Joomla vs Wordpress

12 April 2015, 12:00 am
Published in Blog

We’ve had many clients ask us this – “Which is better for my company Joomla vs WordPress?” On your journey to find the best Content Management System for your company’s website you’ll see these two options at the top of the list. But how do you know which CMS is going to be the right choice for your current needs and will this system allow for easy growth?

Web design is our expertise! So we’ve decided to run a test by comparison of these two major Content Management Systems to help you visually see the difference.

 

Joomla: Pros and Cons

Joomla is an open-source content management software forked from Mambo. It is one of the most popular CMS solutions in the world and boasts over 30m downloads to date. Joomla powers such noteworthy sites as Cloud.com, Linux.com, etc.

Advantages of Joomla

  • User-Friendly: Joomla isn’t WordPress, but it’s still relatively easy to use. Those new to publishing will find its UI polished, flexible and powerful, although there is still a slight learning curve involved in figuring everything out.
  • Strong Developer Community: Like WordPress, Joomla too has a strong developer community. The plugin library (called ‘extensions’ in Joomla) is large with a ton of free to use, open source plugins.
  • Extension Variability: Joomla extensions are divided into five categories – components, plugins, templates, modules and languages. Each of these differs in function, power and capability. Components, for example, work as ‘mini-apps’ that can change the Joomla installation altogether. Modules, on the other hand, add minor capabilities like dynamic content, RSS feeds, and search function to a web page.
  • Strong Content Management Capabilities: Unlike WordPress, Joomla was originally designed as an enterprise-grade CMS. This makes it far more capable at handling a large volume of articles than WordPress.

Disadvantages of Joomla

  • Some Learning Involved: You can’t jump right into a Joomla installation and start hammering out new posts if you’re not familiar with the software. The learning curve isn’t steep, but it can be enough to intimidate casual users.
  • Lacks SEO Capabilities: Making WordPress SEO friendly is as easy as installing a free plugin. With Joomla, you’ll need a ton of work to get to the same level of search engine friendliness. Unless you have the budget to hire a SEO expert, you might want to look at alternative solutions.
  • Limited ACL Support: ACL (Access Control List) refers to a list of permissions that can be granted to specific users for specific pages. ACL is a vital component of any enterprise-grade CMS solution. Joomla started supporting ACL only after version 1.6. ACL support is still limited in the stable v2.5.1 release, making it unsuitable for enterprise customers.

 

WordPress: Pros and Cons

New York Times, CNN, Forbes and Reuters – the list of WordPress.com clients reads like publishing dream-team. More than 68 million websites use WordPress, making it the world’s favorite blogging software. It is flexible enough to power fortune 500 company blogs as well as sporadically updated personal journals.

Below, we take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of using WordPress:

Advantages of WordPress

  • Multiple Authors: WordPress was built from the ground-up to accommodate multiple authors – a crucial feature for any serious publication.
  • Huge Plugin Library: WordPress’ is the poster-child of the open-source developer community, which has developed hundreds of thousands of plugins for it. There are few things WordPress can’t do with its extensive library of plugins.
  • User-Friendly: WordPress’ UI is easy to use and highly intuitive, even for first-time bloggers. You can drop a theme, add a few plugins, and start blogging within minutes. This course will teach you how to install and set up a WordPress blog .
  • Strong SEO Capabilities: With plugins like All in One SEO, you can start blogging straight away without worrying about on-page SEO.
  • Easy Customization: WordPress’ theming system is designed for easy-customization. Anyone with a little grasp of HTML and CSS can customize WordPress themes to fit his/her needs.
  • Flexibility: WordPress can be made to do virtually anything – run an e-commerce store, host a video site, serve as a portfolio or work as a company blog – thanks to plugins and customized themes.

Disadvantages of WordPress

  • Security: As the category leading software with millions of installations, WordPress is often the target of hackers. The software itself isn’t very secure out of the box and you will have to install third-party plugins to boost your WordPress installation’s security.
  • Incompatibility with Older Plugins: The WordPress team constantly releases new updates to fix security loopholes and patch problems. These updates are often incompatible with older plugins. If your site relies on older plugins, you may have to hold off on updating (which makes your site all the more susceptible to hack attacks).
  • Limited Design Options: Even though WordPress is infinitely customizable, most WordPress installations still look like WordPress installations. Although recent updates and improvements in plugins/themes have rectified this problem somewhat, WordPress is still hampered by limited design options.
  • Limited Content Management Capabilities: WordPress was originally designed as a blogging platform. This has affected its ability to handle large amounts of content. If you plan to publish hundreds of blog posts per week (not uncommon for large publishers), you may find the default WordPress backend a little underwhelming for such high content volume.

Conclusion

Even though WordPress and  Joomla are built on the same technology stack, they vary heavily in features and capabilities. Hopefully, the above information will help you choose a CMS that fits your requirements.

 

A lot of people use Joomla to manage and publish their websites. While Joomla is a good platform, it is definitely not for everyone. Maybe you are among those users who have decided that you want to switch from Joomla to WordPress. You have heard a lot of people talking about WordPress and it’s ease of use. You want to utilize the power of WordPress plugins and themes. Well if you want to migrate your Joomla site to WordPress, then you are in the right place. In this article, we will show you how to move your site from Joomla to WordPress.

