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Leave $live_site='' in Joomla configuration.php

235 hits Updated: 27 June 2023 Blog

What is does this \(live_site thing do?

Be wary about “official documentation”

Some advice for people who use Akeeba Backup

There's a setting in the J! configuration file that has been there since J! 1.0; in a brand-new J! 4.x installation you will find it at around line 40 and it looks like this

	public \)live_site = '';
The [Forum Post Assistant tool] sometimes reports "Live Site is not empty" and experts here say it should be and to edit configuration.php to make it empty.  I have looked through the core Joomla code and … see that live_site is reported in the System Information » Configuration File tab.  [A non-empty value turns all URLs into 'garbage' that] makes the site unusable … but there is no place where it is set within Joomla.

I guess this is for some special purpose known only to a few.  Can anyone explain the intended use of this parameter?  How is it set other than by editing configuration.php?forum user, Joomla Forum, 15-Apr-2022

There is no mechanism within Joomla that allows a website owner to change this value. If people have a different value for \(live_site it is because they have edited the file configuration.php themselves.  There are literally hundreds of posts on technical forums that discuss problems people have with using a non-null value for \)live_siteHundreds of posts!  So, why do people use a non-null value for $live_site especially when there’s no mechanism with J! to set or change it?

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(Reading time: 2 - 4 minutes)

How to fix missing items in Joomla Components menu

446 hits Updated: 26 June 2023 Blog

“Missing” items in the Components menu; what causes this to happen and how to fix the problem

In this article we will investigate a common problem with Joomla website administration, the case of “missing” items in the Components menu.  Here is a typical question we see posted on various technical discussion forums

[I am] trying to update Joomla 3.8.7 to latest using the link that [my] site sent to me ... [but] I don't seem to have a Joomla! Update [item] in the Components list.forum user, Joomla Forum, 20-Nov-2020

There are several reasons why this problem occurs.  The most common reason is because of “corrupted” entries in the _menu table.  There may be other causes but it is beyond the scope of this article to discuss them here.

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(Reading time: 5 - 9 minutes)

Everything is “fine” … except it isn’t

Four important PHP settings

Max. input time

Max. Upload Size

Max. POST Size

Memory Limit

You can create Joomla! websites just a­bout any­where; there are thou­sands of com­mercial web­hosting ser­vices to showcase your work to the world.  You can also host your websites using your own personal computer (before put­ting them “out there” on the world wide web).  So why do so many seem to have people have trouble maintaining their Joomla! websites?

There are many products you can install on your PC—de­pen­ding on the operating system—such as Wampserver, XAMPP, MAMP, LAMP.

See also Technical Requirements; for a com­pre­hen­sive list of additional PHP environmental settings used with Joomla, please see Optional Technical Requirements for J! 3.x or Optional Technical Requirements for J! 4.x (whichever applies to your particular circumstances).  Note that some of these “optional” requirements are actually needed!

I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve seen people begging for help on technical forums, saying, “I created a J! website and everything was fine until I tried to add a new extension (or update the software … or change something).  What could possibly be wrong?”  When we find out more about their hosting environment we discover that it’s a shambles.  Everything was not “fine” to begin with; if they’d made a couple of small changes to the hosting environment they wouldn’t have the mess that they now have.  Does this sound like you?  Would you like to know about four important PHP settings that can mean the difference between happy webcrafting and tear-your-hair-out frustration and misery?  If this sounds like you this article may just be a life-saver.

I’ve written before about a few of the important things people can do to maintain their Joomla! websites.  Let’s summarise a few important PHP settings that determine whether you can maintain your J! website or whether you can’t.  The following table lists those settings (and my recommendations for how you should use them):

PHP settings and Joomla

Next up, “Memory Limit = -1” …

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(Reading time: 1 - 2 minutes)

A progressive reading bar in your Joomla website (without extensions)

2108 hits Updated: 05 November 2022 Blog

What is a “reading progress bar”?

Create a custom HTML module

Assign the module to the pages where you want the “reading progress bar” to appear

You may have noticed when you scroll down the pages on this website that there's a green-coloured bar at the top of the page that moves.  This bar is sometimes called a “reading progress bar” and there are a number of extensions you can obtain that will do this.

I was inspired to write a simple module—don’t worry, there’s nothing you need to download or install—after reading this question posted at The Joomla! Forum™.

I've noticed something new … a blue progress bar … [corresponding to] the vertical scroll … and distance to bottom of page.forum user, Joomla forum,18-Aug-2022

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