Help - VM Migrator

VM Migrator is a complete solution to migrate your old Joomla 1.5 / Virtuemart 1.1.9 website to Joomla 2.5 or Joomla 3.3 and Virtuemart 2.x or Virtuemart 3.x


  1. Install a fresh Joomla 2.5 or Joomla 3.3 website either locally or on the same server of your existing website
    If you decide to install on the same server, create an additional database and a subfolder to run the new Joomla instance.
    Installation instructions:
  2. Now download and install Virtuemart 2.6 or Virtuemart 3 or newer using the Joomla Installer
    Download link:
    We recommend to skip installing the sample data
  3. Download and install Virtuemart 2 Migrator using the Joomla Installer
    Download link:


  1. Click on the options button in the toolbar to open the component settings
  2. Start by configuring database access
    config databaseYou must enter here the information to connect to the Joomla 1.5/VM1.1.9 database
    Enter the tables prefix as it is defined in your old website. (jos_ by default)
  3. Configure file access
    If you decided to install the new website on a different server, use the FTP mode. However, the direct access to the files will be much faster, especially if you have a large number of images and products
    config ftp config pathIf you use the local files mode, enter the full path to the root directory of the old website.
    On most hosting, it will start with something like /home/your_account/public_html/
    Tip: Connect to your old website and get the full path to the temp folder from Jomla configuration page and remove the /tmp.

Testing connectivity

When you save your settings, you might see error messages, review your settings accordingly:

  • Unable to reach the source files path: review source file configuration settings
  • Unable to connect to database: review the database host, user name, password and database name
  • The database can be accessed but the Joomla tables could not be found. Check your tables prefix.: review table prefix
  • The extension was not found: make sure you properly configured the database access and that the related extension (such as Virtuemart) is installed and enabled on both source and destination websites

If the source database is on a remote server, make sure remote sql is enabled and that the new server can actually access the old server. This is usually disabled by default in your hosting CPanel.

If you don't see any of these message, you are goo to go.

Understanding the migration process

Start by carefully reading the disclaimer and important information before doing anything. Some important information is displayed there.
When you run the migration either for Joomla content or Virtuemart content, you will find these common steps:

  • Purge history: When you import a content, a log entry is inserted in the database. This will determine if the data should be imported or if it was already imported in a former import.
    When you enable this step, the import history will be flushed for the selected subsequent enabled steps. That mean the data will be imported again
    To be more clear, if you run the migration tool once, the order with ids 1,2,3 will be imported. If you stop the migration or run the migration again, the orders 1,2 and 3 will not be imported again unless you enable this step (or remove it manually from the migration history tab.
  • Reset data: When this step is enabled, the data corresponding to the subsequent enaled steps will be flushed on the new site.
    This means that if you enabled this step and the users step, all users will be removed before importing again. Make sure you enabled the purge history too!
  • Migrate now button: This will start the migration process for all the selected steps and you will see the progress in the progress bar and the log window.
  • Log window: a live status of what is being imported will show up there. You can filter the list to display only successfull migrations, warnings and errors.
  • Stop migration: Hit this button at any time and the migration will pause. You will be able to resume or restart with the purge history and reset data steps

Migrating content

Now unfold the Joomla section below to discover all the migration steps.

joomla stepsvirtuemart steps

This is pretty much self explanatory but mouse over the step to see if some additionnal information is displayed to help you decide if you want to enable the step or not.

Migration history

This page will show you all the migration log by extension and step.

migration history


You can delete one, several or all the records from there. Deleting a record will have a direct impact on what will be imported again in a future import. This has the same effect as the Purge history step but can be done for some specific records only

Additional manual configuration and Testing

Don't miss this step !

Both Joomla and Virtuemart introduced new functionalities in their latest releases. The migrator could not guess them for you based on your old website so you will have to review them manually.
Finally, test your website. You may have other work to do to finalize your migration and go live but you got much much closer !

Giving life to your new website.

Once your new website is fully migrated and tested, it is time to move it to a live server and replace your old website.
First of all, do a backup of your old website ! We recommend using Akeeba backup for that.
Then, you are ready to move your site. Take a look at this great tutorial on how to move a website using Akeeba Backup and Kickstart.