How to upgrade jDownloads component from 1.9.1.x to latest 2.5 version?

Upgrading jD1.9.1.6 to jd2.5.x on Joomla! 2.5.28 (Recommended you go to Joomla! 3.x)

This article solely covers migrating jDownloads on Joomla! 2.5.x

Note: As jDownloads on  Joomla! 2.5 is no longer supported it is suggested you upgrade to the jD 3.2 series after upgrading to Joomla! 3.x as the process is slightly simpler. See the article From jD1.9.1.x on Joomla 2.5 to jD3.2 on Joomla 3.2+

An integral part of moving to the latest release is the ability to update the new 2.5 series of jDownloads (jD-2.5) with all the Download information from your existing 1.9.1.x series (jD-1.9).  This includes the categories, the files and all the supplementary information, such as the down load details, short and long descriptions, image files, layout files, and so on.  The imported jD-1.9 series layouts will have something like “(imported from 1.9.x)” appended to the layout name to distinguish them from the native jD-2.5 series versions.

We refer here to incorporating this information into the jDownloads 2.5 series as a 'data update'.  The jD2.5 series is packed with new user suggested facilities and represents a major upgrade.  An overview of the new features is given elsewhere.

Note that the new style jD2.5 series only operates on the Joomla 2.5 series.  A new jDownloads version, jD3.2 series, for the Joomla 3.x series is also available.

These instructions apply solely to users running on Joomla 2.5.x

To carry out this 'data update' it is essential you follow the straight forward step by step procedure detailed below.  It is even suggested that it may be useful to print out these steps and 'tick them off' as you go to minimise the chance of missing a step.

The detailed steps are given below.

  1. Make sure that you are using the most recently published version of jDownloads, currently this is version 1.9.1.6.  If you are not running this version then you need to first update to 1.9.1.6.
  2. Create a backup file with the jDownloads backup creation function.  This also saves backup tables in your database and that is why version 1.9.1.6 or higher is required.  Earlier versions of the jDownloads jD-1.9.1.x series may or may not make the backup in the same way. The default file name for the backup is backup_jdownloads_v1.9.1.6.txt.  Please note where this is located on your PC as it likely be needed later.
  3. The existing jD 1.9 series translation files are not compatible with the jD-2.5 series release.  Some older language files will be removed automatically when the 1.9 series is uninstalled; the remainder will be deleted during the jD 2.5 series installation and initialising sequence.  In the unlikely event you wish to make a copy of them for any reason you will find them in:
  • your-site /administrator/language/YOUR_LANGUAGE_PREFIX/com_jdownloads.ini
  • your-site /administrator/language/YOUR_LANGUAGE_PREFIX/com_jdownloads.sys.ini
  • your-site /language/YOUR_LANGUAGE_PREFIX/com_jdownloads.ini

Obviously if you do need to make any copies then that must be done before uninstalling the 1.9 series component.

  1. CSS files are also deleted when the existing 1.9.1.6 component is uninstalled.  The CSS file affecting the way items are displayed in the front end is the “jdownloads_fe.css” file.  The jD-2.5 version of “jdownloads_fe.css” has several additional styling items, that is the jD-1.9 series CSS file is effectively only a subset the jD-2.5 series CSS file.  If you have made changes to “customise” the look of jDownloads on your site then it would probably be helpful to make a copy of the existing CSS file as it will aid in making similar changes to the corresponding jD-2.5 series CSS file.  The jD-1.9 series file “jdownloads_fe.css” is located as shown below
  • your-site /components/com_jdownloads/jdownloads_fe.css

Should you do need to make a copy then that must be done before uninstalling the jD1.9 series component.

