Joomla 3.6.2 Fixes and Updating Explained

Between August 3rd and 4th, the Joomla project put out 2 new releases for the 3.6 series and 3 blog posts explaining the changes and how to update. The rapid fire changes may be confusing, especially when reading through the announcement posts that talk about CSRF, PHP versions, security issues with different levels and other details. If you're unsure what to do, read on for a general overview of the updates and a step-by-step guide on how to update.

As described in our Joomla 3.6 Overview, the main feature of the 3.6 series was the improved Joomla restore ability and other subtle, though awesome, improvements. However, most of the changes in the 3.6.1 and 3.6.2 weren't really due to the 3.6.0 release, but for general bug and security fixes that have affected Joomla for a long time.

Should You Update?

Yes, you should. Without deep-diving into each issue, the 3.6.2 release contains:

  1. Security fixes - Enough said. Any security fix is important enough to upgrade for.
    • No critical issues, but any vulnerability can be combined with others to become worse.
  2. PHP Compatibility Updates for PHP 7.0.9 and higher or PHP 5.3.
    • You may not use 7.0.9 or higher yet, but you (or your host) could upgrade at any time
  3. Email Cloaking fixes - If you have user generated content or show emails on your site, you should use this plugin, and apply this update.
  4. Other minor bug fixes, like updating the TinyMCE editor and some language fixes

If the only changes were #3 or #4, you'd be forgiven if you don't update immediately. The security and PHP fixes make this an no-brainer, "you should update" answer.

How To Update to Joomla 3.6.2

Well, here's the million dollar question. Joomla 3.6.1 introduced some new security checks for the update component. Those security additions make upgrading more difficult, which is part of why 3.6.2 was released and two follow-up blog posts explaining things were released.

Here's the steps we'd recommend to follow if you haven't updated to Joomla 3.6.2 yet, regardless of what version you are currently on:

  1. Go to Components -> Joomla Update and check for a new release
  2. Install the latest release available
    1. If 3.6.0 was just installed, and 3.6.2 (or higher) is shown as available, do not try to update right now.
  3. Go to Extensions -> Manage -> Update
  4. Click the "Find Updates" button.
  5. Install any updates to the "Joomla! Update Component Update", if found.
  6. Go to Components -> Joomla Update and check again for a new release
  7. If 3.6.2 (or higher) is available, install it
  8. Go to Extensions -> Manage -> Database
    1. If you see a warning, click the "Fix" button in the top

That's it! It may sound like a lot of steps, and there's many reasons for each, but that's the simple flow of how to upgrade. If you get stuck or confused, just start again at #1. You can't hurt anything by redoing the steps over and over, you'll just have more steps you can skip as there won't be anything to update.

Updates Are Important

As always, Joomla updates are important. Frankly, even if there aren't security fixes in some release, you should update anyways. Making small incremental updates (3.6.0 to 3.6.2) is better than huge jumps from one minor version to the next (3.4 to 3.6).

This release wasn't the smoothest for Joomla, but it's essential to upgrade to it. Hopefully the above helped give a condensed guide to the why and how to do so!

References

Alex Andreae

Alex co-founded SourceCoast Web Development in 2008. Based in sunny Florida, SourceCoast develops extensions for integrating your Joomla powered website with popular social networks. He has spoken at more than a dozen Joomla User Groups and Joomla Days, including the Joomla World Conference in both 2012 and 2013. Topics have included social networking for Joomla, running a business around Joomla extensions, and Joomla development.


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