Experienced WEB-developers more often began to use PHP-libraries and CMS for their projects. Therefore, they are valuable professionals, as they do their work faster and more efficiently.

The professional version of CodeLobster PHP IDE includes an excellent extension – a module for working with CMS Joomla.

Joomla provides convenient tools for managing the site, it makes it easy to add and edit content.

With it, you can create blogs, news portals and also e-commerce sites. Even large companies use this system for their developments.

Of course, it is possible to edit PHP or HTML files in any editor, but the built-in Joomla module expands the program’s capabilities and turns CodeLobster into a fully functional Joomla IDE.

As a rule, the development of a Joomla site begins with rather boring, but necessary steps:

  • Installing a content management system, for example, on a locally running server.
  • Creating and configuring the project in your IDE.

And only then, when a new empty version of CMS is installed, you can start designing a theme for your site or develop a module.

CodeLobster allows you to combine all the stages of project deployment and to make preparations for work directly in the IDE.

Getting Started – Creating a Joomla Project

Let’s start the local Apache HTTP server and MySQL database, for this I use the XAMPP suite – a very convenient set of programs for web developers.

That is all, now you can work in CodeLobster and nothing to worry about, we don’t even have to download CMS – the program will take care of everything.

Launch the IDE and go to the main menu, select “File” -> “New” -> “Project …” to open the New Project Wizard.


In the dialog box that appears, specify the project type “Create Empty Joomla Site”.

First of all, enter the name of the project “joomla-site” and choose the file path to it. Place the project in the directory “htdocs” of the local Apache server.

Enable the option “Create project in a new folder”. What was the result? Let’s examine the dialog box carefully.


The path to the project “D:\xampp-portable\htdocs\” – in this directory on the local server a folder will be created to host all the project source files.

The last line is the URL of our new site “http://localhost/joomla-site/”, we will use it for testing and debugging.

Click “Ok”. Next we will configure the new Joomla project.


In the first dialog box, IDE suggests us to choose the version of Joomla. Make your choice and click “Next”.


In the next step, you must enter the parameters for connecting to the database.

Enter the name of the database, which the IDE will create for us automatically, and also enter the user name and password to connect to MySQL.


Go to the next dialog. In this case, the advanced settings do not need to be changed, since the database server is running on the local computer.


Follow further. The Wizard offers to enter the credentials of the administrator of the new site.

Specify the user name, password, email address and click “Next”.


At the last stage, we will think up a name for our site and enter it into the first field. The remaining settings may be the default.

Click “Finish”.

The Wizard downloads the latest version of Joomla from the official website, unpacks the distribution, installs and configures the project and opens it in the programming environment.


Most often we have to work with the design of sites, so we will briefly consider the basic structure of Joomla templates.

By default, all themes are located in the “templates” folder. To create your own theme, you need to create a new folder in this directory and give it a name, “newjoomlatheme”, for example.

This folder must contain the files “index.php” and “templateDetails.xml” with a description of the parameters of your template.

Inside this directory, you also need to create the “images” and “css” folders, in the first folder you will place the pictures for the template, and in the second one you will store the CSS code.

The easiest and fastest way to learn the structure of Joomla templates is to practice in editing the themes that come with the CMS, and to see how they work.

Working with code in CodeLobster

To start editing the project, go to the “templates” folder, open the “beez3” -> “components.php” file.

To get a quick help on the functions, you just need to hover the cursor on the item of interest.


We have quick access to all the variables and functions of Joomla, this will speed up the development process and make it more comfortable.

To use code completion, set the cursor to the desired position and press Ctrl + Space. Next you need to select the function name from the drop-down list and press Enter.


CodeLobster IDE has a built-in help system that works depending on the context. You can quickly view the PHP function or the Joomla API documentation in your browser.

IDE will select the list of relevant links in the background mode. To open the documentation, go to the “Dynamic Help” tab on the right panel of the program.

Directly in the process of work, without being distracted and without leaving the development environment, you can use Dynamic Help if you need to obtain more accurate information about the parameters or return value of a function.

Place the cursor on the name of the function of interest and press the F1 hotkey, the help will instantly open in the default browser.

Let’s summarize

So, feel free to start to implement of your ideas, CodeLobster PHP IDE provides wide opportunities for creating professional sites on Joomla.

The program also includes other modules for using popular content management systems: Drupal, Magento and WordPress. Such advanced CMS are designed to launch whatever you want in the shortest time: a site, a blog, even an online store.

Frameworks are also supported, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel, use ready-made solutions: CakePHP, CodeIgniter, Laravel, Phalcon, Smarty, Symfony, Twig and Yii.

An interactive user interface for your WEB applications can be created using JavaScript libraries such as AngularJS, BackboneJS, EmberJS, JQuery, MeteorJS, and Node.js.

Surely, we will study the work with these popular tools in the following articles.

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