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(Reading time: 3 - 6 minutes)
24Jul2022

“I read it somewhere on the internet …”

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123 hits Updated: 25 July 2022 Blog

How forum rules are supposed to operate

Asking (and answering) questions “the smart way”

Forum rules are meant to help people who do not know how to use forums.  Technical discussion forums, in particular, can be scary for novice users because every forum is different: forums develop their own unique culture, set of traditions (many of which are codified/laid down in a set of rules), behaviour and etiquette and it takes time for newcomers to understand how things are “done” before they’re ready to post their first question.  Forum rules should help people understand how they to go about obtaining information and asking for assistance with problems they may be having.  How often, therefore, do we read on various forums,

I saw some information somewhere on the internet that related to my problem but nothing worked ...
I remember seeing something on this forum but when I followed the instructions it did not help ...
According to my research, the documentation is wrong or non-existent ...
I’ve followed all the other tips about my problem but nothing helps ...

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(Reading time: 2 - 4 minutes)
09Jul2022

Confidence in Joomla! as a platform for building websites

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119 hits Updated: 09 July 2022 Blog

Having confidence in J! as a website development platform

J! usage statistics

It must be stated at the outset that Joomla! is a wonderful platform for building websites.  I also believe that J! 4.x is a good foundation for building websites.  If you want to build a new website using J! I would recommend that you use the latest version of J! 4.x.

I have a reputation for criticising the way that the J! 4 project has been managed over time—I’ve also been critical about the organisational structure of Open Source Matters, Inc.—but my criticisms of such matters should not be taken as a sign that my admiration for the volunteers who have built a CMS platform is diminished in any way or that one should lack confidence in them.

I want to write a little (?) about how I have observed people’s experiences—including their frustrations—“coming to terms” with J! 4.x.  While I say that I recommend building new websites with J! 4.x I would also add that migrating from older versions of J! is not always easy.  It is this combination of factors—difficulties people have with installing or migrating to J! 4.x—that have lowered people’s expectations about Joomla as a website-building platform.

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(Reading time: 5 - 9 minutes)
12Apr2022

“Invalid login” error when trying to update Joomla

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209 hits Updated: 13 April 2022 Blog

What causes the “Invalid login” error?

How to fix this error.

“Invalid login” errorOne of the most common problems that people have when updating from one version of Joomla to another is when they encounter a cryptic “Invalid login” error that appears on the screen.  The problem arises from a failure in the script ../administrator/components/com_joomlaupdate/restore.php, however, knowing which line(s) of code generate the error message is not enough to answer the question:  “What is this ‘invalid login’ we're talking about?“References:

  ▫  "Invalid login" when attempting to update Joomla 3.4.8 to 3.7.5
  ▫  Error 'Invalid login' when trying to update to 3.9.22
  ▫  Trying to update from 3.9.8 to 3.9.16, error - invalid login
  ▫  Error: Invalid login during Joomla upgrade
  ▫  Invalid login when upgrading
  ▫  ERROR: Invalid login - Joomla 3.9.1 Update
  ▫  Got error Invalid Login with 3.9.26 update
  ▫  Invalid login on update
  ▫  Update to 3.9.23 stops with Error: Invalid login
  ▫  Errors in 2.5.26, 3.2.6, and 3.3.5
  ▫  ERROR: Invalid login
  ▫  ERROR: Invalid login - Joomla 3.9.6
  ▫  Error: Invalid login
  ▫  3.9.19 to 3.9.20: AJAX Loading Error: Invalid login
  ▫  I can't get update Joomla from 3.7 to 3.9, I see error invalid login
  ▫  Invalid Login during update
  ▫  Again - Invalid login Error

“Invalid login” is a kind of catch-all error condition that occurs when something goes wrong during the unpacking of the Joomla update package.  You’re probably scratching your head at this lack of specificity but that’s really all we can say about the error message.  We are able, however, to list a few common causes that contribute to problems when running the Joomla! Update component even if we cannot pinpoint the exact cause in every circumstance.

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(Reading time: 3 - 5 minutes)
07Apr2022

What is the “secret word” in Joomla used for?

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276 hits Updated: 08 April 2022 Blog

What is the “secret word” in Joomla’s configuration settings used for?

I’m unable to learn about this “secret word” in Joomla:  what is it’s purpose … [and is it] useful for website owner?  Please tell me its complete usage and advantage if you know.forum user, Joomla Forum, 14-Jan-2011

You may be wondering why I dredged up a question asked ten years ago as a preamble to this article.  It’s actually a very good question that has never been really satisfactorily explained in plain English.  For example, if you take some of the “guided tours” of Joomla’s configuration.php fileJoomla 4 Configuration.php file—8-Sep-2021, inmotion.com; A Guided Tour of Joomla's configuration.php File—12-Jun-2019, Joomlashack in one case there is a suggestion that this is displayable in J! 4.x by going to System » Global Configuration » Server » Server (which isn’t true since J! 2.5) and in another case the only information about this setting is that it’s generated when Joomla! is first installed, is not changeable and used “internally” by Joomla! for security purposes; it is true that you cannot change this value using the Global Configuration facility but you can change it by editing the configuration.php file and it’s true that the value is generated when a J! website is created but the internal purposes of $secret are not explained.  Can you change $secret or can’t you (and what happens if you do)?  To further confuse the matter, some people have recommended that you should change this value https://www.itoctopus.com/25-joomla-important-tips.

In this article we will discuss one line of code in the file configuration.php (at about line 20) located in the root folder of a J! website.  It looks like something like this:

	public $secret = 'RndmL3ttrsNumbrs';

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