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I have a Joomla installation, version 3.5+, but I cannot update, no matter what I tried. I tried to use the Joomla Update component, tried to upload the package, it just doesn't work.

I then tried to extract the package on the root directory, and it broke my site.

How can I manually update it?

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Many posts around say that you shouldn't manually update Joomla 3.5+. And there are various reasons that this is good advice.

However, you can manually update Joomla 3.5+ to the latest version (currently 3.8.8).

1. Backup first

First, you need to have a good, working backup of your current site. Things may go wrong.

2. Login to administrator

It's important to have an active session in the site's administrator, while it is still working, or step 4 may not work.

3. Extract the files

You can download the latest Joomla upgrade package, either from your Joomla Update component (Components > Joomla Update), or from downloads.joomla.org.

Rename your libraries directory to libraries-old.

Place the package you downloaded in the root directory of your site. Extract.

If you open your front-end, and get an error, or a blank page, you can try to rename the libraries directory again, to libraries-broken and copy a libraries directory directly from the latest version full package.

4. Fix Database

If you have done well so far, your administrator should be broken. If not, hurray! Go to Extensions > Manage > Database and click the Fix button.

If your administrator is broken, copy the following link after your site's administrator URL:

[your site]/administrator/index.php?option=com_installer&view=database&task=database.fix

If you click that link, the database should be automatically fixed, and your administrator will be usable again. Click Fix one more time.

Your site should now have the latest Joomla version. If you still have problems with it, you may need to update third-party extensions, or similar.

  • You can often install the update packages through the installer too. Which is not manually, but if the auto updater is not working that might still be a solution for you. – Eoin May 26 '18 at 11:35
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    I thought that it would work that way too, but when I tried it and also got the Ajax loading error, I decided to write what I found here. – mavrosxristoforos May 26 '18 at 15:24

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