The Joomla! Extensions Directory ™


byjeremyD, May 15, 2014
I've always been impressed with VM as one of the best e-commerce systems around, and VM2 continues to impress. Having been a user since it was Mambo-shop, I've seen how it's developed over the years.

With the experience of multiple sites built using v1.0 and 1.1 it was a bit disorientating switching over to the Joomla MVC model from the old themes approach, but having now built a number of VM2 sites I remain seriously impressed with it's flexibility and robustness.

Out of the box, the core functionality and styling are adequate (much better than the default themes for vm1.0 and 1.1 which were, frankly, pretty ugly), but initial configuration is quite complex, mainly because of the flexibility (read complexity) of what it will do. Other reviewers have commented on needing to know php to customise it - a bit of php knowledge is useful if you want to hack around the default templates and create your own template overrides (as is a knowledge of the Joomla MVC), but if you don't know any php / html and the default template doesn't grab you, there are plenty of low-cost commercial templates available as an alternative.

But a key strength of VM is that when you want more than the basic, it's there in the form of some truly excellent 3rd party extensions to deliver all the extra functionality you need. Many of these are commercial plugins, but mostly very low cost. Well worth exploring the extensions directory to see what's available. You'd have to be some cheapskate to begrudge a the few tens of dollars / euros it might cost to deliver the very fully featured sort of e-commerce site you can create if you want.

Where VM2 falls down though, is in it's documentation. Earlier versions, VM1.1 for example, had very comprehensive developer and user documentation, but this is lacking from VM2, where the online documentation is somewhat patchy.

I have road tested and built sites in other systems such as Magento, but overall, I believe VM is one of the best open-source e-commerce systems available, and remains my first choice.
Order Upload Pro for Virtuemart
Using this extension for a site that provides a wide range of customised printed and embroidered products, and needed a plugin for users to upload artwork and other files to accompany their order.

We're using the in-cart option so that users can only upload files once they are registered.

Installation was totally straightforward, and it looked good and worked exactly as it should straight out of the box and without any fuss.

Uploads go to a customer specific directory on the server, and are accessible to the store administrator directly from the customer order page.

I wish all extensions installed and worked as well as this!
Owner's reply

Dear Jeremy,
The Order Upload plugin for Virtuemart is really working on your site very well. We are very proud of your compliments to encourage other users to try it on Joomla. We're welcome you back to find any other Joomla Virtuemart modules, plugins, components to develop your ecommerce shop(s) at favorable prices and dedicated support at cmsmart.

Custom Fields For All
This is the second plugin I've used from this developer, and I can highly recommend it. We have a site where products have a multitude of custom fields, and this plugin provides a range of really attractive and intuitive ways for customers to select various product options: sizes, quantities, colours (including really neat multi-colour buttons).

Straightforward to install and easy to use, with decent documentation. Support is prompt and helpful, even where the problem lies with another plugin...

Highly recommended!
byjeremyD, June 27, 2013
I've been using this extension as my first choice forms manager for a few years now. Does everything you could want, and from a pretty straightforward user interface. There is an extensive forums/knowledge base where you can find answers on how to use it for more complex tasks. Just had my first experience of "real" support, and the response was fast and helpful, and the problem tracked to a conflict with a 3rd party plugin. Very highly recommended, and well worth the subscription.
byjeremyD, December 10, 2010
EasyCalcCheck PLUS
Very simple and easy to install. Using on two Virtuemart sites that had been plagued by product enquiry form spam. Took less than two minutes to install and configure on each, and spam has stopped. Excellent job.
Owner's reply

Thank you for your review!

byjeremyD, July 25, 2010
Better Preview
We add this to all the sites we deploy. Does exactly what it says Makes it much easier for admins to check pages.
Simple to install, and easy to configure. Just how it should be. Great stuff!
byjeremyD, February 25, 2008
This for us a standard extension that we install with every site we deploy. The image manager is much better than anything else, and much easier to understand than mosimage. It's really useful to be able to switch between WYSIWYG / HTML view without waiting for a pop-up. Or indeed being able to save your valid code without it being trashed by a dicky code cleaner in a popup HTML window!

Also being able to configure the layout is good as it lets you limit the damage your users can do when they start to use page level formatting. As well as speeding up the load time by leaving out some of the functions that aren't necessary for most users.

A must have for extension.
byjeremyD, October 15, 2007
Excellent classifieds component. Installs easily, and does everything it should. The only reason I haven't given it a 5 star rating, is because the configuration / administration could benefit from some tidying up to make is a bit less cumbersome for those (like me) who might push the component to the limit.

For example, I would like to have seen the stylesheet editable through the configuration screens, and the ability to group custom fields relating to individual categories so these could be viewed as a group.

But these are minor niggles that can be lived with, because otherwise AdsManager is a top component.