 

Delete Existing Content

Before you can begin converting your Joomla content to WordPress, you need to delete everything from your WordPress account in order to make some room for the incoming Joomla information.

 

 

Before you delete your WordPress content, make sure it’s all backed up somewhere.

 


 

Installing Joomla to WordPress Migrator Software


Once you get rid of all your WordPress content, you’ll need to install a Plugin known as the Joomla to WordPress Migrator Software. Mind that it is compatible with WordPress only up to 3.3 (while the latest version now is 3.6).



Install the plugin and activate it before going on to the next step.

In most cases, this plugin works, but there have been a number of reports complaining about failed attempts to download and initialize the plugin in order to make the change from Joomla to WordPress.

 

After installing the plugin that will allow you to move your content, you need to configure your Joomla and WordPress database parameters.

Do some digging through your files to find Joomla's configuration.php and WordPress' wp-config.php.

Also, there's one more plugin for Joomla to WordPress migration - CMS2CMS Joomla to WP migration. It was recently added to WP official repository, but there have already been lots of downloads.

 

Add Content on the Same Server

Move your content to the same server. That means all of your WordPress information and Joomla information need to go to the same server.

Once you have all of your information on the same server, you’ll notice that you have two different logins.

When prompted by the migration software, you’ll need to enter a server user ID number.

If you don’t have your server user ID, you may be able to get it from your hosting company.

 

The following content items can be migrated from Joomla to WordPress with CMS2CMS

  • Articles
  • Pages
  • Images (as an option)
  • Categories
  • Tags
  • Users
  • Internal links
  • Comments

 

Features of Automated Migration

  • Easy - no need for coding skills to complete it.
  • Fast - 15 minutes on average, depending on the size of Joomla website.
  • Free Demo available - in order to see it in action.
  • Live chat support - you get instant answers to any questions, no need to search for support on forums.

 

Additional Migration Options

  • Opportunity to form internal URLs according to SEO URL structure on WordPress website.
  • 301 redirects from Joomla URLs to WordPress URLs
  • Clear WordPress data before migration
  • Passwords migration (available for Joomla 2.5.18 - 2.5.27)

 

Additional Supported Modules

  • Jcomments - migration of comments to WordPress directly
  • Joomla sh404SEF - migration of meta descriptions and keywords to WordPress SEO by Yoast
  • Phoca Gallery - migration of images and galleries to NextGen Gallery.

 

Note. This plugin installs connection bridge on WordPress website, which is necessary for data exchange between Joomla and WordPress websites. After activation, you’ll be redirected to CMS2CMS website in order to complete the migration.

 

Steps to Take before Migration

  1. Install WordPress and make sure that Joomla and WordPress websites are available online.
  2. Have Joomla website FTP access details at hand (host, username, password) - you use them to install connection bridge on Joomla website.
  3. Set up custom URL structure for WordPress (it should be set before the migration for internal links to work correctly, if you change them after migration, site navigation will be broken).
  4. Install WordPress plugins supported by CMS2CMS (if you want to migrate metadata or image galleries).

 

Tips

  • wp-config.php is located right in the root directory of your WordPress installation.
  • Joomla configuration.php resides in the main directory of your Joomla installation.
  • To migrate to WordPress ver. 3.5, various plug-ins are available online.

 

When setting up a new website there are a lot of factors to consider, like your design and domain name,

but the most important of all is choosing the right platform. There are a number of factors that need to

be taken into account, such as cost, time, quality, flexibility and control.

So don’t take it lightly. Joomla is an Award winning CMS (Content Management system) among various

CMS’s. Do you every thought, why it is so much famous? Why it is BEST?

1. Joomla Has More Than 6000 Extensions

What WordPress folk refer to as “plugins”, Joomla developers refer to as “extensions”.

The 12,000+ plugins available to WordPress users is way too much. It’s overkill. I mean, who needs to

rainbowify, unicornify or catify their site? There’s no need for all that junk. There’s no need to add even

more clutter to Joomla’s already beautiful templates.

2. Some of the Biggest and Most Respected Companies in the World Use Joomla

Pizza Hut, the UK Ministry of Defence, the Greek Government, the High Court of Australia and MTV in

Greece are just some of Joomla’s biggest fans. And did I mention that Leonardo Di Caprio uses Joomla?

Pretty cool, huh? But what you might not know is that McDonalds is also a convert. That is, McDonalds

in Bahrain. If you have a craving for McArabia Chicken or a McRoyale Burger, the local McDonalds

website has you covered. Joomla powers the restaurant’s website for the Arabian Peninsula, ensuring

information is easily on hand for budding burger flippers with stars in their eyes wanting to find out

more about the region’s Hamburger University.

3. The Admin Area Inspires Greatness

Just as Muhammad Ali was the greatest, so too is Joomla and its stunning and simple to use admin area.

Joomla’s endless lists of text that seem to go on and on and on, the multiple sets of navigation and the

fact is calls me a “Super User” like I’m some sort of web wunderkind who controls the interwebs from

the admin area that in no way at all looking bland and boring. I’m in love. Logging in conjures up images

of riding a unicorn over a sea of rainbows and joy balloons. Yes, I love the admin area. It doesn’t make

me want to smash my head on my keyboard at all.

