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It is very important to note that there are two sides to the upgrade:

  1. The actual Joomla upgrade
  2. The template upgrade

This tutorial is for the Joomla upgrade only and you need to make sure that your current template is either converted to 2.5 or that you have your new 2.5 template ready.  I assume the you have some Joomla experience and you have worked with extensions before. If not, I suggest you rather seek professional help with your migration. Make sure that all your extensions are 2.5 ready before migrating. Let's begin!

Step 1

The very first thing you need to do is update your Joomla 1.5 website to the latest security update (1.5.25 at the time of writing). Click here for the tutorial on how to update your site.

Step 2

Make a backup of your website.  The easiest by far is to use Akeeba backup. Once your backup is complete, proceed to step 3.

Step 3

We are going to use jUpgrade to migrate our website. You can download jUpgrade from here. Note that you need to register (for free) to download.

Step 4

Once you have downloaded jUpgrade, install it using the extension manager (Extensions -> Install / Uninstall).

jupgrade

Step 5

You need to enable the System - Mootools Upgrade plugin before you can use jUpgrade so navigate toextensions then plugin manager, do a search for the plugin and enable it.

mootools

Step 6

Navigate to Components then jUpgrade. You should see the following:

jpg

Click Start Upgrade. jUpgrade will now do the upgrade.  If everything goes well you will see the following upon completion:

jupgradedone

jUpgrade will conveniently create a new directory (default jupgrade) for your Joomla 2.5 upgrade. Click on Administrator and you will see your new Joomla 2.5 login screen. Log in and make sure all your content has successfully transferred. Remember, you may not see all your extensions because you will have to install the 2.5 supported versions.

This tutorial migrates Joomla in the best case scenario. You may pick up some errors or bugs. The best is to browse the official Joomla Forum, chances are that someone else has also experienced similar problems. If you can't find what you are looking for, post a new question and someone from the Joomla community will almost certainly assist!