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Must have Component - Xmap - Dynamic Sitemap Generator for Joomla!

Joomla Xmap Logo

Search engines like Google and Bing want us to submit sitemap file in webmaster tools so that they can use it to crawl and analyze our website. If you still have pure HTML based website during 90's and early 00's, most likely you have to run sitemap generator software from PC, crawling and collecting urls from your web pages and save into a sitemap file. The major problem is you need to generate new sitemap file every now and then when you update your website, then upload to webmaster tools.

With Joomla, you can use Xmap, a free component created by Guillermo Vargas since Joomla 1.x, to re-generate dynamic sitemap automatically so that you can totally forget about sitemap file after initial setup. Xmap creates sitemap based on the structure of menus in your Joomla website. You can add or remove menus anytime and Xmap will dynamically generate sitemap accordingly with additional metadata. You can also create any number of sitemaps with different options. However, Xmap also comes with poor documentation and poor support, as you can see from JED comments. If you encounter any problems, you need to search the solution from forums, just like Xmap was not functional in recent Joomla 3.2 upgrade.

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JCE Text Editor - Must Have Component in Joomla

jce logo

The standard text editor in Joomla since 1.5 until 3.x is TinyMCE. It has all the basic functions you need to write content (text and images) and publish your blog. In fact, text editor is one of the most important components in Joomla. The TinyMCE editor is like a simplified word processor and with limited features.

However, I am very used to a third party text editor, JCE - Joomla Content Editor, which is a much better text editor than TinyMCE. I am using JCE in all my websites. Furthermore, JCE is FREE, so you should give it a try.

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How to Install Joomla 3.x on Local Windows PC using XAMPP for Website Development

Install Joomla with XAMPP

If you want to create a new website, you don't have to immediately register a domain name and buy a website hosting plan.

1) You might change your plan later and find that the domain name not suitable to your content.

2) You can complete the website development and release to live server after fill up with substantial contents.

3) You can show to your customers from your PC how the website works without connection to Internet and etc.

Assuming you already have XAMPP (if not, you can find the installation guide here), you can easily install Joomla to your local Windows PC and develop your website before release to internet. Here, I am using Joomla 3.1.5 as example. You can actually install Wordpress, Drupal and many types of PHP/MySQL related program with the same steps. Remember to turn on XAMPP on your PC.

Go to Joomla website to get the latest version of Joomla CMS. Select Download button. The current version is 3.1.5 as of this point. 

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My Joomla Experiences

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I had my first website (an online shopping store) in 2005. It was written in ASP programming language by a small company with three young programmers. It was a complete online shopping system at that time, with a simple CMS, shopping cart, checkout system and payment via Paypal. I was able to upload products and articles through backend interface.

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