4. Robust

Joomla is one of the faster CMS platforms ever in comparison of all the CMS. Joomla content loads very

much faster. If there are over 100k page views/day, every day then it handles fine without any problem

or any bug. Joomla have a power-full core features which makes it more faster.

5. Secure (No Direct Access)

Joomla provides such facility that user cannot access any directory by giving just a URL on address bar.

So all our data in Joomla are very secure and no one can access directly from the address bar.

6. User Roles & Groups

Joomla provides lots of user roles like Register user, author and many more. Joomla provides the facility

of the making a user groups. With using a user group functionality user can make different kind of user

groups and make their user filter via this user groups types available like Registered, Author, Editor,

Publisher etc.

7. Cost

As an open source CMS, Joomla is free to use which means that most of the customization works are

free or low cost. To set up the site you should install Joomla platform and select that very design theme

that fits your taste and technical requirements. You could find a great choice of Business & Finance

Joomla Templates with easy-to-edit and inexpensive Joomla templates showcased on the Business

category page:

8. Functionality

As soon as design is set, it’s high time to think about functionality of your website. Joomla comes with

several standard features as well as with extended capabilities. To make use of non-standard features

you need to find and enable the required extensions or plugins. One of the biggest advantages of this

platform is a great global community of users and developers that could always help you with advice,

support and provide access to new features for your Joomla-based website. These features (also called

applications, extensions or plug-ins) are mostly available for free, developed by Joomla community

members and for Joomla community members.

9. Time

Joomla platform has the shortest development cycle, as there is a great bunch of ready-made design

templates and easy-to-set plug-ins that help to save your time for the site development. You don’t have

to waste time with designers and programmers developing mock-ups and thoroughly thinking over

design concept and programming new features.

10. Control

This powerful platform is managed through the back-end and front end. Customizations of content,

design, structure and functionality don’t require high level of technical knowledge and skills. If you have

any questions or doubts you may use numerous tutorials developed by Joomla community members.

 

As you may observe, Joomla can boast of excellent characteristics by all factors that are crucial for small

business owners starting their business online. The above-mentioned factors are cost, time, quality,

flexibility, and control. It may be concluded that Joomla is a powerful CMS platform that’s not

accidentally popular all over the world having a huge community of fans, contributing to its

development. With the help of Joomla design templates and ready-made applications you could save

time and money building small business website. Having that support, it would be a great option as a

basis for your future profitable web projects.

Joomla Security Problems and how to avoid them

19 April 2015, 12:00 am
Published in Blog

Fix and cracked file and forget it - Once your site's been cracked, fixing the defaced file is not enough. Check your site's logs,change your old passwords, remove the entire directory and rebuild it from clean backups, and take all precautionary actions!

 

Lack of information when asking for help - If your site gets hacked / cracked, go to the Joomla forums, and before you start posting away like crazy, make sure you have all relevant information available, such as the version of Joomla you have installed, what version of 3rd party extensions you have installed. This information will help to identify what could have caused your hack, and how to fix and avoid it happening again.

 

Forgetting to keep your Joomla! site updated - after install your brand new beautiful Joomla!-powered site, keep yourself up to date with any stable releases, and update with each stable release. Most stable releases fix problems and vulnerabilites. Forgetting to upgrade will leave your site exposed toproblems. This also applies for any 3rd party extensions you install.



Install and forget - After install your brand new beautiful Joomla!-powered site, check it regularly making sure nothing has gone wrong. Lots of things can go wrong if you don't maintain all the components of your Joomla installations.

Having no development server - All upgrades and extension installations should be first tried on a development server, before being done on the live site. If something goes wrong on the development server, you can avoid creating the same problem on the server, and you'll make sure your live site stays clean.

 

Weak Passwords or Same passwords - Using the same username and password for your on-line bank account, Joomla! administrator account, Amazon account, Yahoo account, is another mistake you should avoid like the plague. Always use strong passwords which are different from those for your other accounts. Remember also to change the name of the admin account.



Skipping hardening (tweaking settings for security) of PHP and Joomla! settings - Forgetting or skipping the adjusting PHP and Joomla! settings for increased security is a huge no no. There are many small settings and tweaks you can do to make your PHP server and Joomla! more secure. 


 

Need any security help with Joomla ?

Please contact us for a free quote. 

 JoomlaKave

 

Social Media Integrating Plugins with Joomla CMS

22 April 2015, 12:00 am
Published in Blog

Social media begin so popular these days that everyone wants to integrate their official social media to their sites. The popular social medias are Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Yahoo, Instagram, VK, Github, Amazon, Meetup, etc. Social media integration involves pulling latest social media posts, page content into the site itself. Also it works the other way around where content from the site can also be pushed from site to the social media via different tools. Facebook Pages and Facebook Groups, Twitter Streams and LinkedIn Company Profiles are some of the often used contents. Facebook Open Graph tag and Twitter Card tags are used to manage the looks of all content shared from site.

