Best Joomla! Hosting

This Best Joomla! Hosting review gives details on this open source content management system that is offered for free through many top web hosting companies. Keep reading to learn what Joomla CMS is, what Joomla can be used for, who is using Joomla, and pros and cons of Joomla.
Related article: Drupal Hosting Review

Best Free Web Hosts

  1. 150m - 150MB Web Space / Ads
  2. 20m - 20MB Disk Space / Ads
  3. StormLoader - 50MB Web Space

Top Cheap Web Hosts

  1. BlueHost - $3.49 Unlimited Sites
  2. FatCow - $4.08 Free Domain
  3. JustHost - $2.95 Free Site Builder

If you are looking for a popular content management system with lots of online support and extensions, Joomla might be right for you. Keep reading to find out more about Joomla hosting.

What is Joomla?

Joomla is a very popular open source content management for helping web site owners manage their web sites. Because Joomla is open source, users can download and use Joomla for free, and they are allowed to modify the code to fit their needs. Web developers can charge clients for installing and modifying Joomla, though they cannot charge for the software itself.

Joomla was created in 2005 as a fork of Mambo open source content management system, when some of the developers involved in Mambo became unhappy with the direction Mambo was going and used the code to form a new open source CMS project, Joomla. Andrew Eddie led this occurrence, and it resulted in a dispute in the open source community over what defined software as open source.

Joomla can be used for a variety of applications, including:

  • Personal blogs
  • Family web sites
  • Online businesses for both small businesses and large corporations
  • Intranets for use within corporations
  • Non-profit, community, and church organization web sites
  • Class and school web pages 
  • Online publishing
  • Government portals

Joomla is used by thousands of web sites. Some of the users of Joomla hosting include:

  • Harvard University
  • IHOP
  • MTV's Quizilla
  • Outdoor Photographer magazine

Features of Joomla CMS

Joomla's core software package offers numerous features, and there are over 3,000 free extensions that users can add on. Users who are familiar with programming can also customize Joomla with their own codes.

Some of the features of Joomla and its extensions include:

  • Point and click to add pages
  • Use a word-processor like interface to edit pages
  • Upload pictures, videos, and music over the web
  • Decide how you want visitors to interact with your web site
  • User registration and login
  • Directory of contacts
  • Page caching for better performance
  • RSS feeds to receive syndicated content like blogs or news
  • Printable pages
  • Blogs
  • Polls
  • News flashes
  • Multilingual capabilities
  • TCPDF for creating PDF documents
  • Web site backups
  • Page translation
  • Creating user features
  • Search-engine friendly URLs
  • Calendars
  • Custom code support, such as Google ads
  • Options to set standards for the entire web site or for individual pages

What are the pros and cons of Joomla?

Joomla is a large, well-established open source CMS, and it is likely that support for Joomla will continue to exist in the future. Its web site has lots of tutorials and information to help you get started with Joomla. Once Joomla is up and running it is fairly easy to use.

Joomla may be hard to get running if you don't have a lot of experience with web site development, though that can be true of any open source CMS, and Joomla's tutorials help you through the process. Joomla must be installed separately for each web site you want to use it on.

What do I need to do to use Joomla?

To use Joomla, you should first set up a web hosting account with a web host that meets Joomla's basic requirements. For Joomla 1.5.x these include:

  • PHP 4.3.10 at the minimum, though 5.2+ is recommended. It is not for use with PHP 4.3.9, 4.4.2, or 5.0.4 because of bugs in those versions. Also, Zend Optimizer 2.5.10 for PHP 4.4x has major bugs. Joomla is not yet compatible with PHP 5.3
  • MySQL 3.23 or later database, version 4.1.x or higher is recommended. Joomla 1.5.x is not ready for MySQL 6.x
  • Apache 1.3 or higher web server, version 2.x+ is recommended. Joomla can also run on Microsoft IIS 6, though 7 is recommended

The next installment, Joomla 1.6, requires PHP 5.2+ and MySQL 5.0.4+

If your web hosts meets these requirements, you will need to be able to:

  • Upload files through FTP
  • Create a MySQL database
  • Use Joomla's installation wizard to install Joomla

If you have never done these things before, your web host may have tools to help you with these tasks.

You can test Joomla online at Joomla's web site and on your own computer before installing it on your live web site. Testing the software online requires you to set up a free account. You may then try out and modify the online version - it refreshes itself every 30 minutes so you don't have to worry about messing anything up permanently.

Joomla also offers alternative installation options. You can use a TurnKey Linux format, or, if you are using virtualization software on Windows, Mac, or Linux, you can use a JumpBox version.

Visit Joomla's web site at

We have found FatCow to be one of the best Joomla! hosting providers. 

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