The Joomla! Project is pleased to announce the availability of Joomla! CMS 3 Beta1. Community members are asked to download and install the package in order to provide quality assurance for Joomla 3.1. Joomla 3.1 is scheduled for release on or around March 25th, 2013.
Joomla 3 is the latest major release of the Joomla CMS, with Joomla 3.1 the second short term support release in this series. Please note that going from Joomla 3.0 to 3.1 is a one-click upgrade and is NOT a migration. The same is true is for any subsequent versions in the Joomla 3 series. That being said, please do not upgrade any of your production sites to the beta version as beta is ONLY intended for testing.
What is this release for?
This is a beta release and not for use on production sites.
Extension developers are encouraged to work with this release in order to prepare extensions for the General Availability release of Joomla 3.1, though there shouldn’t be any backward compatibility issues. Users are encouraged to test the package for issues and to report issues in the Joomla! issue tracker.
What are the new features of Joomla! 3.1?
- 29855 – Tags (click here to see the recent blog post about it)
- 29822 – Show logs in debug console
- 30085 – Refactor installation to use new application and MVC classes
- 29965 – Add pagination in COM_SEARCH component
- 29770 – Added triggers on save for com_config
Miscellaneous: 28574 – Removed the GeSHi plug-in
What are the other new features of the Joomla! 3 series?
- Incorporation of Twitter Bootstrap into a jui media package.
- A new responsive administrator template–Isis– and interface.
- A new front end template–Protostar– built using Twitter Bootstrap Updated accessible template called Beez3
- PostgreSQL Driver. You will be able to run Joomla 3.0 sites using the PostgreSQL database.
- PHP Memcached Driver
- Use of JFeed for feed management rather than SimplePie
- Installation of language packages directly from the extension manager
- Guest user group present by default
- Saving blank articles allowed
- New administrator statistics module
- Update TinyMCE to version 3.5.6
- Continued clean up of older unused code, files and database fields and tables and improved standardization of tables.
- Improvements to Smart Search
- Extensive work on code style standardisation and consistency
- Unit testing in the CMS
- Updated system tests in the CMS
- Multilanguage: adding items associations in remaining core components.
- Language Installation tool for the Joomla Installer.
- Items associations in multi-language
- Allow different update packages for different version dev levels
What is the status of Joomla! 2.5?
Version 2.5 of the Joomla! CMS is a Long Term Support release and support for it will continue until shortly after the release of Joomla 3.5 scheduled for Spring 2014. Joomla 2.5 users do not need to migrate to Joomla 3.0 or 3.1.
Will I be able to update directly to Joomla! 3?
Moving to Joomla 3.x from Joomla 2.5 will be a mini-migration not an upgrade, although for the core of Joomla! the migration should be simple. However, it is likely that templates for Joomla 2.5 will need modification to work with Joomla 3 as will many extensions. Always test prior to migrating and consult with the developers of any extensions and templates you use.
What is the status of Joomla! 1.5?
Support for Joomla 1.5 ended in April of 2012 and we continued to support it unofficially until the end of 2012 for medium to high priority security issues.
Does that mean your 1.5 site will suddenly stop working? No, your site will continue to work as it always has. However, Joomla’s developers will not be releasing new versions for Joomla 1.5, so you won’t be getting bug fixes or security fixes. For this reason, it’s recommended to migrate from 1.5.
Moving from 2.5 to any Joomla 3 version is relatively simple, since Joomla has made the process easy for newer versions. Unfortunately, moving from 1.5 is not a trivial task. Fortunately, there are two good extensions that make the process easier: jUpgrade and SPUpgrade.
You have a choice of going straight to Joomla 3.0 or going to 2.5 first. Both jUpgrade and SPUpgrade have versions ready for both versions. Please consult with their documentation on how to migrate from Joomla 1.5 to 3.0/2.5.
For most new/migrated sites, the Joomla! 3 series is the preferred series and starting on it avoids a mini-migration from Joomla 2.5 later down the road. Starting on the Joomla 3 series for a new/migrated site, also provides you with longer backward compatible support (with one-click upgrades) than starting a new site on 2.5 right now, because support for 3.x ends in 2016.
How can you help Joomla development?
There are a variety of ways in which you can get actively involved with Joomla! It doesn’t matter if you are a coder, an integrator, or merely a user of Joomla!. You can contact the Joomla! Community Development Manager, David Hurley, firstname.lastname@example.org, to get more information, or if you are ready you can jump right into the Joomla! Bug Squad.
The Joomla Bug Squad is one of the most active teams in the Joomla development process and is always looking for people (not just developers) that can help with sorting bug reports, coding patches and testing solutions. It’s a great way for increasing your working knowledge of Joomla, and also a great way to meet new people from all around the world.
You can also help Joomla development by thanking those involved in the many areas of the process. The project also wants to thank all of the people who have taken the time to prepare and submit work to be included in Joomla 1.6,1.7, 2.5, & 3.1, and to those who have worked very hard on the Joomla Platform separation project.
If you are an extension developer, please make sure you subscribe to the general developer mailing list as this is a place where you can discuss extension development and news that may affect custom development will be posted from time to time.