How to discover if a site has been built with Joomla!

Today I’ve updated my customers’ requests’ list with a particular one from an hair stylist products’ reseller.

The mail body:

home page restyling

and nothing else matters.

I’m not kiddind: not an “Hello guys” nor a thank for the patience we paied to read the mail ( the 19 letters that compose the whole mail! ).

So, no probs!

I asked, in the reply, if they need a complete restyling of the site and …{other boring stuff}… …but the big question was: how was their site built?

Current site’s layout sucks at all so, I’ve thought, it has been built with frontpage or simple HTML+CSS old way ( like this blog’s layout, but more ridicolous ).

No: after a while I’ve decided to know if they were using a CMS and it came out they use Joomla!.

How did I found it out? Let’s take a look to the ways you can recognize a Joomla!-based site.

URLs

Dynamic URLs, in Joomla!, are something like:

but this site used static URLs.

Next!

Generator metatag

The generator metatag defines Joomla! 1.5 as the software that builds the site; unfortunately, it missed here.

Next!

HTML source

In HTML source of the webpages of the site you can find lots of signs of the usage of Joomla!:

and many others.

Ridicolous, this site used a source encryption tool!

Next!

Standard URLs

I’ve tried to type a standard URL like index.php?option=com_user but I got a forbidden error: what a stupid webmaster built this site, trying to hide that he used Joomla!

Next!

/administrator

The backend of the site was protected by a php script.

This appeared to me like a confirmation of the usage of Joomla! because the webmaster could have used any URL he wanted to reach the backend of the site; although I cannot directly get to the backend of the CMS, the fact that the /administrator path was the backend of the site made me realize that it was a Joomla!-based site, but I needed a new confirmation.

Next!

Template blocks

So I’ve reached:

and it suddenly appeared the typical Joomla!’s template blocks view.

Next one, sheriff!


Hi there! I recently wrote an ebook on web application security, currently sold on leanpub, the Amazon Kindle store and gumroad.

It contains 160+ pages of content dedicated to securing web applications and improving your security awareness when building web apps, with chapters ranging from explaining how to secure HTTP cookies with the right flags to understanding why it is important to consider joining a bug bounty program.

Feel free to skim through some of the free chapters published on this blog and, if the content seems interesting enough to you, grab a copy on leanpub, the Amazon Kindle store, gumroad or simply checkout right down below!

Buy the Web Application Security ebook for $9.99

In the mood for some more reading?

...or check the archives.