logo-joomla-2009.png Only four weeks after Yireo announced the release of MageBridge v1.0, a suite of extensions that binds Magento, an open source ecommerce platform, and Joomla!, it has announced the release of MadgeBridge v1.1

For those who were on vacation, MadgeBridge was released on July 23 and offers users full integration of the Magento application inside the Joomla! (news, site) content management system.

At the time of that release, they promised they would work on the Joom!Fish and Nooku components, which they have, and which has resulted in v1.1. V1.1 includes a number of bug fixes for v1.0 as well as support for the multilingual features. And then there's the question of whether it will be compatible with Joomla! 1.6.

MageBridge For Joomla!

Magento provides online stores with out-of-the-box features like one-page checkout, product comparisons, multi-address shipping and many other commercial features.

And if you needed any introduction, Joomla! is a web content management system, which enables users build websites and powerful online applications.Joomala_magebridge_config_2009.jpg
Joomla -MageBridge configuration

Essentially, what MageBridge does is enable Magento user integration with Joomla! 1.5, which includes the ability to display Magento content within the Joomla! component-areas, as well as integrating with search and plugin-events.

MageBridge v1.1

And while the new multilingual support with connectors for both Joom!Fish and Nooku included in the MageBridge core is its most notable feature, it also comes with a number of other features that will be of interest too.

These include:

  • Bidirectional API: v1.0 bridge only worked if it was called from within Joomla! With v1.1 Magento also replicates changes back to Joomla!
  • Event forwarding has undergone considerable upgrading mostly to increase performance
  • Easy upgrade to MageBridge v1.1 using the update-pages in both Joomla! and Magento
  • Joomla! backend allows more control over JavaScript scripts and CSS stylesheets.

Joomla! MageBridge backend

MageBridge For Joomla! 1.6

But this not the end of it. The roadmap for MageBridge flags the release of v1.2 in October that includes a number of other upgrades. More importantly it notes that v2.0 will be released when the final version of Joomla! 1.6 is released.

So will it work with Joomla!1.6 we hear you ask? Well, the answer appears to be yes -- with a bit of tweaking. 

The problem is that while the code for Joomla!1.6 has yet to be finalized, the alpha version is showing that it is not backward compatible with Joomla!1.5. According to Yireo, Joomla! 1.6 uses the same component-architecture as Joomla! 1.5, but some specific implementations are different.

MageBridge Modifications Required

And this is where the problem for MageBridge lies. It basically means that MageBridge for Joomla!1.5 will not work with Joomla! 1.6 – unless of course you modify it.

In particular, MageBridge uses an XML-RPC protocol (a remote procedure call protocol which uses XML to encode its calls and HTTP as a transport mechanism) to exchange messages between Magento v1.1 and Joomla! 1.5. This will be replaced in Joomla!1.6 with a web services implementation in MVC.

There are a number of other issues listed that would seem to suggest that while ultimately MageBridge will be compatible with Joomla! 1.6, it will only manage this with some changes. These changes have already been written into the roadmap.

MageBridge v1.1 is available from the Yireo shop and will cost €195 for one Magento domain and up to five Joomla domains. You also get tutorials with this.