Overview of User Management in Joomla - dummies

Overview of User Management in Joomla

By Seamus Bellamy, Steve Holzner

Joomla sites have eight levels of users, all managed in Joomla with the User Manager. The eight levels are grouped into three classes of users.

The first class of users is the Public front-end class of users:

  • Public users are casual surfers of your site. Although they can view your site, they have not registered, and therefore cannot sign into the site.

  • Registered users can log in to see resources that are reserved for them.

The next three levels of front-end users fall into the special user class, along with all the back-end users:

  • Authors can submit articles.

  • Editors can submit new articles and edit existing articles.

  • Publishers can submit new articles, edit existing articles, and publish articles.

Finally, the back end has three levels of users:

  • Managers can manage everything having to do with site content.

  • Administrators can perform administrative functions.

  • Super Users can do anything that’s possible to do on a Joomla site.

To open User Manager, click its icon in the control panel or choose Users→User Manager in any back-end page.


User Manager is great for adding new users to your team or editing the records of existing users, such as when they change their e-mail addresses, or are taking on an extra area of responsibility with your site. You can even disable a user’s account by clicking the checkbox next to the account name and clicking the Block button.

The User Manager has three tabs — Users, Groups, and Access Levels — which makes it easy to control the various functions of User Manger without any clutter.

To edit an existing user, simply click on the user’s name. By doing so, you open up the User Manager: Edit User page for that user.

You can configure several settings in the Edit User page, such as entering a new e-mail address or password, or changing the user’s privilege level by resetting the user group (author, publisher, administrator, and so on) to which he belongs in the Assigned Groups pane. A user can even be a member of several groups, both default and created. All you need to do is check off the appropriate boxes.

Under the Basic Settings pane, you can adjust the Frontend and Backend languages that the user sees once signed into the site (excluding articles, though — if an article was written in English, it will stay in English). Help settings and what time zone the user resides in can be switched up here as well.

You’ll note that despite there being a field to display it, you are unable to see the user’s password. This doesn’t mean that the user hasn’t password-protected his account. Rather, as a security feature, Joomla hashes the password out. Despite its failure to appear in the Edit User’s Accounts Details pane, the password is indeed present.

If you want to change a user’s password, you can do so by simply entering a new one into the password field and then confirming the password by entering it into the Confirm Password field located directly under it in the Account Details pane.