Installing Joomla 2.5 Manually

| Joomla


For this tutorial, we're going to assume you're brand new to this entire idea of installing Joomla and go back to the beginning. The installation procedure for 2.5 is almost the same process it's always been, but we're going to note a new feature and use updated screen shots for you, so we have the most current installation tutorial available.

If you've haven't read it yet, make sure also read about what's new in this version via "25 Improvements in Joomla 2.5"

Step 1: Download Joomla 2.5

Why would you want to install Joomla 2.5 manually? Maybe you run your own server or maybe your webhost has an auto installer for Joomla, but one that usually lag a few weeks to a few months behind the newest releases.

In this tutorial we will show you how to:

  1. Upload the files to the server. If you already know how to do this, you can skip steps 1, 2, and 3.
  2. Create a database for the installation. If you know how to do this skip steps 4 and 5.
  3. Go through the installation screens step by step with tips as we go.

Step 2: FTP the distribution to your web host


If you are using a commercial webhost, use and FTP program or the host's server control panel to upload the distribution to the server. In the illustration above you see Filezilla being used to upload the complete package to the public html folder on the server. On some servers this is actually called public_html or www and typical full server path to this directory looks similar to this /home/yourusername/public_html or on a Godaddy or shared server with shared directories it may be a bit longer. Like this /home/content/e/d/a/yourusername/html.


Alternately you can extract all the files on your local computer and upload all the unextracted files to your root html directory on the server.

Step 3. Extract the files on the server


If you used the first method in Step 2, uploading a compressed file to your server, then you need to uncompress it on the server. If you know how to use the command line on the server or putty you can use that to command the extraction. If you don't know what the command line is or how to use putty, just use the file manager.

The easiest method for most people is to use the file manager that comes with your hosting account. Check the documentation sent by your hosting company or contact them if you do not know how to get to your control panel.

Tip: Most CPanel servers allow access by going to For Godaddy servers you have to log in to your account, go to hosting accounts, click Launch, and then find the file manager.

Once in side your file manager you will see the file you uploaded. Somewhere on the page will be an icon or link for extraction. It may have a different label like inflate or uncompress depending on your server software. In the illustration above you see the cPanel file manager.

Step 4: Create a database for the site


On cPanel there are two ways, manually with the MySQL Databases icon or a little bit of a shortcut using the Database Wizard.


On GoDaddy go to Databases on the Hosting Dashboard and click the MySQL icon

Consult the documentation on you your hosting provider's web site or ask them for help if you can't find it..

Step 5: Be sure to record your data base information

You will need this info to fill in the data base connection when you go through the install screens. As you create the databases, be sure to record.

  1. The database name
  2. The database user
  3. The database user password
  4. The database host

It's a good idea to keep this for future reference.

On a cPanel server it will look something like this:

  • Host Name: localhost
  • Database Name: username_yourchoice (the username of your hosting account followed by an underscore, plus your description)
  • User Name: username_yourchoice
  • Password will be whatever you entered. Be sure you remember it.

On a Godaddy server it will look something like:

  • Host Name:
  • Database Name: sim101000001455
  • User Name: sim101000001455
  • Password will be whatever you entered. Be sure you remember it.

Step 6: Start the installation


In your browser, go to the URL for your site. You will see the installation Language page. Choose the language if you need to and click next in the upper right hand corner.

Step 7: Pre-Installation check


If any of the items in the first box say No in red letters. You'll have to correct those before you can go further. Most commercial servers are provisioned properly, but sometimes not. Godaddy allows you to install PHP4 when you set up your hosting. If PHP Version is 4, you should upgrade to 5.

Don't hold up the installation because of a few recommended settings not being as recommended. These are just recommendations and the site may still work fine.

If there are any red words in the Actual column of the recommended settings box, and you want to change them, we have some tutorials for dealing with those.Or you can ask a question in the forum and we'll guide you through the process. Joomla will still operate if you're settings are not quite right.

If you're happy with what you see, click Next.

Step 8: Accept the licensing terms


Click Next to accept.

Step 9. Set the Database Configuration

  • Database Type: Accept the default Database Type.
  • Hostname: usually local host, but on a Godaddy server it will be something like
  • Username: Enter the username of the database user you created when you created the database.
  • Database Name: Whatever you named it. Notice that in the illustration it shows a typical cPanel style database name with a prefix_.

Click Next.

Step 10: FTP Configuration


Most users can skip this step. Just click Next.

The only reason you would need to fill it in would be if you've previously had problems instaling extensions and templates on this hosting company. Here is how to fill in the data if you need to:

  • Enable the FTP layer: Yes
  • FTP username and password are the ones given to you by your hosting company. They would be the same as the ones you would use in Filezilla or any FTP client.
  • Autofind the FTP Path. Use this to fill in the FTP Root Path. It is most likely /public_html or /www or something similar unless you are in a subdirectory.

How do you know if you need to fill this in? Just leave it blank. If you have trouble uploading files or installing plugins, you will get an error message. You can always enter these values in the Global Configuration after you've installed Joomla.

Step 11. Main Configuration

  1. Enter a site name
  2. Click Advanced Settings - Optional to expose the advanced settings.
  3. Enter a Meta Description
  4. Site Offline: No or Yes
  5. Enter super administrator's email
  6. Enter and confirm the password you want to use for the super administrator.
  7. Decide on installing Sample data
  8. Click Next

Additional Settings:
This is new to Joomla 2.5. You can add your site's main meta description here for SEO purposes.
You now have the option to set the site online or offline during this step.

  • If it's online, you will see the published site when you visit the URL.
  • If it is offline, you will see a login screen when you visit the URL, and no one will be able to see the site without the username and password you set here.

Sample Data: It's useful if your brand new and exploring how things look and act in Joomla. If you're preparing a production site, you probably will not want to install it since you'll just have to delete all the content after installation.

Step 11. Remove the installation folder


Click the Remove installation folder button.

There is a folder in your Joomla root directory called install that contains all the files and instructions for doing an install. You can't get to your actual front page until this folder is missing.

Tip: Sometimes I just rename it in case I need to go through the installation again. That way if I decide I want to go back to the beginning I don't have to FTP everything again. I can just name the folder back to install and delete the configuration.php file and start over. Be sure to delete the installation folder when you are completely done and ready to publish. This would be unsafe to leave on a live site.


When you get the confirmation message, you can click on Site to visit the front end of your installation, or Administrator to get to the back end.

You will always be able to get to the administrator controls directly in your browser by going to


The finished installation showing the sample data.

Now the work begins. If you haven't already taken our new Joomla for beginners online or classroom training, review the online video tutorials and get up to speed on all the latest techniques for building and managing your Joomla site.