Backwards Compatibility

OpenZeppelin Contracts uses semantic versioning to communicate backwards compatibility of its API and storage layout. Patch and minor updates will generally be backwards compatible, with rare exceptions as detailed below. Major updates should be assumed incompatible with previous releases. On this page, we provide details about these guarantees.

Bear in mind that while releasing versions under v1.0.0, we treat minors as majors and patches as minors, in accordance with semantic versioning. This means that v0.7.1 could be adding features to v0.7.0, while v0.8.0 would be considered a breaking release.


In backwards compatible releases, all changes should be either additions or modifications to internal implementation details. Most code should continue to compile and behave as expected. The exceptions to this rule are listed below.


Infrequently, a patch or minor update will remove or change an API in a breaking way but only if the previous API is considered insecure. These breaking changes will be noted in the changelog and release notes, and published along with a security advisory.


The specific error format and data that is included with reverts should not be assumed stable unless otherwise specified.

Major releases

Major releases should be assumed incompatible. Nevertheless, the external interfaces of contracts will remain compatible if they are standardized, or if the maintainers judge that changing them would cause significant strain on the ecosystem.

An important aspect that major releases may break is "upgrade compatibility", in particular storage layout compatibility. It will never be safe for a live contract to upgrade from one major release to another.

Storage layout

Patch updates will always preserve storage layout compatibility, and after v1.0.0 minors will too. This means that a live contract can be upgraded from one minor to another without corrupting the storage layout. In some cases it may be necessary to initialize new state variables when upgrading, although we expect this to be infrequent.

Cairo version

The minimum Cairo version required to compile the contracts will remain unchanged for patch updates, but it may change for minors.