How to install extensions for CiviCRM

CiviCRMCiviCRM is a feature rich CRM platform, but you might wish to add a new function that isn't available with a default installation. This article goes through the process.

Find an extension

Start by browsing to the CiviCRM Extensions page, and search for the extension that you need. Always keep a close eye on how popular the extension is, and whether it is being regularly maintained. For this example we will install the popular CiviRules extension.

  1. Select Shoreditch on the Extensions page.
  2. Click the Download button.

You will now have a .zip file ready to upload to your web server.


Extensions directory

You will need to find where your Extensions directory is.

  1. Open the /sites/default/civicrm.settings.php file.
  2. Scroll to around line 80 to see the following line:
// Additional settings generated by installer:
$civicrm_paths['civicrm.files']['url'] = '';
$civicrm_paths['civicrm.files']['path'] = '/www/';

From here you can see the path on the web server, represented by the variable [civicrm.files].

  1. Log in to CiviCRM with an admin account.
  2. Go to Administer > System Settings > Resource URLs.
  3. In a default Drupal installation the URL for Extensions is [civicrm.files]/ext/.

We can therefore deduce that the path is:



Install the extension

Start by uploading and extracting the downloaded .zip file to the directory identified in the previous step.

  1. Log in to CiviCRM with an admin account.
  2. Go to Administer > System Settings > Extensions.
  3. Click the Refresh button.
  4. Click Install for CiviRules.
  5. Click Install on the summary page.

Your extension will now be installed.

Note that if your extension doesn't appear when you refresh the Extensions page, it's most likely that it isn't supported on your version of CiviCRM or your particular CMS platform.


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