 

If you are interested in social media integration, consider the following list of available plugins and choose which one fits best into your social media marketing strategy. There are things to keep in mind though, as you will want to choose extensions that suit your site. For example: if you have a hyper local site you may just pick the most popular platforms amongst you and your friends, but if your site is going to be international then you will need a wide variety of social media, as Facebook may not be as popular in Japan as it is amongst your friends.

Here are some popular tools and extensions in Joomla to integrate with social media:

Simple Social Network Authentication

One-click registration and login for 10 major social networks. Let your users access your site quickly and easily with no forms, passwords, and usernames to remember.

Ultimate Social Bookmarking Plugin

The Ultimate plugin is similar to AddThis but has a different look. Some consider the plugin a little more cluttered than the more basic plugins as it has up to 60 social platforms that can be accessed. This is great for those looking to cover all their bases with the throngs of social networking sites available.

Automatic Social Sharing Buttons

Add Facebook Comments, Facebook Likes/Shares, Google +1, Twitter Share, LinkedIn Share and Pinterest Pin buttons automatically to your content. Include or exclude any categories or articles.

Social Streams

Show the news feeds from Facebook Pages & Facebook Groups, Twitter feeds and LinkedIn Company Pages. Streams are fully customizable and can chose posts from multiple providers merged into one feed.

Facebook Page Stream

Smartly Stream Your Favorite Facebook Page Updates Inside Your Joomla Site. Simple & Fast A smart module to display Status and Share from Facebook page as stream. After Authentication, simply select the FB page from dropdown, select style and enjoy. Keep your visitors on your site while giving them all important updates from your FB page.

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/responsive-fb-page-stream-module 

Facebook Group Stream

Smartly Stream Your Favorite Facebook Group Page Updates Inside Your Joomla Site. Simple & Fast A smart module to display Feed Stream from any Public Facebook Group. After Authentication, simply select the FB page from dropdown, select style and enjoy. Keep your visitors on your site while giving them all important updates from your FB Group. 

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/item/117-facebook-group-feed-stream-responsive-joomla 

Facebook Profile Stream

Smartly Stream Your Favorite Facebook Page Updates Inside Your Joomla Site. Simple & Fast A smart module to display Status and Share from Facebook Profile as stream. After authentication, simply give your Facebook username, select style from built-in styles and layouts. Keep your visitors on your site while giving them all important updates from your FB profile.

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/responsive-fb-profile-stream-joomla-module   

Social Posting

Easily 'push' your content along with a custom comment and URL to Facebook Pages & Facebook Groups, LinkedIn Company Page or Twitter stream. Works with all extensions!

Twitter Module

While there are a wide variety of modules created just for Twitter, one of the  Twitter Timeline Module.

Twitter Timeline

Responsive & Realtime Twitter Timeline in Module Position, Smart and Easy. A module to display your Twitter updates of your twitter streams based on recently released widget features from Twitter. Simply give your Twitter widget ID, select style and enjoy.

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/item/53-twitter-timeline-widget-module-for-joomla 

Twitter Feed

Twitter Feed is a simple yet great Twitter module that allows you to configure how many tweets display on your Joomla site based on the Twitter search API. You can also display or hide certain tweets and filter the results with advanced search capabilities. You can also apply customized CSS styling to the extension.

3rd Party Profile Integration

Import user profile information including avatar and cover photo. Fully control your site's fields and what social network data should be imported into each one. Works with the User - Profile plugin, JomSocial, EasySocial, Community Builder, Kunena, K2, Virtuemart and more.

Facebook Invitations

Let your users invite their Facebook friends to your sites. Configure a customized 'welcome' page for recipients as well to woo them in.

Auto-Configuration Tool

Don't mess with Facebook App settings yourself; JFBConnect can configure your Facebook Application automatically and check for common mistakes and errors.

Multi-Lingual

Includes translations for nearly a dozen front-end languages.

Fully Documented

Detailed configuration guides take you step-by-step through all social network integration features available for Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Instagram, VK, Github, Amazon, Meetup and Windows Live.

Alternative

As every grandma, butterfly and barstool already knows social media plugins are a great way to promote your site. Joomla thankfully makes this easy, and you should be able to install a solid social media strategy within a couple of hours, and it should require little-to-no maintenance.

If you chose Joomla for the additional developer options that it has over WordPress, then you may find the extensions a little too cookie-cutter. If this is the case then consider using one of the article footer plugins, which will allow you to create your own social media plugin by choosing your fav social media sites, selecting your own images, and building your own links.

At JoomlaKave we have a wide variety of Joomla Extensions to better integrate your site and social media.

 

Google Plus Reader

Google Plus Updates Inside Module Position, Smart and Fast. A module to display your Google Plus updates inside you joomla site.The module has a nice interface with three styling themes. Simply give your Google Plus User ID, select style and enjoy.

