Joomla Admin - for adults only!
Backing up the website. The best (and easiest!) way is to use the AKEEBA component for backing up the whole website. It is VERY useful also for migrating a Joomla website from one server to another - including from your own localhost computer, e.g. after design and testing with XAMPP, to a hosted domain, or vice versa. Ensure the versions of PHP on localhost are the same as those on remote host's server. Check Akeeba documentation for which versions of PHP you should be using. To use AKEEBA log in at the BACK END and from Control Panel and select AKEEBA from the drop down list of COMPONENTS. This will open the AKEEBA control panel which has, among many others, a button to launch the back-up process. There is also extensive documentation, manuals, tutorials etc for Akeeba that may be useful. AKEEBA is currently configured to output a JPA file which will be called something like site-www.nynehead.org-20110621-193522.jpa and saved in public_html/joomla/administrator/components/com_akeeba/backup on the website.
There is a SECURITY issue. The JPA backup file contains a COMPLETE copy of the website - including passwords and any sensitive data that may have been entered on the website. In theory it could be hacked. Best practice is to REMOVE the JPA file from the website and store it on your own computer. If you configure the AKEEBA module to execute a regular backup, you must also configure your memory to remove the JPA file! You should backup the website after any substantial changes that you would not want lost. Similarly, if you plan radical changes it is as well to backup what is there before you start, so you can restore it things go awry. I keep the two most recent backups.
To use the JPA backup to restore or move a website, use FTP to upload the JPA backup file e.g. site-www.nynehead.org-20110621-193522.jpa to the root directory of your domain AND a PHP file called KICKSTART. A copy is in joomla/store/kickstart.php. Then use a browser to navigate to the KICKSTART file via the FRONT END of your website - e.g. nynehead.org/kickstart.php - and follow the prompt i.e. click the bright green button saying START! Bob should be your uncle and Fanny your aunt. If not, consult the Akeeba docs.
UPDATING Joomla and any add-ons
- Joomla and any installed extensions are checked every time you log in to the BACKEND. Any updates will be signalled and usually simply require an 'INSTALL NOW' button to be clicked.
- Click on the Purge Cache icon to clear out the cache.
- You can also click on the Find Updates icon on the toolbar. Any available updates will then be listed including those for extensions.
- Select the update (using the checkbox) and click on the Update icon in the toolbar.
IMPORTANT: This process may take a few minutes. When updating anything, WAIT for the success message before navigating away!
I have edited the TEMPLATE HTML so if you re-install the TEMPLATE the chances are things will not look the same - which may be what you want!
To edit a TEMPLATE and/or its associated CSS files from the BACKEND go to Template Manager. There are 2 tabs; Styles and Templates. The default view seems to be the Styles view. Click the Templates tab which opens a page showing all the installed TEMPLATES with a thumbnail screenshot of each. Scroll to the TEMPLATE you want to edit and click on its name. This opens a new Template Manager window called Customise Template. There are links for the Template Master Files and Stylesheets. Depending on what template has been used there many be lots of Stylesheets! so be sure to edit the correct one.
If you come across comments in either the TEMPLATE file or the CSS Stylesheets prefixed by dL these preecede edits or insertions of mine.
To alter what appears above each ARTICLE in the way of Joomla automatic additions, e.g. author, date, category etc, the GLOBAL settings are made in ARTICLE MANAGER and by selecting the OPTIONS icon. These settings can be over-ridden on individual article using the ARTICLE OPTIONS drop down list to the right of the editing pane.