Wow, I mean wow, what a disappointment. Based on the top billing and glowing reviews I truly expected a lot more; like a program that actually installed.
21 megs isn't a component, it's a stand alone program. And that's how this should have been packaged. Just like SMF and phpBB, this should have been packaged as a stand alone installation with a BRIDGE. I spent HOURS trying to get this thing to install following every thread I could read with no real results. And because the password on the demo site is not the one listed, I STILL have no idea what it even looks like.
To have a developer suggest that you "consult a professional to install" it (actually in one of the threads!) is counter intuitive - the largest demogrpahic of Joomla is people without extensive programming, PHOP and MySQL knowledge. Furthermore the target audience, non profits, are trying to do everything they can to AVOID such an extra expense. Many aspects, especially front end access, feel like 'hacks' instead of councious efforts to work in the Joomla framework.
I *am* a consultant and I've never had to give up on an install until CiviCRM. I hope they'll separate the app from the bridge and give each the attention they deserve because it seems like if you are lucky enough to get it to work, it's got an excellent feature set.
I'm moving onto trying others and keep hoping they'l work these things out. You shouldn't have to hack your config files and php.ini to get a real Joomla component to work.