We are happy to announce that we launched a new Joomlashack design this week.
In Joomlashack we strive to keep things simple. So we aimed at making the new design as minimalistic as we possibly could.
In this blog post, you will learn what the new design is, and what changes you'll see as a Joomlashack user. We'll also explain how we executed the redesign with only five minutes of downtime.
You will find the new design really focused on simplicity. No fancy features. Just a lightweight layout that works great for all devices, from mobiles to desktops.
The New Template
The template we built for the new design was based on our own Wright framework. We use it for all our Joomla templates here at Joomlashack.
We have 20 templates in our commercial catalog. All of them are built on the Wright framework, which makes it possible to create designs that are easy to maintain and customize.
Wright is based on the same Bootstrap version that shipped within the Joomla 3 core. This means better compatibility and fewer problems when using third-party extensions. If you want to learn more about Wright, there's a free video class here.
We named the template that made this new design possible Uyuni. We took its name from one of the most attractive and popular places in the world "Salar de Uyuni", located in Bolivia.
The Color Scheme
The new design color scheme is based mainly on three colors, using green as the primary color.
- Green for backgrounds and regular buttons.
- Purple for backgrounds.
- Yellow for important buttons.
The new template relies on the Roboto font. This is Sans Serif font is highly popular amongst front-end designers: the Google Fonts Page has it in first place. Roboto is a really strong alternative to Helvetica.
Our main goal for the redesign was to make it easier for you - the user. In the previous version of Joomlashack.com, it wasn't easy enough to find all the key information about extensions and templates. This new redesign gathers all this information in the right sidebar: Demo, Documentation, Support, Version Information, Changelogs, Requirements.
Switching to the New Design
This was the most fun part of the whole process. We wanted to avoid taking the site down for a long time, so we worked hard to make sure the changeover was fast.
Firstly, we packaged the new design as an installable Joomla template. Then we did some pretty extensive testing to make sure the template works as we planned.
Then we ran the switch from the old to the new design. This part was the quickest but also the most sensitive step.
Here is the outline of the process, from planning to execution.
- Switch Joomlashack.com to offline mode: System > Global configuration > Site Offline > Yes.
- Install the new template: Extensions > Manage > Upload package file.
- Set the new template as default: Extensions > Templates > js_uyuni.
- Choose the template settings: Extensions > Templates > js_uyuni.
- Import the custom SQL script to implement critical changes to the site's modules, articles, menu items and other content assets. We rewrote the HTML for many of these items.
- Run fixes using the ACL Manager extension. This was required to fix any issues generated from the custom SQL script from the previous step. We use ACL Manager to fix missing records from the
#__assetstable in the database.
- Use the Rebuild feature in ACL Manager component.
- Use the Rebuild feature in Menu Manager component.
- Clear Joomla cache: System > Clear cache.
- Switch Joomlashack back to live mode: System > Global configuration > Site Offline > No.
The whole process, from switching Joomlashack.com offline to re-launching it live, took us about five minutes. Good planning, preparation, and testing did pay off.
We did our best and don't expect any major issues caused by the new design. However, a glitch here and there may occur. Our focus is now on closely monitoring the entire site and fixing any possible problems caused by the update.
We'll continue making Joomlashack your favorite place for Joomla extensions, templates and books.