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Joomla! is an open source content management system platform for publishing content on the World Wide Web and intranets as well as a Model–view–controller (MVC) Web application framework. It is written in PHP, stores data in MySQL and includes features such as page caching, RSS feeds, printable versions of pages, news flashes, blogs, polls, search, and support for language internationalization. Joomla is used at 24, or 0.24%, of the 10,000 most popular websites (as ranked by Alexa).[1]


Plugins and extensions

The Joomla! package consists of many different parts, which allow modular extensions and integrations to be made easily. An example of such are extensions called "Plugins".[2] (Previously known as "Mambots".) Plugins are background extensions that extend Joomla! with new functionality. The WikiBot, for example, allows the author of Joomla! content to use "Wikitags" in Joomla! articles which will auto-create dynamic hyperlinks to Wikipedia articles when displayed.[3]

In addition to Plugins, more comprehensive extensions are available. There are over 3,000 extensions for Joomla! available via the Extensions Directory.[4] For example, there are several forms extensions for Joomla: perForms,[5] Fabrik (formely Mosforms),[6] and bfForms (formerly Joomla Forms).[7] "Components" allow webmasters to perform such tasks as build a community by expanding user features, back up a website, translate content, create URLs that are more friendly to search engines, and add shopping cart functionality for an e-commerce website.[2] "Modules" perform such tasks as displaying a calendar or allowing custom code like Google AdSense etc., to be inserted within the base Joomla! code.[2]

Other features

Joomla! permits administrators to set global configuration parameters that affect every article.[8] Every page conforms to these parameters by default, but a page can have its own setting for each parameter. For example, you can select to show or hide the article author or simply go with the global "show author" parameter.


Joomla can be installed manually from source code on a system running a web server which supports PHP applications. Manual installation usually requires more time and experience than other alternatives such as installing Joomla from a package management system or using a TurnKey Joomla appliance which pre-integrates Joomla and its dependencies as a ready-to-use system[9].

Many web hosting services provide a control panel which automates the deployment of a basic Joomla web site.


  • In keeping with the stated vision of "Software that is free, secure and of high-quality," any third-party extensions submitted to the official Joomla! Extension Directory (JED) web page, which was already packed with over 3800+ extensions listed as of December 15, 2009, must now also conform to the GPLv2 license for free distribution. This has allegedly caused some predictable objections from some for-profit plugin vendors[who?].
  • Joomla! 1.5.x will work with any number of domain names in one installation, but showing different content for each one requires the use of third party extensions or modifications to the core or server configuration. However, each page can be configured to use a different template and/or can be made accessible via different domains using the "external link" menu option in Joomla! which appears as a different site to the user.
  • Bi-directional language templates that make use of Joomla!'s comprehensive bi-directional language support, other than those included with the standard install, are less common, and many don't allow for easy switching between LTR and RTL language formats. Most other templates can be easily modified via Joomla!'s built-in template editor.[10]
  • Access control granularity beyond Joomla! 1.5.x's nine built-in user groups currently requires the use of third-party extensions, although this is planned for Joomla! 1.6.[11]
  • Article organization beyond Joomla! 1.5.x's current Section/Category hierarchy requires the use of third party extensions,[12] however flexible category structure support is planned for Joomla 1.6
  • All "pages" (views) in Joomla! are referenced in the system by a unique ID number assigned by way of its "menu item" (link). So, for any page to function properly as part of the framework, it must have at least one menu item associated with it, whether that menu item is visible or not. This may be initially confusing to some newcomers.


Joomla! came into being as the result of the fork of Mambo by the development team on August 17, 2005. At that time, the Mambo name was trademarked by Miro International Pvt Ltd, who formed a non-profit foundation with the stated purpose to fund the project and protect it from lawsuits.[13] The development team claimed that many of the provisions of the foundation structure went against previous agreements made by the elected Mambo Steering Committee, lacked the necessary consultation with key stake-holders and included provisions that violated core open source values.[14]

The development team created a web site called OpenSourceMatters to distribute information to users, developers, web designers and the community in general. The project team leader Andrew Eddie, a.k.a. "MasterChief" wrote an open letter to the community[15] which appeared on the announcements section of the public forum at

A thousand people had joined the web site within a day, most posting words of encouragement and support and the web site received the slashdot effect as a result. Miro CEO Peter Lamont gave a public response to the development team in an article titled "The Mambo Open Source Controversy - 20 Questions With Miro".[16] This event created controversy within the free software community about the definition of "open source". Forums at many other open source projects were active with postings for and against the actions of both sides.

In the two weeks following Eddie's announcement, teams were re-organized and the community continued to grow. Eben Moglen and the Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) assisted the Joomla! core team beginning in August 2005, as indicated by Moglen's blog entry from that date and a related OSM announcement.[17][18] The SFLC continue to provide legal guidance to the Joomla! project.[19]

On August 18, 2005, Andrew Eddie called for community input on suggested names for the project. The core team indicated that it would make the final decision for the project name based on community input. The name the core team eventually chose was not on the list of suggested names provided by the community.

On September 1, 2005 the new name, "Joomla!", was announced, which is the English spelling of the Arabic word jumla (جملة) meaning "all together" or "as a whole", as well as "sentence" (as in, phrase).[20]

On September 6, 2005, the development team called for logo submissions from the community, invited the community to vote on the logo preferred, and announced the community's decision on September 22, 2005. Following the logo selection, brand guidelines, a brand manual, and set of logo resources were published on October 2, 2005 for the community's use.[21]

Joomla! (Joomla 1.0.0) was released on September 16, 2005. It was a re-branded release of Mambo which, itself, was combined with other bug and moderate-level security fixes. Joomla! won the Packt Publishing Open Source Content Management System Award in both 2006 and 2007.[22][23]

On October 27, 2008, PACKT Publishing announced Johan Janssens the "Most Valued Person" (MVP) for his work as on of the lead developers of the 1.5 Joomla Framework and Architecture. In 2009 Louis Landry received the "Most Valued Person" award for his role as Joomla architect and development coordinator.

