Thanks for using Joomla and Joomlashack.
In January, February, and March, we posted a round-up of news from around the Joomla community. You told us this was useful, so we're back again for April! Here's our guide to what's interesting in Joomla right now.
I try to post one of these helpful items every day in the Joomlashack Facebook group, so join if you do want daily Joomla updates.
Goodbye to PHP 5?
It looks like the Joomla community continues moving to PHP 7 as a minimum requirement. Peter from Regular Labs is dropping PHP 5.6 support on his extensions and so have other developers. Here at Joomlashack we're not quite ready to make that move and still support 5.6 on most extensions, but we definitely recommend updating your hosting to PHP 7.
Encouraging progress with Joomla 4
I am often wrong, but I think a Release Candidate for Joomla 4 is close. Four items that are labelled "release blockers" and 2 of those have proposed code solutions. There's still a lot of work to move Joomla 4 from Release Candidate to stable release, but it's great to see the progress.
OSCampus has a new certificate designer
OSCampus is the best way to build an online training site with Joomla, and now the extension has a new and powerful drag-and-drop designer for certificates. This is a great way to reward your users when they finish a class. You can create as many certificates as you need, and then assign them to different classes.
Customizing your Joomla 4 dashboard
This is a really good Joomla 4 article from Patrick Jackson. He shows how easy it is to customize the admin dashboard for yourself or clients. You can add modules to the dashboard in just a couple of clicks.
Use links to automatically fill your forms
Imagine that you create a link that says "Click here to book a trip to London". When your visitor clicks the link, they go to your booking form and "London" is already selected in the form. This sounds pretty awesome, right? It makes things really easy for your visitors and increases the chance that they will buy from you. Here's how to do it in Joomla:
Video introduction to Watchful
If you’re a web designer who manages more than two or three websites, you know how time-consuming that can be when updates come out for core or extensions. Add to that backups, site scanning, installing software, etc., it can get pretty frustrating! Rod Martin has a new video on using Watchful to do all this with your Joomla sites.
Joomla protects your privacy from Google
Joomla is going to block Google's new "Federated Learning of Cohorts" feature. Essentially, this is Google's newest way to track you. Mozilla, Microsoft, Opera, WordPress and more have already started blocking.
Add custom CSS to specific Joomla pages
HD-Custom CSS is a simple but very useful module that allows you to add CSS styles to individual Joomla pages. Without editing your template files, this extension makes it possible to quickly and easily apply CSS changes.
Video intro to Joomla 4 workflows
Thanks to Tim Plummer for this excellent intro to the new workflow functionality in Joomla 4. The first 25 minutes are a very clear explanation of the basic workflow features. Then Tim dives into some more advanced and interesting areas I hadn't considered before.
A beginners guide to Joomlatools Pages
Marc Dechevre made a presentation at JoomlaDay USA about a new way to create overrides that include custom fields and data from external sources. Marc recommends using Joomlatools Pages. Marc included a complete demo and lots of useful resources in his talk.
How to pin Joomla articles
This is a neat explanation from Daniel Dubois, showing how to pin a Joomla article to the top of a blog page. This allows you to keep posting new content, but keep your most important information in easy view.
Other Joomlashack updates
Here are other updates and tutorials from the Joomlashack team in April: