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Goodbye cache, hello real-time updates


One of the core features of Watchful is the ability manage outdated versions of Joomla add-ons.

This involves detecting the presence of newer add-on versions, notification of the site owner, and easy, 1-click updating.

Of course, much if this functionality was made possible when remote extension updates were first added to the Joomla core in version 1.6.

Unfortunately, performance concerns necessitated the addition of a caching mechanism in Joomla itself specifically for extension updates. For a typical user in the backend of a Joomla web site, clearing the cache and requesting fresh information on available updates became the norm.

And as a result of this cache, Watchful customers experienced a similar problem of stale extension update alerts magnified across all the sites in their Watchful Dashboard.

To address this, we added a Purge Cache button to the Watchful Dashboard in December of 2013 so accurate update information could be obtained in bulk.

But this was only a temporary solution as clearing the cache manually complicates usability.

Today we are thrilled to announce that a permanent solution has been implemented and the Purge Cache button in the Watchful dashboard has been finally removed.

A permanent solution

The solution to the problem was clear from the beginning — we had to devise a way to sever our reliance on the update information presented to us by each and every remote Joomla site.

In short, we spent the best part of the last year creating and testing a self-learning database for Joomla extension updates.

As a result, we’ve had a great performance boost as Watchful no longer requests this information from the remote sites.

In addition, we can process all the update information from our database locally on our servers and immediately determine what updates are needed for a site in real time. Thus, caching is no longer needed.

What about me?

For Watchful users, I’m happy to report that the update information in your Watchful dashboard will always be fresh and purging the cache is no longer necessary.

As noted above, the button has now been removed from the Watchful.

If you happen to be in the backend of your Joomla site and you see available updates in the Extension Manager that are not present in Watchful, just purge the cache (in Joomla 3, this is performed via the Find Updates button).

This is not necessary of course, and over time Joomla will clear the stale updates automatically (when the cache expires).

Why use Watchful?

You don’t offer maintenance plans for your customers.

You don’t offer maintenance plans for your customers.
Maintenance plans are a key way most agencies generate recurring revenue and keep in regular contact with their clients. With Watchful you can offer professional maintenance plans and deliver white-label reports to show your clients the value of your work.
Martijn Boomsma
Watchful keeps us on track with updates and maintenance tasks so our clients sites are always monitored and up-to-date.
Martijn Boomsma /

Learn more about White-Label Reports

You manage your websites manually.

You manage your websites manually.
We started like that! But our spreadsheets and reminders quickly became very complicated. We designed Watchful to simplify website management and actually make it pleasant experience.
Kristoffer Sandven saves me from manually monitoring dozens of websites - I can keep them updated with just a few clicks from a single, slick interface!
Kristoffer Sandven /

Learn more about Remote Installer

You use WordPress and Joomla! in your agency.

You use WordPress and Joomla! in your agency.
Watchful works seamlessly with the two most popular website softwares: Wordpress and Joomla. And the list of supported applications is growing.
Matthew Philogene provides a great overview of all our projects. Great support, great tools, cannot live without!
Matthew Philogene /

Learn more about Multi CMS dashboard

You don’t check your websites for security problems or backups.

You don’t check your websites for security problems or backups.
Watchful helps you monitor industry-accepted best-practices and potential security issues. And if a problem arises, Watchful’s customer support is there to help you understand the problem and advise you on possible solutions.
Joe Sonne
Using Watchful is far better than having to deal with a hacked website because a site fell behind in security updates.
Joe Sonne /

Learn more about Site Audit

It takes you days to update all your sites.

It takes you days to update all your sites.
Logging into websites and individually applying software updates is time-consuming and error-prone. With Watchful, we let you know what updates are available and help you apply updates across all your sites at the same time.
Jonathan Frewin
Watchful cut my monthly [maintenance] time down from days to hours.
Jonathan Frewin /
Learn more about Backup Manager

Watchful News and CMS Blog

WordPress support officially launches for Watchful - the webmasters toolbox

24 March 2017 / News

Effective immediately, Watchful now officially supports backups, updates, monitoring, and maintenance for websites powered by WordPress.

Preparations for migration to Amazon Web Services nearly complete

14 March 2017 / News

In the coming weeks, we plan to migrate our infrastructure from WiredTree to Amazon Web Service (AWS).

All News