Easily Import or Export Articles Between Two Joomla Sites

One of issues of trying to upgrade your Joomla 2.5 site to Joomla 3 is experiencing "the White Screen of Death (WSOD)". The WSOD causes your Joomla site to stop working completely, and to display only a white screen, or a white screen saying that Joomla has encountered some error. This has happened to me on more than one ocassionally, and it's usually related to an extension or theme incompatibility.

In such a situation like this, you will be forced to manually move all of your content to a new Joomla website. Joomla has many great extensions to help you to migrate your content, but the one that's easiest to use, and that's completely free is J2XML. J2XML is a plugin that you install into Joomla, and once enabled, you can move articles, links, images and users by exporting your content into an XML file and saving it on your computer.

Step-by-Step Video Tutorial

This tutorial shows you how to use the extension J2XML to easily export articles, images and links from a Joomla 2.5 website and import it into a Joomla 3 site. You can also use the same process and extension for any Joomla 1.5.

1. Select the Right J2XML Version for your Joomla Site

With J2XML you will first need to install it into the both the source Joomla website - the content you want to export away from; and also in the destination website - the site you want to import the content into. There are two versions:

  • J2XML 3 is for Joomla 2.5 or 3x
  • J2XML 1.5, is the version you should download if you have a Joomla 1.5 site.

Once you select the right version for your Joomla site, now it's just a matter of intalling it by going into Extensions > Extensions Manager. Once the file is uploaded, make sure that you enable via the Plugin Manager.

2. Export the Article from your Source Joomla Website

After installing and enabling the J2XML plugin, you should see an additional button to allow you to export your articles in the Article Manager. All you have to do is to select the articles to export, click on the Export button and your articles, along with the author, categories and images will be exported as an XML file. You can even export trashed articles if you wanted to!

One of the benefits of using the J2XML Importer is that it retains the content ID's in your site's URL. This is very helpful for SEO, and for preventing "404 Page Not Found" errors when your users click on old links that appear on Google search results.

3. Import the XML file into the Destination Joomla Website

You can now import the XML file that was exported in step 2 into your new Joomla website.

To do so click on the Components > J2XML > Control Panel, than browse and upload your XML file.

Once your XML file has been imported, go to Articles Manager and you will see the imported articles and images from your old Joomla site.