Software installations are much like a recipe for an entrée or dessert. If you skip a step, it’s likely to come out all wrong. That’s what can happen with Joomla when people forget certain steps in the process.
Here are some of those missed steps with Joomla installation and how to get it right so it all comes together:
1. You ignore the words in red under Recommended Settings as you start the Joomla installation process.
While ignoring these red notations can end up being fine and Joomla will still work, there are many other times where that’s just not the case. In the midst of panicking when it doesn’t work, people tend to forget that they ignored the red lettering. It might be a good idea to open up Recommended Settings and revisit those, addressing one at a time to see if changing any of these makes a difference.
2. You don’t address Display Errors.
While it can be ignored during the installation process, you may want to turn Display Errors to OFF in the Global Configuration settings. Other options to address this issue is to modify the php.ini file or modify the .htaccess file. This can become very costly down the road if you're not paying attention.
3. When installing on localhost on your own computer, you don’t fix that Error Reporting is set to strict.
If you leave it set to strict, you will end up with a screen full of warnings, which doesn’t bode well for your installation process. Rather than addressing each warning, you can change the value under error reporting and turn display errors to OFF.
4. You don’t turn Output Buffering on.
This function helps your site to run more quickly than if you had it set to OFF. You will need to open your php.ini file and look for output_buffering and then change this value to ON so the buffer is unlimited.
5. You don’t switch off register_globals.
By leaving this on during installation and going forward, you put your site at risk due to the security vulnerability it creates. Again, you will need to get into your php.ini file and look for the line that says register_globals and change it from ON to OFF.
6. You forego increasing the PHP upload limit.
The result of skipping this step is that you experience problems later on when you try to install plugins or upload pictures to your site. The PHP upload limit should be increased to accommodate these files. Open your php.ini file and look for post_max_size so you can adjust it from its default value of 8MB. As well, seek out upload_max_file_size and change that from its default value of 2MB. While you are doing this, look for file_uploads and make sure it says ON because this may also have been prohibiting you from uploading files.
7. You don’t disable Magic Quotes so you keep getting the Magic Quotes error.
To disable these, you can change the values in your php.ini file or you can ask your hosting provider to manually turn it off for you. From there, you will need to go back to the Joomla installation screen and complete this process following the instructions it gives you at that point.
8. You don’t disable the safe mode.
You most likely didn’t do this because safe mode provides more defense against incoming problems and also provides stability for the system. However, safe mode is not compatible with Joomla, which then leads to further issues.
All you need to do to fix this missed step is edit your php.ini file by adding safe_mode = Off or alternatively, safe_mode = 0. If you can’t access your php.ini file, you can add a line to .htaccess that says php_admin_flag safe_mode Off or alternatively, php_admin_value safe_mode 0.
Each of these overlooked steps is an easy fix so you can make setting up Joomla much more successful.