How to override the output from the Joomla! core

Posted on 22 September 2011 by

Joomla Documentation

There may be occasions where you would like to change the way a Joomla! Extension (such as a Component or Module, whether from the Joomla! core or produced by a third party) is displayed on your site. Of course, you could recode the Extension from scratch, but that may be a bit ambitious for you! Thankfully, there is another way.

The standard output from any Joomla! Module or Component can be overridden by adding code to the html directory of your template. It is also possible to override two aspects of core functionality: Module chrome, and pagination.

Getting a head-start with overrides

If you are new to Joomla! development, then it is probably easiest to start with an existing view, and try modifying it to get what you want. To do this, you should make a copy of the existing view in the html directory of your template, and then modify the copy.

The directory structure you need is:

TEMPLATE_NAME/html/EXTENSION_NAME/VIEW_NAME/FILE_NAME.php

For example, if you want to change the way that the ‘Article‘ view displays a com_content article, then you should copy the file at

PATH_TO_JOOMLA/components/com_content/views/article/tmpl/default.php

to

TEMPLATE_NAME/html/com_content/article/default.php

(note the slight difference in directory structure)

Similarly, if you want to change how the mod_login Module is displayed, then you should copy

PATH_TO_JOOMLA/modules/mod_login/tmpl/default.php

to

TEMPLATE_NAME/html/mod_login/default.php

Joomla! comes pre-packaged with a frontend template called Beez. Beez utilizes template overrides to produce a table-less layout for faster, smoother, and semantically correct markup. To see how it’s done, locate your Joomla! installation’s template directory, and you’ll notice the Beez template. Inside the Beez template directory, you’ll find a directory named html

the entire directory structure is as follows:

/your_joomla/templates/Beez/html/

If you want to try modifying the overrides used in Beez, you could simply copy and paste the Beez html directory into your own template’s main directory. However you choose to make your override files, you will need to ensure that they are correctly installed with your template. To do this, you should add the following code to your template’s templateDetails.xml file (in between the and tags):

html

The above code in essence lets the Joomla! package installer know that there are files to extract, and that they are part of the template as a whole.

Joomla! Documentation

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