Joomla! version 1.5 was released on January 22, 2008. The most recent release (November 4, 2009) is 1.5.15. View the full 1.5. version history. At the end of June 2009 an alpha version of 1.6 has been made available for testing purposes.

By October, 2009, the 2009 Open Source CMS Market Share Report reached the conclusion that Joomla! is the web's most popular open source content management system. That conclusion was based on an extensive analysis of rate of adoption patterns and brand strength and was backed by a survey of users.[24]

See also


  1. Joomla at
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "Joomla Extensions Directory - Content Management". 2007-07-28.,com_mtree/task,listcats/cat_id,1766/Itemid,35/. Retrieved 2007-07-28. 
  3. Messiah (August 2007). "WikiBot2".,com_mtree/task,viewlink/link_id,2825/Itemid,35/. Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  4. "Joomla Extensions Directory - FrontPage". Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  5. Template:Harvnb
  6. Template:Harvnb
  7. Template:Harvnb
  8. "Joomla Flash Tutorial". 
  9. "Joomla Appliance". TurnKey Linux Virtual Appliance Library. Retrieved 2009-12-11. 
  10. "Bidirectional support". 2008-12-30. 
  11. "Joomla! White Papers for J! 1.6 - Accepted". 2008-12-19. 
  12. "Section/Category Manager". 2008-02-15. 
  13. "Mambo Foundation web site, Goals and objectives". 2006-01-09. Retrieved 2007-03-14. 
  14. "Joomla Forum Discussion by Development Team members and Community". 2007-05-07.,73.0.html. Retrieved 2007-05-07. 
  15. Andrew Eddie (2005-08-17). "Mambo Open Source Development Team - Letter to the community". Retrieved 2009-08-31. 
  16. Ric Shreves (2005-08-21). "The Mambo Open Source Controversy - 20 Questions With Miro". Retrieved 2007-07-26. 
  17. Moglen, Eben (August 2005). "Why I like Open Source Matters (was Why I Like Mambo)". Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  18. Russell, Peter (2005). "Award-winning Development Team Welcomes New Arrival — Joomla!". Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  19. Open Source Matters, Inc (undated). "Partners". Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  20. Joomla!Forum • New Name Announced - Joomla!:by brian on Thu Sep 01, 2005 6:43 pm
  21. Open Source Matters, Inc (2008). "Logo Usage and Brand Guide". Retrieved 2008-10-08. 
  22. "2006 Open Source Content Management System Award Winner Announced". Packt Publishing. 2006-11-14. Retrieved 2007-03-08. 
  23. "Joomla Wins Best PHP Open Source Content Management System". Packt Publishing. 2007-10-31. Retrieved 2007-10-31. 
  24. "2009 Open Source CMS Market Share Report," page 57, by water&stone and CMSWire Oct, 2009


  • Severdia, Ron; Crowder, Kenneth (2009), Using Joomla: Building Powerful and Efficient Web Sites, O'Reilly Media, ISBN 0596804946 
  • Jowers, Tim (2007), Open Source Pro: Joomla,, ISBN 1430306386 

Further reading

  • Graf, Hagen (2006). Building Websites with Joomla. Packt Publishing. ISBN 1904811949. 
  • Graf, Hagen (2008). Building Websites with Joomla 1.5 stable. Packt Publishing. ISBN 1847195302. 
  • Kennard, James (2007). Mastering Joomla! 1.5: Extension and Framework Development. Packt Publishing. ISBN 978-1-847192-82-0. 
  • Kennard, James (2009). Joomla! 1.5 Development Cookbook. Packt Publishing. ISBN 978-1-847198-14-3. 
  • LeBlanc, Joseph (2007). Learning Joomla Extension Development: Creating Modules, Components, and Plugins with PHP. Packt Publishing. ISBN 1847191304. 
  • Dawson, Brandon; Canavan, Tom (2007). Joomla Cash. Packt Publishing. ISBN 1847191401. 
  • North, Barrie (2007). The Joomla Admin Manual: A Step by Step Guide to a Successful Website. LuLu. ISBN 9780615146751. 
  • North, Barrie (2009). Joomla! 1.5 A User's Guide: Building a Successful Joomla Powered Website, Second Edition. Prentice Hall. ISBN 9780137012312. 
  • Rahmel, Dan (2007). Beginning Joomla: From Novice to Professional. Apress. ISBN 1590598482. 
  • Rahmel, Dan (2007). Professional Joomla. Wrox. ISBN 978-0-470-13394-1. 
  • Sarkar, Suhreed (2009). Joomla! E-Commerce with VirtueMart: Build feature-rich online stores with Joomla! 1.0/1.5 and VirtueMart 1.1.x. Packt Publishing. ISBN 978-1-847196-74-3. 
  • Sarkar, Suhreed (2009). Joomla! with Flash: Build a stunning, content-rich, and interactive web site with Joomla! 1.5 and Flash CS4. Packt Publishing. ISBN 978-1-847198-24-2. 
  • Walker, Allan (2010). Joomla! 1.5 Multimedia: Build media-rich Joomla! web sites by learning to embed and display Multimedia content. Packt Publishing. ISBN 978-1-847197-70-2. 

External links

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