I was poking around our very own Joomlacode.org site today and started looking at some recent download statistics. As you may know, reliable market share information for open-source CMS packages is hard to find, and it is especially difficult to assess recent trends. However, Joomlacode tracks all file downloads (including those from the one-click version updates), and these do provide some useful data. Here are some numbers I found interesting.

In the last six months (September 2012 – February 2013), we registered the following download counts for full packages (excluding the update packages):

  • Joomla 2.5: 1,725,268 (about 288k per month)
  • Joomla 3.0: 796,340 (about 133k per month)

During this period, we averaged about 420k downloads per month of our two flagship products.

Here is another interesting number. We have registered a total of 764k downloads of the 2.5.8 update packages. This is a big increase over the number of 2.5.6 and 2.5.7 update downloads, which were in the 540k to 580k range. It is reasonable to guess that the great majority of these downloads are from sites using the one-click version update (either from an earlier 2.5.x version or version 1.7). Does this provide an indication of how many 2.5 sites there are? I think so. Obviously, not all of these downloads are production sites doing an update. However, there are also a lot of production 2.5 sites that use a different update mechanism. For example, many non-English sites use their own update sites and won’t be included in the Joomlacode downloads. To me, these download counts suggest that we have over ¾ of a million 2.5 sites in production, and that this number is trending up.

Finally, here are two charts that compare the full-package downloads to the update downloads for the past three months.

Chart of version 2.5 downloads

This shows that the full package downloads are holding steady at about 260k per month. But the monthly updates are trending up, again perhaps an indication that more 2.5.x sites are installed and being updated. Bear in mind that version 2.5.8 was released on 8 November 2012 (before the start of this) and 2.5.9 was released on 4 February 2013). So some of the increase in February updates is likely from the 2.5.9 release.

Chart showing version 3.0 downloads

This chart shows the same information for 3.0. We can see a steady climb in the full-package downloads, as we would hope. Also, we are starting to see an increase in the number of updates, again perhaps indicating the presence of 3.0 production sites being updated.

It is likely that, as the 3.x full package download count increases, some of it will be at the expense of the older 2.5 packages, which might explain why the 2.5 full package downloads above are not increasing.

What do we conclude from all this? Well, we need to be careful not to read too much into this. However, to me it indicates that (a) we are seeing an increase in 2.5 production sites, as indicated by the update downloads and (b) we are starting to see version 3.x gain market traction. In other words, our two flagship CMS products seem to be healthy.