Major Features and Improvements in Joomla 4

Joomla 4 is expected in the middle of 2018. The Joomla 4 alpha 2 has already arrived. Users are peeking at the amazing core functionalities and features introduced with Joomla 4. Joomla is gradually evolving from version 2, and now Joomla 4 is on its way with improved quality and features.

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So, let’s have a close loo at what to expect in Joomla 4 and how they compare with previous releases.

1. Installation is Much Simpler

Joomla 4 installation process is more simple and easier for a user to get it done. The sample data and multilingual installation is included in the "Customize installation" step. There can be more options to be added to the installation process like:

    Ability to install extensions (at minimum core supported extensions)
    Rework sample data installation

This is one of the core successes and an improved feature in JJoomla 4. Compared to other previous versions of Joomla, the installation process in Joomla 2.5 was complex. With Joomla 3, the installation was more simplified with a three-step installation process. It was relatively easy but the UI was not up to the mark. Now Joomla 4 overcomes each of these issues. Joomla 4 installation is much simplified and the interface is absolutely user friendly with a good outlook everywhere.

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2. Bootstrap 4 Integration

Bootstrap is the most popular HTML, CSS, and JS framework for building responsive, mobile-first projects on webs. Bootstrap 4 is a major rewrite of the entire project to make it even more powerful. Joomla 4 and its later versions will stay up-to-date with the latest Bootstrap version to prevent conflict and backward compatibility issues.

Bootstrap is a front-end library that contains HTML and CSS based responsive design templates for typography, forms, buttons, navigation and other interface components, as well as optional JavaScript extensions. Joomla 2.5 used Twitter bootstrap. Joomla 3 evolved Bootstrap 2 version. But now as Bootstrap 4 has been released, Joomla 4 has been being developed with Bootstrap 4. With the presence of Bootstrap 4, the whole process is now faster and more responsive than ever.

3. PHP version Improvements

Joomla 4 comes with improvement in PHP requirement.. As you may already know, in Joomla 2.5, minimum PHP requirement was 5.2.4+. From Joomla 3 the required PHP version is 5.3+. And from Joomla 4 the required minimum version will be PHP 7. This ensures a more secur and faster performance with a lot of new features in Joomla 4.

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4. Improvement in Code standards

Joomla 4 is a lot different from previous versions in terms of coding. Joomla 4 is developed staying more to the core, giving two times better stability. For better performance, some of the functionalities are rewritten with standard coding.

  • MVC layer improvement

Joomla 4 will restrict the duties of a component. So, a component is asked to only implement its own core functionality. Everything else is pulled out into the system. This is to help to make the extension more clean for coding. Developers will use “command bus” to oversimplify to extend the functionality where they have a single yet multitask controller.

  • Orthogonal Component Structure

There will be 2 kinds of components following the orthogonal system:

    Vertical: Weblinks, Contacts, Users, Content, ...
    Horizontal: Versioning, translating, tagging, commenting ...

This allows any component to take advantage of new capabilities that are designed to be used across extensions.

  • UI components using modern technologies

There will be a collection of components developed with the new W3C standard: custom elements. Each component uses plain and optimized java scripts for performance with clean and well-optimized HTML markup to give more benefit for developers. Generally, Joomla 4 code is much optimized and cleaner than both Joomla 3 and Joomla 2.5.

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5. New front-end template and back-end template

Joomla  4 will come with an entirely new frontend template as well as a new backend template. In Joomla 4 we will see 1 new front-end template: cassiopeia and 1 new back-end template: atum. Both templates integrates Bootstrap 4 and are responsive.

Compared to other pprevious versions, Joomla 2.5 had Beez 3 as the frontend template. In Joomla 3 there are two frontend templates.

6. Admin backend Improvements

There are great improvements in the backend configuration of Joomla 4 to improve performance and user friendliness. The system structure of admin backend is completely revolutionized in Joomla 4. In Joomla 2.5 and Joomla 3, the admin backend structure was not fully top notch when it comes to the question of user friendliness. But Joomla 4 admin backend has been redesigned, given a superb user friendly interface and holds accessibility features.

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7. Backend Improvements to Improve User Interface

The backend interface for Joomla 4 is improved to make it more friendly with users and easier to use. Back-end navigation is on the sidebar now with a collapsed option. When users click on 1 menu, the main one will be collapsed with icons to give space for the sub-menu bar.

Joomla 4 back-end responsive is also improved, it works faster and looks cleaner.

The backend template for Joomla 2.5 was Bluestork and Hathor. Bluestork was the default template. Joomla 3 backend template was Hathor and ISIS. The default backend template in Joomla 3 is ISIS. In Joomla 4, Atum is given as the backend template developed with Bootstrap 4 and SASS. Layout of the default template has been changed, now the whole menu is on the left side. Yes, it is similar solution as you might see in WordPress, it's nothing to be ashamed of!

As Bootstrap 4 is based on SASS (Syntactically Awesome Stylesheets), Joomla 4 had to integrate SASS. The previous version of Joomla used LESS. With the update, Joomla 4 ensures better performance.

8. Improvements in Responsiveness

Previous versions of Joomla did not offer a satisfactory and ultimate responsive performance. This is improved upon in Joomla 4. Template responsiveness of Joomla 2.5 and Joomla 3 is based on Bootstrap and Bootstrap 3. But the responsiveness of Joomla 4 backend and frontend templates is based on Bootstrap 4. The responsiveness of Joomla 4 is way better than the previous versions of Joomla.

9 New Media manager

Joomla 4 comes with a new media manager which will help users to manage their media files easier. They can structure the folder system and manage files easier. Users can also configure specific permissions for each user’s role.

Joomla 4 media manager is totally rebuilt and has some new features. The media manager in Joomla 2.5 and Joomla 3 misses a number of useful functionalities. Joomla 4 media manager offers several new features including drag-and-drop image uploading, image edition to help editing images (e.g. rename, crop, resize, rotate) via your Joomla backend instead of using other tools.

10. Mootools

Joomla 3.x has both Mootools and jQuery JavaScript libraries. But to avoid code conflicts and for better performance, Mootools will be completely removed from Joomla 4.

11.. Faster page loading times

This will be one of the best features to attract users to Joomla 4 because of its effect on site performance and ranking. Because Joomla 4 focuses on improving coding quality, using modern technologies, removing previously deprecated functionality, new rewritten plugin system, Dependency Injection Containers to replace JFactory, Joomla framework to be used in more components, Code Namespacing and Depreciation and more, it will help to improve performance a lot. This will turn out to be a ver attractive feature especially as page load time continue to be very relevant in the ranking of websites

12 Improved SEO Features

SEO is one of the most important parts of web development, In fact, if your website SEO performance is poor,, no matter how much effort you put in improving site attractiveness, you are not likely to get the best out of your efforts.
This feature is much more improved in Joomla 4. previous Joomla versions already supported lots of features to help improve SEO: Schema markup integration in most of the page types, heading structure, metadata fields, redirection ... In Joomla 4, it is indicated that SEO features is already listed on the to-do list and hopefully it will be ready in the stable version.

Final Words

Joomla 4 is clearly revolutionary and could improve the fortunes for Joomla, improving its user profile and popularity especially as it offers greater SEO and performance features. So, this is the comparison among Joomla 4 and its older versions. Joomla 4 is absolutely promising. With a smarter interface, better stability, 2x faster approach and ultimate security, we can say, the future is secure and full of advancements with Joomla 4.

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