27 February 2013 Last updated on 27 February 2013

We have been receiving reports about issues regarding updates to sites running old versions of PHP, Joomla! or Akeeba components. We have been able to reproduce and solve these issues. If you are affected, please read this page.

Nature of issues addressed in this article

If you tried updating to Akeeba Backup 3.7.0/3.7.1, Admin Tools 2.5.0/2.5.1, Akeeba Release System 2.1.0/2.1.1 or Akeeba Subscriptions 3.0.0 on these sites you may have observed one of the following issues:

  • The installation didn't go through, but you lost the icons under the Components menu for your installed version of the aforementioned components
  • You get a PHP error, blank page or 500 Internal Server error when trying to access the front-end or the back-end of your site
  • Your installed component doesn't work correctly

Some of those issues can be tracked down to Joomla! installer bugs, other are caused by a bug in our pre-installation script due to a misunderstanding in the (very undocumented) way the Joomla! extensions installer work triggered on sites running on PHP 5.2, some to a very old (obsolete and insecure) version of Joomla! 2.5 or because you updated our components in an order which triggers a PHP error in very old (more than 3 months old) versions of our components. Please let us repeat that the vast majority of sites are not affected by these issues. They only happen if you have a very old release of PHP, a very old release of Joomla! or a very old release of Akeeba components. Sites with up-to-date PHP, Joomla! and Akeeba components are definitely not affected. If you have an affected site, this page will tell you what to do to recover access to your site and do a successful update.

1. If your server is using PHP 5.2 and you cannot upgrade it to PHP 5.3

It suffices to re-install the older version of the components, namely (obviously you have to install only the components you are going to use on your site, not everything under the sun!):

  • Akeeba Backup 3.6.12
  • Admin Tools 2.4.4
  • Akeeba Release System 2.0.8
  • Akeeba Subscriptions 2.5.1

You will see the respective Akeeba component icons appearing in the Components menu again.

2. If your server is using PHP 5.3 but you get a blank page, PHP error or Internal Server Error 500

These issues can have a diverse source of root causes. The following instructions are an overkill in most cases but will solve all of the possible root causes.

Start by removing the following folders from your site:

  • libraries/fof
  • media/akeeba_strapper

If you have Admin Tools installed, also remove the following folders from your site:

  • plugins/system/admintools
  • plugins/system/atoolsupdatecheck
  • plugins/system/atoolsjupdatecheck
  • plugins/quickicon/atoolsjupdatecheck

If you have Akeeba Backup installed, also remove the following folders from your site:

  • plugins/system/akeebaupdatecheckls
  • plugins/system/srp
  • plugins/quickicon/akeebabackup

If you have Akeeba Subscriptions installed, also remove the following folders from your site:

  • plugins/system/asexpirationcontrol
  • plugins/system/asexpirationnotify

Now you have access to the back-end of your site and Joomla!'s extensions installer (Extensions, Manage).

If you have Joomla! 2.5.0 up to and including 2.5.5 you have to now install the old versions of our components first, namely (obviously you have to install only the components you are going to use on your site, not everything under the sun!):

  • Akeeba Backup 3.6.12
  • Admin Tools 2.4.4
  • Akeeba Release System 2.0.8
  • Akeeba Subscriptions 2.5.1

Then, please upgrade Joomla! to the latest published 2.5 version. At the time of this writing, the latest published version is 2.5.9. Do not skip this step! Then, continue to the next step about Joomla! 2.5.6 or later.

If you have Joomla! 2.5.6 or later install the latest versions of our components, in the following order (of course, you only have to install the components you want to use on your site, not necessarily all of them!):

  • Akeeba Subscriptions
  • Akeeba Release System
  • Akeeba Ticket System
  • Akeeba DocImport
  • Admin Tools
  • Akeeba Backup

VERY IMPORTANT! In order to work around a known intermittent issue in Joomla! we ask you to install each component twice, without uninstalling it between reinstallations.

3. Known issues

Please note that all issues which have to do with Joomla! installer bugs, old versions of PHP and old versions of Joomla! have been identified and addressed in the upcoming versions of our software which will be published on February 28th, 2013. The only known issues that cannot be worked around are:

  • Sometimes Joomla! forgets to copy all files in a package. This usually happens when upgrading from Core to Professional or when there is a major update in the component. The only workaround is to install each component package twice.
  • If you have many of our components installed and at least one of them is of a very old version (over 3 months old) you may end up with a white page, 500 Internal Server Error or a PHP error. We schedule our releases so that the previous minor versions of each of our components is compatible with the next minor version of other components, e.g. Akeeba Subscriptions 2.5.x is compatible with Akeeba Backup 3.6.x and 3.7.x. If you stick to outdated releases of our components we cannot guarantee that the update process will be smooth or even possible.


If you are not clear on any of the instructions in this article and you are a subscriber please file a support ticket. If you have constructive suggestions for improvement feel free to share them through our Contact Us form.

At this point we'd like to thank all users who have provided us with adequate information to identify the root causes of their reported issues and tested our instructions, as well as those who tested our proposed fixes in some cases by installing the dev releases on their sites.

Thank you for your understanding!