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/google-plus-reader-module 

 

 

 

Social Profile and Followers

Display Your Social profiles and Followers in Joomla Site, Attractive & Easy Social Profiles & Followers is a Joomla module that helps to show various social profiles with nice 32px icon. We have added lots of social site icons and currently it’s possible to show at most 10 industry leading social network icons at a time.

 http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/social-profile-followers-joomla-module 

 

Pinterest Showcase Gallery

Create Your Own Pinterest Showcase Inside Joomla Site A smart and light weight Module for Joomla site to show Pinterest Pins in showcase style. It’s extensive feature also enables you to show pins from only a particular board as well. Easy, beautiful and attractive. -

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-modules/pinterest-showcase-gallery 

 

Pinterest Showcase Plugin

Display Pinterest Showcase Inside your Joomla Site. Easy & Attractive A smart shortcode based Plugin for joomla site to show Pinterest Pins in showcase mode in your joomla site. It’s extensive feature also enables you to show pins from only a particular board as well.

http://joomlakave.com/joomla-plugins/item/65-pinterest-showcase-plugin-for-jooma 

7 Best Joomla Extensions

5 May 2015, 12:00 am
Published in Blog

CMS platforms have become popular for developing various types of websites over the years. Though they were initiated to create blogs easily but now portfolios to full service business sites are being made in Joomla!, Wordpress, Drupal, Magento etc. When you are starting a site you may treat visual appearance as the first priority to attract traffic but the components which are invisible behind the curtain are much more important to keep the traffic stay in your site for a little longer. Security concerns, backup info, SEO are some points which are not to be overlooked otherwise your stunning site containing hundreds of animations and colorful designs may not attract even the least amount of people. For your convenience here are five extensions for Joomla! platform which will assist you to smarten up your site and create richer content in less time.

Admin Tools

To simplify your site administration tasks and to enhance your site’s security simultaneously, Admin Tools is the most effective Joomla! extension there is. Admin tool will make your life more comfortable with its power to notify and install updates, fix files and directory permissions, perform database maintenance, handle custom URL redirection, building a secure .htaccess fiile and create a secure environment in web by including an advanced Web Application Firewall. It is available in two editions, Admin Tools Core and Admin Tools Professional. And the Core version is free and downloading once will server for life time on infinite numbers of domains. 

 

 

 

jHackGuard

This is a security plugin designed by SiteGround to protect your Joomla from hacking attacks. It is effectively used against SQL injections, remote URL/File inclusions, remote code executions and xss based attacks. Each Joomla we install includes this plugin by default. We have also made it publicly available and it can be freely downloaded by anyone from our website.

 

Akeeba Backkup

This is another award-winning extension, being singled out several times for its excellence by the Joomla experts on the J and Beyond conference. Akeeba backup allows you to create and restore easily a Joomla site backup. Having a backup costs nothing, but not having one can cost you a lot. We highly recommend you to use Akeeba backup to create Joomla backups regularly.

K2

This is another one of the most frequently used components by our customers. No surprise that it has also traditionally been nominated and/or winning J and Beyond awards. Its creators from JoomlaWorks say that it replaces the spartan default Joomla article manager to give you much more editing options without making editing itself too complicated.

VirtueMart

This is definitely the most popular eCommerce plugin among our Joomla users. Probably because it is a comprehensive and yet free tool, that allows you to create and manage a full-fledged e-store as part of your Joomla website.

JCE

This is by far the most popular extension used by our customers. It makes content editing in Joomla easy and at the same time adds additional functionality on top of the default editing options. JCE has been awarded the best Joomla module and plugin in 2010 and the best free Joomla addon in 2012on J and Beyond conference. And looking at the number of people that use it, these awards seem to be well deserved!

 

sh404SEF

SEO is an important issue to deal with nowadays and if you are unsatisfied by your site’s present performance and looking for an ultimate plugin which will take care of your site ranking as well as your site’s security, there’s good news for you. Grab sh404SEF and see how your site climbs up the ranking ladder with maximized security to prevent common attacks. It has dynamic capabilities to retain users. It is also comfortable with numerous Joomla! sites and critics gave a high positive review for this plugin. It is quite economic with all these cool options. You might want to give it a try for achieving top ranks in search engine, a better security for your site and peace in your mind!



Top Joomla! Extentions Part 1

11 May 2015, 12:00 am
Published in Blog

 

Adding Gallery Functionality

 

Galleries are one of the most commonly-requested Extensions to Joomla! Perhaps then it is not surprising that there are a large number of options in this area. The list below includes both full-featured galleries and simple slideshow components.

 

Expose creates Flash-based slideshows. The size is adjustable and the resulting slideshow is search engine friendly. The Component includes album management and various configuration options that allow you to create attractive slideshows. This is a non-commercial Extension.

 

Frontpage Slideshow creates JavaScript and CSS-based slideshows. One of the most powerful features of this Extension is the ability to integrate text with images to create PowerPoint-type slides. Configuration options give you a great deal of control over the timing, display triggers and transitions. This is a commercial Extension.

 

The Phoca Component provides an image gallery that also includes slideshow functionality. The Extension provides a large number of options for controlling the catalog categories and the images they contain. Images can be displayed using a variety of techniques, including light boxes, slideshows or standard page views. The gallery supports images and videos and is search engine friendly. There are a number of Modules and themes available to extend the functionality of this Component. This is a non-commercial Extension.

