School website – The Joomla migration

School website – The Joomla migration

Some time in late 2004, I realised that it was simply impossible for my school to keep an up-to-date presence on the internet when all content was being channeled through one bottleneck – the webmaster! After examining available options (including the possibility of getting Macromedia Contribute!), the decision was made to migrate the website to a free, open source and surprisingly easy and simple to use content management system named Mambo.

Quite a bit has changed since. The original website themes, generously developed by an ex-colleague over weekends, have since been modified (or rather, clumsily hacked by yours truly) to draw attention to different parts of the site. After Mambo’s much publicised internal dispute, the school website  also transitioned to Joomla rather than staying with Mambo.

Today, slightly more than four years later, it has migrated again – from the Joomla 1.0 series to the Joomla 1.5 series.


Since  Joomla 1.5 has turned out to be less than 100% backward compatible with Joomla 1.0, I thought it might be helpful (to myself, and whoever else is using this as reference for site migration) to list out the alternatives I sought.

Here’re all the components and modules in use at the website, along with the alternatives used where an updated 1.5-compatible version is unavailable.

  • ArtioJOOMSEF -> sh404SEF (note: a 1.5-compatible version is available, but sh404SEF seemed more flexible)
  • DOCMan
  • FacileForms -> QContacts (we were using FacileForms only for the contact form with captcha built in)
  • GCalendar
  • JCE
  • Mambatstaff -> QContacts
  • My Content -> Camel City Content
  • PartyStaff -> QContacts
  • swMenuFree ->  not needed any longer with the built-in suckerfish menu of the new site template
  • Google Analytics -> J!Analysitcs
  • AJAX Header Rotator -> Simple Image Rotator
  • AllVideos Plugin -> AllVideos Reloaded
  • CalDate -> YouJoomla Date
  • Plugin GoogleMaps
  • NewsFlash Scroller Pro -> Simple Scrolling Newsflash
  • Multithumb -> Mavik Thumbnails (JUMultithumb is actually closer in functionality, but our site content editors needed more flexibility)

And in case you’re curious, the school website is right here.