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How to Access

Select Extensions → Template Manager from the drop-down menu on the back-end of your Joomla! installation.


The Template Manager is where you assign a default Template to your Joomla! web site. You can also edit and preview Templates here.

In Joomla!, the visual layout of both the Front-end and Back-end of your site is controlled by the Template. Templates are extensions that contain layout and style information that tells Joomla! exactly how to draw each page of your site.

When you first install Joomla!, one Back-end Template and two Front-end templates are included. Other Templates can be installed from third-party developers as Extensions.

If you want to use the same Template for all of the pages on your site, you just assign one Template as the Default Template. You can also assign different Templates to different pages.


Template manager.png

Column Headers

  • #. An indexing number automatically assigned by Joomla! for ease of reference.
  • Template Name. The name given to each Template by the Template author. Click the Name to open the Template for editing. If you hover the mouse over the Template Name, a small preview for the Template displays in a pop-up window. The Template Name normally corresponds to the sub-directory name that contains the Template in the <path-to-Joomla!>/templates/ directory. For example, the files for the "rhuk_milkyway" Template are in the directory "<path-to-Joomla!>/templates/rhuk_milkyway".
  • Default. Indicator of Default Template.
  • Assigned. Shows whether this Template has been assigned to any specific menu items. To assign a template to menu items, open the Template for editing.
  • Version. The version number of the Extension.
  • Date. The date this extension was released.
  • Author. The author of this extension.


At the top right you will see the toolbar:

Template manager toolbar.png

  • Default. Select the Template that you want to be the default Template. Then click this button. The default star symbol will show in the Default column, indicating that this is now the default Template.
  • Edit. Select one item and click on this button to open it in edit mode. If you have more than one item selected (where applicable), the first item will be opened. You can also open an item for editing by clicking on its Title or Name.
  • Help. Opens this Help Screen.

List Filters

Quick Tips

Important: Do not delete the default template files using FTP because it generates an error both front-end and back-end!

Before editing the HTML and the CSS file of the template, it is a good idea to make a backup of the file you are editing.

The Preview will only display positions that contain published modules. To make sure you can see all positions defined in the template, you can create custom modules for them.

You cannot assign the default template to specific menu items.

Quick Tips

You can switch between the already installed templates for the Site and the Administrator by selecting the desired template and clicking on the Default toolbar icon on the upper right part of the screen.

Related Information

The templates listed in the Template Manager can be installed in the Extension Manager from Extensions -> Install/Uninstall menu item. The unnecessary templates can be removed on the Templates tab of the Extension Manager. Only those templates that may be uninstalled are displayed as accessible, the default templates (site and administrator) cannot be removed.

Template - Edit




Typical Usage

If you hover over the name of the template, a thumbnail image of that template is displayed. Clicking on the template name will present the template configuration screen, which provides all the basic details of the template. Parameters available for configuration appear in the Parameters pane.

Screen templates edit 15.png

Template HTML Editor

Clicking the Edit HTML button will display the basic text editor, which was designed to allow minor adjustments.

Screen templates edit html 15.png

Template CSS Editor

If you click on the Edit CSS button on the template screen, the text editor will be displayed with the style sheet file of the template. For a template with multiple style sheets, you can select which one to edit.

Screen templates edit css 15.png

Template Site Preview

If you are curious about the available module positions, click the Preview button on the toolbar and the site front-end will be loaded showing you the available positions.

Screen templates preview 15.png

Note: The preview of an administrator template does not show you the administrator module positions.