 

RokSlideshow is a JavaScript-powered slideshow Module. The Extension provides a choice of six customizable transition types and thirty wipe and push transitions. You can add titles, captions and control font size and colors. This is a non-commercial Extension.

 

RSGallery provides an easy to customize gallery component. The Extension’s use of a separate Template system means you can modify the presentation significantly without hacking the core files. The Extension includes not only image and category management but also a slideshow functionality. RSGallery supports image download and integrates well with Community Builder. This is a non-commercial Extension.

 

Is there any extension to display image before and after in Joomla?

 

Before – After image gallery is a simple extension that displays two individual images ‘before and after’ at a time in a same window. Generally Before-After image gallery is used to display both edited image (after editing) and the image before edition (before editing) to compare the quality of image after editing. Therefore, many users and developers of Joomla demand this gallery for their need. In this cases, there is such extension in Joomla to provide users the optimum solution to exhibit such gallery in their websites.

The Joomla extension called ‘Responsive Before – After picture Gallery’ is simple Joomla content plugin to present such gallery from any Joomla article. This is a ‘shortcode’ based plugin, therefore, users can publish this gallery anywhere of the any article. It has a number of simple options where users need to configure before publishing it.

 

The features of the plugin

- Fully responsive picture gallery

- Images can be uploaded (before image and after image) in pair to compare.

- Maximum 20 pictures (10 pair of images) can be desplayed including before and after image

- Supported Image – jpg, png, jpeg, gif and more

- Gallery background color and image border color can be changed dynamically from the administrator panel

- The movement of sliding bar which deals with the comparison of the quality can be dynamically changed as ‘horizontal and vertical’

The Front end of the Gallery

 

 

See Live Demo : Demo 1 / Demo 2 /  Download this Gallery

 

Admin Features

 

 

 

 

It's an opportune time to take a look at some of the more popular Joomla extensions and see how they perform. Specifically, I looked at how they run on Joomla 2.5, the current "stable" release of Joomla. Joomla 3.0, which was released on September 27, 2012, has a lot of great features going for it, but the module ecosystem will still need some time to catch up. If you have moved to version 3.0, check with each specific extension's website to make sure it's compatible.

 

Akeeba Backup

Version tested: 3.6.6 (Stable)

Certified for: Joomla 2.5/3.0

Price: Free (Backup Core); 40 euros (about $52)/year (Backup Professional)

Like many extensions for the Joomla platform, Akeeba Backup fills a very specific niche: Backing up and (with a little extra script) restoring your Joomla website. I am happy to report that this is an extension that not only works as advertised, it will definitely be a part of my admin collection from now on.

Akeeba Backup is distributed under a freemium model. The Backup Core version is available free of charge; a subscription charge of 40 euros (about $52) per year gets you Akeeba Backup Professional, with extra features like enabling system restore points, automatic update, email notifications when there are updates or backups, and 128-bit cryptography. Not to mention some better support options.

Akeeba Backup is as easy to install as any other Joomla extension, and running the post-installation configuration is just a matter of clicking a single button and off you go. Backing up is just as simple; click the big blue button in the Akeeba control panel and in just a few minutes the site is backed up.

Things get a little less simple when you restore a site, but it's not too bad. All you need to do is download theAkeeba Kickstart package, then put all of the Kickstart files into your target restoration directory along with your backup files. Point your browser at kickstart.php, and it will walk you through a series of steps to restore your site, either on the original server or another server if you're moving it.

There is a nice bonus feature with the Kickstart/Backup combo: If you want, you can change several features like the database settings or admin user setting before the restoration, which makes it great for moving sites from one box to another.

Is Akeeba Backup Professional worth the money? I'm unsure. I was able to get a lot done with the Backup Core package, and was impressed with its features. If you have a lot of sites to manage, you will probably need the extra tools and features that come with the Pro version. The choice, though, is really up to you and your checkbook.

 

AllVideos

Version tested: 4.4

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free

Video content is something that every website administrator would really like to have, but often the complexities can be too much to handle.

It's not just the layout problems -- getting the video to be the right size, making sure locally hosted videos have a player with which to view them -- there's also the bandwidth issue. If you are posting a lot of video content, pretty soon any website that's not sitting on a load-balanced rack in somecloud somewhere is going to be crushed by the streaming bandwidth. (And if you don't know what that techno-jargon meant, then yeah, I'm talking to you.)

Enter AllVideos, JoomlaWorks' impressive plugin that manages to circumvent many of these issues.

What AllVideos does is simple: It lets you tag videos -- whether they are locally hosted or posted on any one of a slew of sites like YouTube, Ustream or Vimeo -- so they are embedded with your site's content. This may not sound like a big deal, since you can cut and paste HTML code from many of these sites now. But such code is cumbersome, and requires some knowledge of HTML, especially if you want to get the video to display at a certain size.

With AllVideos, you just type an opening tag, the video's URL or unique code, then a closing tag. Whatever WYSIWYG editor you're using will suffice. For my test, I shamelessly stole this guy's video about biking across the country. In the Article Manager, all I did was type a fictitious introductory sentence and then:

{youtube}itHSWj9DMq0{/youtube}

This kind of functionality is great for small-site admins who don't want to hassle with bandwidth constraints. Just upload the video to your favorite shared video site (such as YouTube) and tag the video to display on your own site. If you want to host your videos locally, however, you can easily do so. The AllVideos documentation spells out exactly how to tag your content so it comes up properly.

