How to manually install Joomla!

When it comes to installing Joomla! on your HostPapa account, you have a couple of options. The quickest and simplest way is to use the Softaculous App Installer, which is described in How to install Joomla! with the Softaculous App Installer. However, if you want to customize your installation or you’re the sort of person who likes to dig in to the technical details, you can also install Joomla! manually.

Manual installation includes four general steps:

Download the installation files

Open the Joomla! download page in your web browser and click the Download button to download the compressed (.zip) installation file to your local computer. Note the name and location of the downloaded file as you’ll need to find it in the next step.

Upload the installation files

Log in to your HostPapa Dashboard. Click My cPanel and then File Manager.

Select the directory that will be the root directory for your Joomla! website. In most cases this will be public_html, but it will differ if you want to install Joomla! in a subdirectory. In this example, we’re installing in a subdirectory called Joomla. Click Upload.

Locate the compressed installation file you downloaded from the Joomla! website and drop it in our browser, or click Select File and browse to the file.

When the upload is complete, return to the File Manager. Select the compressed installation file and click Extract. In the Extract dialog box, click Extract File. After the files are extracted, you should see several files and subdirectories in the root directory for your Joomla! site.

You can now close the File Manager and return to cPanel.

Create the MySQL database

Now we’ll create a MySQL database and database user for the Joomla! site. In the Databases section of cPanel, click MySQL Database Wizard.

In Step 1: Create A Database, enter a name for the new Joomla! database. The database name is automatically prepended with your HostPapa username and an underscore (_). In our example, we’re calling our database joomladb. Click Next Step.

In Step 2: Create Database Users, create a username and password for the database. Ensure that you choose a strong password that you’ll be able to remember, or keep a record of it in a secure place. Click Create User.

In Step 3: Add user to the database, select ALL PRIVILEGES and click Next Step.

In Step 4: Complete the Task, click Return Home to close the MySQL Database Wizard and return to cPanel. You can now log out of your HostPapa Dashboard.

Install the Joomla! application

In your web browser, open your website at the location where you uploaded and extracted the Joomla! installation files. For example, if you uploaded the installation files to the root of your website, go to In our example, we extracted the files in a subdirectory called joomla, so we’ll go to The web-based installer will start on the Configuration tab.

On the Configuration tab, complete the following fields, then click Next.

  • Select Language – If the correct language wasn’t automatically selected, select the language from the dropdown list and click Next.
  • Site Name – Enter the name of your Joomla! site.
  • Description – Enter a short description of your site.
  • Email – Enter the email address of the site admin user.
  • Username – Enter a username for the site admin user.
  • Password – Enter a strong password for the site admin user.
  • Confirm Administrator Password – Re-enter the site admin user password.
  • Site Offline – Select Yes to keep the site front-end offline after installation. You can later put the site online by changing the setting in Global Configuration.

On the Database tab, you’ll enter the details for the database you created in the MySQL Database Wizard.

Complete the following database details, then click Next.

  • Database Type – Select MySQLi.
  • Host Name – Enter localhost.
  • Username – Enter the database username.
  • Password – Enter the database user password.
  • Database Name – Enter the name of the database you created for your Joomla! site.
  • Table Prefix – Leave the default table prefix.
  • Old Database Process – If you previously had another Joomla! installation that used the same table prefix, choose Backup to back up the old database tables before they’re replaced with the new tables.

On the Overview tab, choose whether to install sample data. If you’re just starting out with Joomla! installing sample data can be helpful for learning about site structure and design. Confirm the configuration and make sure all of the pre-installation check and recommended settings are correct. Click Install to start the installation.

When the installation is finished, you’ll see a success message. Before you continue, click Remove installation folder to delete the installation files.

Joomla! is now installed! You can now click Site to view your site and any sample data you’ve installed or click Administrator to log in to your Joomla! back-end. For information about how to set up Joomla!, see How to set up Joomla! after installation.

More information

For more information about Joomla!, see Beginner’s Guide to Joomla! and Getting started with Joomla! in the HostPapa knowledge base.

If you have any questions or need help, you can always contact HostPapa Support by opening a support ticket. Details about how to open a support ticket are here.

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