Disable Update of Certain Extensions in Joomla

Note: Please read this post entirely before taking any action.

We occasionally get some developers calling us and asking us how to exclude extensions from showing up on the Extensions -> Extension Manager -> Update page. They usually tell us that the reason they want to do this is to prevent their clients from accidentally updating an extension that they have modified (in other words, they don’t want their clients to overwrite the work that they did for them on these extensions). So, we tell them that this can be done easily, here’s how:

  1. Login to phpMyAdmin and select the database that serves the website.
  2. Click on the table #__update_sites. Take note of the update_site_id value of all the extensions that you do not want to display on the Update page.

  3. Go to the table #__update_sites_extensions and delete all the rows that have an update_site_id matching the above.

  4. Now, go back to the #__update_sites table and delete all the rows of all the extensions that you do not want to update.

  5. Once that is done, you should login to the backend of the Joomla site and go to Extensions -> Extension Manager -> Update, and then click on Purge Cache on the top right.

An alternative way of hiding those extensions from the Update page is to substitute steps #3 and #4 in the above list with the following:

  • Go to the table #__update_sites and change the value of the field enabled to 0 for those extensions that you do not want to display on the Update page.

Note that the alternative method may or may not work for you, depending on your Joomla version, but it’s worth trying, because if it doesn’t, then you are going to delete these rows anyway.

But, isn’t that a bad thing to do? What if an update is actually a security update?

We agree that removing the update functionality for certain extensions is not best practice and can lead to security issues on the website, but, in some cases, such updates can create problems as described here, so they should be disabled. Additionally, and as discussed in the beginning of this post, a programmer can make some modifications to a 3rd party extension and an update can cause these modifications to be overwritten.

If you need help disabling the update of a problematic Joomla extension, then please contact us. We’ll solve the problem quickly for you and we won’t charge you much!

3 Responses to “Disable Update of Certain Extensions in Joomla”
  1. Comment by Marc Oliveras — December 4, 2018 @ 12:18 pm

    Thanks for the article, very helpful. There is another way to disable extensions, though. If you go to the administrator, then “Extensions > Manage > Update Sites” you will be able to do it without using phpMyAdmin.

  2. Comment by Fadi — January 23, 2019 @ 9:48 am

    @Marc This is absolutely correct! Thank you very much!

  3. Comment by Roy Pope — March 10, 2024 @ 8:54 am

    None of the suggestions on this page appear to work for Joomla 4.4.3. I first tried the suggestion left by Marc, and the extension update that I am trying to remove from the Update section is still there. I then tried merely changing the value of “enabled” to 0, and after deleting my cache the update message and option are still there. I then deleted the relevant entries from the database, altogether, and after deleting my cache for the third time the update message and option still shows up in the Update section of my Joomla installation.

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