The AllVideos configuration screen enables you to set the default parameters for local videos, such as where they are stored and in what format. You can also set the default size for any displayed videos or whether video should be played automatically. You can also set this in the tags for each individual video.

And, in case you were wondering, AllVideos supports audio files too.

 

Community Builder

Version tested: 1.8.1

Certified for: Joomla 1.0/1.5/2.5

Price: Free (Add-ons extra)

There are lots of community-oriented packages out there for Joomla, with many different approaches to introducing elements of community site management into a site. For flexibility, Community Builder from Joomlapolis seems the current favorite.

It's not that I don't agree with this assessment, but you should be very clear about what you're getting with Community Builder versus other modules in this category. If you're expecting a rich, full-featured everything-you-could-ever-want-in-a-community-site package, then you're probably going to be disappointed.

Until you realize that Community Builder is offering something better.

What Community Builder delivers is a framework for a community site, not the entire pantheon of community site tools. So instead of getting a package that includes a blogging, forum or messaging system that you have to live with, Community Builder essentially enables you to use many of the tools you prefer to use already and -- this is the best part -- gets them to talk to each other.

Anyone who has put together a site that has a range of complex tools knows that the worst thing to deal with is the requirement for users to sign into one part of the site and then have to sign in again when they use another part of the site. Single sign-on is the Holy Grail for such sites, and you can pick and choose add-ons within Community Builder for many modules that will enable you to do just that.

Right out of the box, Community Builder starts setting up the single sign-on process by seamlessly integrating with your site's existing base login system. From there, it's just a matter of finding the right add-on for the tool you're already using or planning to use.

There are some drawbacks to Community Builder; for example, installing it is not a simple upload and go process. A total of four packages have to be installed, and then there a number of additional configuration steps you have to take to get things set just so. (The good news is this is all laid out in the README file in the downloaded package, and there's a lot of other documentation available on the Community Builder site.)

And then there's the bit with the add-ons. Community Builder is free of charge as delivered; it comes with its solid core features and the framework is all there. But to get the add-ons, you will need to upgrade to one of three additional subscription plans: Advanced, Professional or Developer. Those plans cost 65 euros (about $84), 95 euros (about $124) and 295 euros (about $385) annually, which isn't exactly cheap if you're running a small site.

There's a lot of high-grade integration in this framework, which makes this a strong candidate for your site. Just be sure it can do what you need at a price you can afford.

 

Googlemaps Plugin

Version tested: 2.17

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free

Happiness is a dead-simple plug-in that works right out of the box. That's what developer Mike Reumer has put together with his nicely designed Googlemaps Plugin.

Once enabled, you just enter a special tag (by default, {mosmap}) for the plug-in to appear within any page. The tag's default view can be easily set within the configuration settings or parameters can be added to have the displayed map show any location you wish in a variety of sizes and overlay choices.

I'd say more about this plug-in, but that's pretty much it. I was tickled to play around with the parameters (which aren't that hard to work with) to get some seriously cool interactive maps in place, and can't wait to figure out how to add these to my own site.

 

JCE

Version tested: 2.2.8.3 (for Joomla 2.5)

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free (Add-ons extra)

I'm a little ambivalent about this next plug-in, the Joomla Content Editor, also known as JCE. But it's not through any fault of the plug-in itself.

I like my writing tools very simple and free from distraction. I need to focus on the words themselves, not all the dandified formatting and alignment tools that can be a big distraction. That's why I like tools like GNU Emacs or iA Writerdepending on the platform I'm using, and that's why I can appreciate using the default editor within Joomla, TinyMCE. TinyMCE is simple, has some straightforward formatting tools, and there you are.

But putting my own idiosyncrasies aside, I have to say that for getting the look and feel of your site really crafted well, JCE has no peer. JCE doesn't replace TinyMCE, it adds on to what's there to give you a really robust editing tool.

Installation of JCE is easy; to activate it, you simply go into your site's Global Configuration settings and select JCE as your Default Editor.

 

By far my favorite tool in that massive toolbar is the Full Screen toggle button, which expands the entire editor out to the entire browser screen. My second-favorite control is the Toggle Editor link just about the JCE field that hides that four-row toolbar so it's out of the way to let me do what we like to do: write.

There are a few add-ons available for JCE, such as a Media Manager and an extended Image Manager, and yes, there's a subscription required to access these plug-ins, starting at 25 euros (about $32), with renewals starting a 15 euros (about $20). There's a nice demo site available if you want to see if the plug-ins are right for you.

If you want to fine-tune the look and feel of your site's content, then We would definitely recommend JCE.

 

 

JEvents

Version tested: 2.2.7 (for Joomla 2.5)

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free (Modules, themes extra)

Like many of the other modules within this review, JEvents, an events and calendar extension, has a free central component that has a number of additional add-ons and support services available. But this is a tool that's so complete as is, you may be hard pressed to need the additional features.

