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Introduction to Joomla! : The award winning CMS

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In this article we are going to introduce joomla! to the beginners and try to highlight some core features, goodies & detail overview  about Joomla!

What is Joomla?

Joomla! is an award-winning content management system (CMS), which helps to build Web sites, powerful online applications & contents of the website without having much programming or technical knowledge. Joomla is built on top of  the free and open source scripting language PHP. It is the 2nd most popular web site development software after WordPress. You can create and extend to any kind of website you want to built on top of Joomla. It  is an open source solution that is freely available to everyone.

What’s a content management system (CMS)?

A content management system is a software or set of software that keeps track of every piece of content on your Web site, Contents can be simple text, photos, music, video, documents, or just about anything you can think of. A major advantage of using a CMS is that it requires almost no technical skill or knowledge to manage a website. Since the CMS manages all your content of website it makes your life easy to manage your website and contents.

History of Joomla! CMS

Joomla was the result of a fork of Mambo on August 17, 2005. Joomla developers created a website called OpenSourceMatters.org (OSM) to distribute information to users, developers, web designers and the community in general. Project leader Andrew Eddie wrote a letter that appeared on the announcements section of the public forum at mamboserver.com. A little more than one thousand people had joined OpenSourceMatters.org within a day, most posting words of encouragement and support.
On August 18, Andrew Eddie called for community input on suggested names for the project. The core team eventually chose a name that was not on the list of suggested names provided by the community. On September 22, the new name, “Joomla!,” was announced. It is the anglicised spelling of the Swahili word jumla meaning “all together” or “as a whole ” which also has a similar meaning in at least Arabic and Urdu.

Joomla 1.0 was released on September 22, 2005 as a re-branded release of Mambo 4.5.2.3 that combined other bug and moderate-level security fixes.

Joomla won the Packt Publishing Open Source Content Management System Award in 2006, 2007, and 2011.

Real world implementation of Joomla! CMS

Joomla is used all over the world to power Web sites of all shapes and sizes. For example:

  • Corporate Web sites or portals
  • Corporate intranets and extranets
  • Online magazines, newspapers, and publications
  • E-commerce and online reservations
  • Government applications
  • Small business Web sites
  • Non-profit and organizational Web sites
  • Community-based portals
  • School and church Web sites
  • Personal or family homepages
  • Social Networks
  • Personal & Social blogging networks

Why Should use Joomla?

  1. Ease of use
  2. Free & Open Source
  3. Highly Secured
  4. Change look of website easily with free & paid templetes
  5. Hassle free content management
  6. Extend the core with thousands of free & paid extensions
  7. Built on top of modern MVC framework
  8. Hosting solution is available & cheaper
  9. Search Engine Friendly
  10. Modern clean UI
  11. Multilingual

Joomla! Release Cycle

Joomla 1.5 was 1st LTS version. Then 1.6, 1.7 & 2.5 LTS was released. From version 3.0 joomla is following new release cycle with 3 short term releases with 6 month support and then the final LTS version. From version 3.x joomla is following 3.0, 3.1, 3.2 and the LTS 3.5 type release cycle so that the extension developers get more time to test, adopt and upgrade to latest version & site builders get longer supports and time to upgrade.

Installing Joomla in localhost

Joomla is very much easy to install in localhost as well as in live server. In this part the step by step installation process of joomla 3.x.x will be shown for the beginers. For doing so you will need

  • Local sever like xampp/wamp
  • Latest stable version of Joomla 3.x.x
  • A browser like Firefox/Chrome

Now lets start the joomla 3.x.x installation process

  • 1st of all download and install xampp/wamp/uwamp in any drive of your PC.
  • Download latest stable stable version of Joomla 3.x.x from joomla.org
  • Now extract the zip folder, Copy The unzipped folder and paste it inside the htdocs directory of xampp or www directory of wamp/uwamp and rename it as joomla/joom or anything you want.

Joomla Installation

  •  Now start xampp/wamp/uwamp and start apache and mysql.

Joomla Installation with Wamp/xampp

  • Now from your browser run http://localhost/joom and you will get the joomla web installer. This is the 1st step of the installation process and you have to give your site name, username, password and after filling all required field click the next button

Joomla Installation Settings

  • The 2nd step is all about Database configuration. Here you have to choose “mysqli” for Database Type,  “root” as Username and “localhost” as the Host name. You can keep the default table prefix or create your own but keep in mind you have to give “_” [UnderScore] sign after the table prefix. In the Database name section you have to give the name of database you have created for the installation. For this you will have to create the database 1st.

Joomla 3.x Database Settings

  •   Now we have to create a database for our installation. To do so hit http://localhost/phpmyadmin/ from your browser. Here the page PHPMyAdmin will be found and we will create a database named “joom” like below.

Joomla 3.x Database

  • After clicking the create button you will see the new DB named joom in the sidebar on the left.

Joomla 3.x Database with PHPMyAdmin

  • Now fill the DB name and click next.
  • Here you will get finalization and overview section. You will get 6 option about installing sample data. It is recommended for the beginners to install any one of sample data for learning purpose. I’m choosing Brochure sample data. Now click install and wait for a while

Joomla 3 Final Installation

  • You will get greetings massage about joomla installation. Now before proceed you must have to click to REMOVE INSTALLATION FOLDER.

Joomla 3 Installation Final

  • Now click on SITE button to view the front-end of your installation and administrator to access the joomla site backend.

This is all done for now. Browse the front end and backend to explore more about joomla!

Hope you have enjoyed the article. In the upcoming articles about joomla I will try to highlight about joomla backend and templete development.

Open source technology enthusiast & passionate programmer. PHP based Web developer. Fan boy of twitter Bootstrap, jQuery, Backbone.js, Joomla, PyroCMS & Laravel PHP framework. Also interested in Python, Django, C++, C#, Drupal, OpenCart, WordPress, Linux & Android. Love to play with new technologies.
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