I want to transfer about 300 articles from a Joomla 1.5 website to a Joomla 3.3.1 website.

I have access only to the Joomla 1.5 database but not to the backend (I have access to both for the joomla 3.3.1 website).

Because the table xx_content under Joomla 3.3 doesn't have the same structure/columns than the table xx_content under Joomla 1.5, I can't simply do a SQL query (both tables are in the same database).

So what is the recommended practices to do that?

My guess is: export the J1.5 xx_content to a csv and then modify it to reflect the structure of the J3.3 xx_content and then import it in J3.3 xx_content. But I wonder if there isn't something easier.

  • 3
    Just a note: If you have database access, it's not that hard to set up a new backend user or reset the password of an existing backend user.
    – Bakual
    Jul 10, 2014 at 14:28

2 Answers 2


What I would recommend you do is:

  1. Export the database for the Joomla 1.5 site, apart from the #__users table
  2. Install a fresh copy of Joomla 1.5 on your localhost
  3. Import the database dump you downloaded before

You should now have a fresh Joomla 1.5 site with all you content.

  1. Install redMIGRATOR which is a Joomla 1.5 extension that will migrate your site to Joomla 3.x
  2. Once your site has been successfully migrated, take a database dump of the #__content table.
  3. On your live Joomla 3 site that you said you have access to, import the database dump that you took from your localhost.

Hope this helps

  • That's a great idea! Thanks Lodder! I going to do that right now.
    – MagTun
    Jul 10, 2014 at 9:36
  • No worries, let me know how it all goes
    – Lodder
    Jul 10, 2014 at 9:37
  • I was about to start when I realized I had to edit all the fulltext entries so I did it via CSV, but if I didn't have to do it, I would I go with your solution! That would have been a safer and quicker way of doing it!
    – MagTun
    Jul 10, 2014 at 16:41

Finally, I've done the export/import via CSV (as I also had to edit all the fulltext entries) and here are the little things that I had to search for:

  1. export the Db via CSV, then edit it with Open Office Calc*
  2. edit the column so that they match the Joomla3.3 structure.
  3. set the column asset_idFK to O, Joomla will assign the correct value when you will open/save your article from the backend/frontend.

To encapsulate all the entries with "

  1. Still in Open Office Calc, format all the cells to text : CTRL+A, right click , check text
  2. Select Save As: CSV and check "edit filter settings"
  3. In the pop up, "keep same format" (don't choose ODT) and check: quote all text cells (cf. this question for screen shoot)

Escaped comma: I don't know why but Open Office replaces all the escaped comma \" by \"", so open the .csv with a text editor as Notepad++ and Find replace \"" by \"

  • I have tried to do it with Excel, but because I have special western characters, I ended up with a corrupted characters. But if you have to do it with Excel, add sep=; at the first line of the .CSV to tell Excel what are the separator.

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