That's a little bit of hyperbole, but not very much. Right after installing JEvents, the main configuration screen pops up for you to get things squared away; there are a lot of options with which to work, including enabling the import/exports of iCal files and setting up an RSS feed for your events.

Setting a calendar up is straightforward: Just create a menu items and point the item to one of the many JEvents options that are available.

JEvents can get date information across to site visitors fast.

One thing to remember: You can't directly populate a calendar with events. You have to add a Create JEvents menu item that will enable that functionality.

This is not the smoothest plug-in in this collection, but with a little legwork, you can get exactly what you need out of JEvents.

 

Jtouch Mobile Template

Version tested: 2.5.12

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free

Of all of the tools examined in this roundup, this one's different. It's not a plug-in or extension -- it's actually a template designed specifically for presenting your site on mobile devices such as smartphones and templates.

The package you download has two main components: The actual template itself and the extra Mobile Controller plug-in that detects an incoming browser to see if it qualifies as a mobile platform.

The template is easy to configure as far as look and feel; it shows up well on smartphones.

I also appreciate how you can set up the Controller plugin to also display the mobile version of the site on tablet devices. This worked quite well on my iPad.

There are other mobile-suitable templates available for Joomla -- for example, the same developer also offers the Kunena Mobile Template and the Joom2Mobile Bootstrap Template. However, the variations on a theme that you can configure using Jtouch Mobile Template make this among the best of the bunch, especially for the price tag: Free.

 

Simple Image Gallery

Version tested: 2.2_j1.6

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free (basic); 14.90 euros (about $19.50) (Pro)

If you're looking for a fast way to display your photos in a slide-show manner on any page in your site, look no further. This is probably the easiest way I have seen to date to just drop photos onto your pages.

Simple Image Gallery is from JoomlaWorks, the same team that put together AllVideos. And, Simple Image Gallery works in much the same way.

All you need to do is upload all the images from a particular event or theme into a single folder of your choosing in Joomla's Media Manager. Then, using the {gallery} tag, you basically add the gallery of images to any page you want. The format is just: {gallery}Name_of_Folder{/gallery}.

Of course, there's more you can do with this plugin. If you opt for the Simple Image Gallery Pro tool, you can get additional gallery themes, different popup engines and captioning features. For the flat fee, I would definitely pick up the Pro version, especially if you like to display images on your site.

 

VirtueMart

Version tested: 2.0.12b

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/1.7/2.5

Price: Free

This is not the first time I have taken a look at VirtueMart, and it's had some nice updates in the intervening time.

And it's been noticed. VirtueMart is mentioned in nearly every Joomla tools list out there, and there's a burgeoning ecosystem that's growing up around plugins just for this shopping cart framework. The last time I reviewed this product, this ecosystem was a mere "healthy" -- now it's on steroids.

Compared to other e-commerce platforms, VirtueMart is still a bit light out of the box, but that is far outweighed by the sheer volume of all of the additional tools you can get. And even as is, VirtueMart has a lot of tools under the hood.

 

If you need a Joomla-specific commerce system, then VirtueMart would definitely be the place to start.

 

CDN for Joomla

Version tested: 2.1.2

Certified for: Joomla 1.5/2.5

Price: Free (Basic); 30 euros or $39 (Pro)

The business of handling website traffic is a tricky one. Most days, your server is just chugging along nicely, handling orders, displaying content and doing all the other things websites do with no muss and no fuss.

Then Oprah mentions she loves your latest product in a live television interview. Suddenly your Web server is about as useful as the melted piece of slag it's about to become.

It doesn't have to be as dramatic as that. Sometimes it's a random DDOS attack probing your site's defenses. Or you have a seasonal store that does a lot of traffic at certain times of the year and is quiet at all the other times. Whatever the reason, you don't want your website to slow down or, even worse, come to a screeching halt -- especially if it's your business at stake.

The trick to handling a lot of traffic is sharing the load. The one-server-trying-to-do-it-all model will only go so far -- for the really heavy lifting, your site needs more machines to handle the incoming requests for content. That's the very essence of content delivery networks (CDNs): In times of heavy traffic, these sites will take over serving parts of your site so your core site's database and e-commerce engine can function properly.

These CDNs are separate services for which you have to sign up. Once you have your bona fides established with a CDN like MaxCDN, Amazon CloudFront or CloudCache, then you can use the CDN for Joomla extension to connect your site to your chosen service.

CDN for Joomla comes in two flavors: the Basic version is free, while the Pro version costs 30 euros (about $39). The major difference between the two versions is that the Pro edition will support secure https transfers as well as multiple CDN roots. Having multiple roots is a very handy thing for larger sites, since you can have one CDN handling your multimedia content, another handling your images, and so on. The free version is also ad-supported.

Configuring CDN for Joomla is a snap: After obtaining the relevant information from the CDN service you are using, you type the information into the plug-in manager. You can then set the file types you want the CDN to actually start grabbing when traffic gets heavy.

CDN for Joomla works for CDNs that support pull zones -- meaning that you don't have to upload any files to the CDN's servers; the CDN will "pull" the content types you specify up to its servers as the need arises. This set-and-forget elasticity is what makes CDNs so nice to have, and a plug-in like CDN for Joomla so useful.

 

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