an experience after the last release.

There are some changes that might be behind some of the inconveniences you have described. Some are breaking changes that fix things in the long term for Penpot but might change files that have been made in certain ways, and some imply workflow changes that could not be immediately understood. I’ll list here the most probable ones:

  • Change default z ordering on layers in flex layout. I’m quoting here the dev diaries: “The previous behavior was inconsistent with how HTML works and we changed it to be more consistent. Previous layers that overlapped could be hidden, the fastest way to fix this is changing the z-index property but a better way is to change the order of your layers”. This might be the reason why some elements are no longer visible. This can happen if there are layers used as backgrounds inside flex layouts. In this case, we strongly recommend setting the background color fill directly in the layer flex layout layer, to make it “agnostic” from the flex flow.
  • Main components cannot be detached from themselves. If you can not detach a component, make sure that you are trying to detach a component copy and not a main. Main components in the design viewport/area are a new thing that comes with Penpot 2.0. If you need a detached version of a main component you could always create a copy and detach it.
  • Layers inside component copies can not change their position. This is a new restriction that will help to maintain the synchronization of the component copies avoiding tons of conflicts that happened with the previous model. This behavior is the most common one in similar component systems. If you feel that you need to reposition elements inside the copy of a component, this should probably better be managed with a new version of this component. In this case, we recommend grouping them in the assets panel so they can be easily swapped.

However, despite the understandable inconveniences that these changes might have caused, none of these changes should be a show-stopper to keep working on any existing file. There is always a chance that there is a deeper error that might have broken the file in any way. We are more than happy to clarify the situation and help fix whatever is needed, including rolling back the changes as an option. For that, we would need to ask you for some details. If you’d be so kind as to write us to we would be able to handle the issue internally.

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Same here. This wasn’t the best migration solution from penpot. I’m glad i have only a few tiny projects on penpot, otherwise, it would be a disaster. Already feel anxious about future penpot upgrades.

I hope in the future the updates will be approached in a better way.

Probably old files should remain as a legacy with reduced functionality. And be migrated only with the user’s intent in a semi-manual manner. This is a real pain if your projects break one day.