  1. The Layout files in the older jD1.9 series are not compatible with those in the jD2,5 & jD3.2 series.  If you have customised your layouts then you should make a copy of them as they will be overwritten during the migration process.  One way is to export the the database <prefix>_jdownloads_templates table using phpMyAdmin or similar, another is to find them in the jDownloads backup file.  Or of course you could copy them from the Layouts part of the jDownloads Control Panel.  If you need a copy it needs to be saved before starting the migration or uninstalling the 1.9 series component.
  2. Now there is currently one area where presently the conversion cannot be totally automated. This is related to where you have made links, typically by using a 'download button', to specific Downloads in articles or similar. These links use the id of the download.  Because downloads are almost certainly 'indexed' in a different sequence when they are re-created during the upgade then they will almost certainly have a different id in the new series to the one in the old series.  Sometimes you may not readily recall the name of the download that is associated with a specific id. This relationship between the download title and the old id are in the saved backup taken at step 2 above, specifically in table '<prefix>_jdownloads_files'. This is not the simplest file to examine but it can be made slightly simpler by copying the file and changits extension to csv and thgen importing to Excel or Calc.  If you have a large number of files the exporting just the table '<prefix>_jdownloads_files' using phpMyadmin in cPanel or its equivalent.  Of course if there are only a modest number of downloads then making image copies (screen shots) of the downloads in the Backend is a practical approach.
  3. Uninstall the 1.9.1.6 or higher version jDownloads Component first.  Joomla 2.5 users should use the Uninstall function available in the Extension Manager ‘Manage’ tab in Extensions.
  4. Uninstall all other installed jDownloads plugins and modules, again using the Uninstall function in the Extension Manager ‘Manage’ tab.  Tip: It may be helpful if you set the filter near the top left of the Manage page to say jDown as this will list just those items with jDown in their name.  The filter is not case sensitive.
  5. Do not delete the database items or the jdownloads and images/jdownloads folders and contents.
  6. Install the new jD 2.5 series jDownloads component. Get the new version zip file from here and then update using one of the Extension Manager Install methods.
  7. As part of the install and initialising, the jD 2.5 series component will delete any remaining jD 1.9 series language files as those older ones are incompatible with the jD 2.5 series translations.
  8. After installing the current jD 2.5 series version please read the instructions shown in the jDownloads control panel.  Specifically a super user has to create default access permissions to the jDownloads component for the Joomla User Groups before the initialising process being carried out by jDownloads can complete.  These access permissions determine which user groups can make Downloads, carry out relevant administrative functions such as creating Categories and similar activities. It is of course possible to modify these access permissions later. If you would like more information see jDownloads ACL Notes.
  9. After setting the Joomla access permissions jDownloads will show two links: one that will incorporate the previous Download information, complete with categories, downloadable files, and so on, into the new version; and one which will allow you to skip this stage.  This option is only offered the first time so in normal circumstances it would be very wise to use the incorporate link.
  10. After completing the data update please check the update results messages shown on the jDownloads control panel.  These are also stored in the file your-site/administrator/jdownloads_update_log.txt
  11. If you are satisfied with the data update then please use the 'Delete all backup tables' in the jDownloads Tools section.
  12. If you have any links in articles or similar then these need to be remade manually - see step 5 above.
  13. Any additional standard jDownloads modules and plugins are automatically uploaded and installed with the new jD 3.2 series.
  14. You may also need to visit the Menu Manager to re-enable any menu links.  This is because Joomla! may disable links associated with a component when it is uninstalled. Rightfully Ii does not re-enable them when the component is re-installed as it cannot know that it is the 'same' one.  This does not occur during regular update.
  15. If you are using any Language packs then also remember to load those as well.  These will also be available in the Download area in www.jdownloads.com .  Do not use jD 1.9 series versions of the languages.

Actually you can carry out this step at any time after completing Step 7 above but we would advise doing this step after completing the data update.

Please note that with this new release translators are only just beginning their work so there may be a time gap before your language is available. Maybe you could offer to assist in doing a translation, as they say “many hands make light work”!

Version 1.3

25 January 2015

Colin Mercer

  • Tuesday, 18 March 2014