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Practical Guide Upgrade J2.x to J3.x

From Joomla 2.5 to Joomla 3.x is NOT an UPGRADE but a (mini) MIGRATION!

 This is a Practical Guide for upgrade/mini-migrate an existing Joomla 2.5 site to Joomla 3.x for those who want to (mini-migrate) to Joomla 3.x with it's exciting new features!

The guide is a basic guideline. If you require help please purchase tickets?

Before doing anything:


(use Akeebabackup or similar for that! but whatever you use: BACKUP!)


Step 1: Check that your server supports the requirements

You have to clarify that your hosting environment is suitable to host Joomla 3.x. The technical requirements are outlined clearly on Joomla.org:

Requirements for Joomla 3.x

Software Recommended Minimum More information
PHP (Magic Quotes GPC off) 5.3.1 + 5.3.1 + http://www.php.net
Supported Databases:
MySQL (InnoDB support required) 5.1 + 5.1 + http://www.mysql.com
MSSQL 10.50.1600.1+ 10.50.1600.1+ http://www.microsoft.com/sql
PostgreSQL 8.3.18 + 8.3.18 + http://www.postgresql.org/

Any good host is able to run Joomla 3.x !
Nothing is special in the requirements! In case your host cannot provide the correct environment to support Joomla 3.x:  CHANGE HOST

So assuming all is in the clear with the requirements you go to the next step!

Step 2: Check all extensions compatibility with Joomla 3.x!

Once again (and make a note of what you are doing on a piece of paper so you will remember!) before doing anything yet go and check all extensions (templates/components/plugin/modules) and make sure that any of these extensions are Joomla 3.x compatible. For sure when you have installed a Joomla 2.5 template you will need to change this with a Joomla 3.x compatible template. In general you can see in the Joomla Extension Directory pretty clear that an extension is compatible. (note: sometimes extension developers do not update their account on JED so double check on their website I suggest?)

mijo30Just look at this example image to understand what it means: If it shows, as per this example of Mijoshop, you can be assured that the extension is Joomla 3.x compatible an is available!

If it only shows the 2.5-icon rest assured the extension is not (yet) available for Joomla 3.x! This means that you have to wait or have to find an extension that IS available for Joomla 3.x...

(In this example you would for instance find out that your Virtuemart extension is only 2.5 compatible so you could to change to Mijoshop which as shown is 3.x compatible (or any other compatible 3.x shopping cart extension!) ) Did you know that we can migrate Virtuemart very easy to Mijoshop?

This is what you will have to do with all your extensions! Make an inventory what is and what is NOT compatible with Joomla 3.x!

When you have written down this we go to Step 3!

Step 3: Update all extensions compatibility with Joomla 3.x

This is a simple step! You just download and update all your extensions (not Joomla yet!)  you have found to be compatible with Joomla 3.0 <not yet your template (!)> Only upgrade extensions that show compatibility with Joomla 1.5/2.5/3/x or 2.5/3.x!


We go to the next step!

Step 4: Delete all extensions that are NOT compatible with Joomla 3.x!

Go to your admin panel and be very careful...Do not do this when your are tired, too much coffee, do not feel good etc... You should be fresh and have a clear mind!!!!

Go to Manage Extensions > and choose "components" : delete those components that are not compatible with Joomla 3.x and do the same for successively "modules" and "plugins" Please be careful and do not delete things you have not changed. Do not delete any Joomla stuff for sure! Do NOT delete what you before in Step 3 have upgraded
Be Careful & Precise!

Disable Remember-me System Plugin (Essential!)

Now when you are done we are going to get your site to Joomla 3.x !

Step 5: Update Joomla 2.5 to Joomla 3.x!

So go to the component "Joomla Update" and select the global "options" icon (top right in your screen). Change the settings from Long Term Release (LTS) to STS (Short Term Support) and save. Now go back to Joomla update and you will see that the 3.x version is available!!!! Click UPDATE and within seconds your site will be on Joomla 3.x

So we are going to finish up now!

Step 6: Update remaining extensions

So Now it is the moment to upload your Joomla 3.x template, configure it. Also do that for extensions you have replaced since they had no Joomla 3.x version (refer to Step 2)


psssst: download it to your PC and do not leave it on your server....guess what is happening when your server's hard-disk crashes? Ouch...;-)  )

Need our help? See these pages!

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