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Why you should upgrade Joomla! to its latest version?

A while back, we shared 10 reasons why you should update your website. In case you missed that, you can scan for a brief. Today we are looking at updating your Joomla! to the most recent version, together with Joomla! extensions and why it’s important.
If you are wondering how you will know that you need an upgrade, you can subscribe to the Joomla! Security Announcement feed. This feed gives you all the information about new releases that you may need, including announcements of resolved security issues in Joomla! software releases.
Why is it important?
1. New security updates and bug fixes. Various security vulnerabilities were found to affect Joomla! version 1.5 to 3.7. which have been addressed in the new Joomla! software releases. They include;
a) Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities -This is used to target website visitors whereby attackers inject JavaScript on the website, hence the browser is unable to tell if its part of the website or not. Through the above, malicious actions can be done such as the distribution of spam to unsuspecting visitors, phishing, stealing data e.t.c.
b) SQL injection (SQLi) vulnerability – In simple words, attackers inject malicious code into a website’s database. This can allow the attacker to run SQL commands to steal customer information, delete an entire database, gain full website control e.t.c.
2. Take advantage of features and bug fixes in the latest version. They include; code improvements to improve readability and processing time, encryption support, smooth migration to the next Joomla! Version 4 and much more. You can read more here. Some of this exciting features include;
a) New Routing System – The new routing system gives users more control over their URL structure, including the often requested ability to remove IDs from URLs
b) Joomla! 4 Compatibility Layer – The development of Joomla! 4 has made some changes in how the core code is structured by migrating classes to use PHP namespaces. Joomla! 3.8 includes a mapping layer to allow developers to use the older class names while being able to take advantage of the new class name structure
c) Improved Sample Data Installation – It is now possible to install sample data within your site backend after finishing the installation process, allows users to create their own generic datasets or extension developers to provide easy-to-install sample data for their extensions
d)Sodium Encryption Support -PHP 7.2 introduces the new sodium extension for processing encrypted data, through a polyfill of this library Joomla! 3.8 makes this new API available for all their users even before they upgrade to PHP 7.2
3. New versions fix a number of bugs and security issues. We advise our clients to always upgrade to the latest maintenance version because Joomla! offers technical support for the latest versions.
Here is a checklist before you the upgrade

  1. Check technical requirements. Check in with us or check your cPanel to ensure you are on the suggested supported version of PHP.
  2. Manually backup your website. Get in touch with us so that we can advise you on how to go about a manual backup.
  3. Joomla! documentation recommend that you update all third party extensions and plugins to ensure there is compatibility between one Joomla! version to another.
  4. Ensure your developer helps you with the upgrade to avoid any data loss.

The Author

Viona W.

With over 7 years of experience crafting tech content, Viona W is a valuable asset to the HOSTAFRICA editorial team. Her skills extend beyond writing, as she also boasts experience in public relations and cultivating relationships with media outlets. This makes Viona adept at ensuring HOSTAFRICA's achievements and initiatives gain well-deserved public recognition. When Viona isn't immersed in the world of tech, she enjoys seeking out new experiences in nature and the power of storytelling to create positive change.

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