Best practices before installing a magento extension/plugin

Planning for adding any new feature to your Magento website… wait!!!! Here are some suggestions which we recommend before installing a magento extension/plugin.

  1. Ideally, nothing new must be implemented on a live website before prior to testing it on a staging setup.
  2. Before proceeding on the live website, take the backup of files (you can skip media files.)
  3. Enable Magento logging. Follow the below instructions to enable logging:
    -> Login to Magento back-end panel. Go to System > Configuration.
    -> On the bottom of the left pane go to ADVANCED > Developer > Log Settings. Set Enable to “yes”.
  4. Enable web server level logging by defining an error_log file.
  5. Disable and Clear Magento compiler. You can follow the below steps to clear compiler data: [Note: Magento back-end does not provide an option to clear compiler data. You need shell access to perform the below steps.]
    -> Login to shell and move into the Magento data directory.
    -> Go into directory ” shell “.
    -> Run this command to clear compiler data: ” PHP compiler.php clear “
    -> Run this command to disable compilation: ” PHP compiler.php disable “
    -> Test state of the compiler using this command: ” PHP compiler.php state “. The result must be like >
    ->Compiler Status: Disabled
    ->Compilation State: Not Compiled
    -> Collected Files Count: 0
    -> Compiled Scopes Count: 0
  6. Clear and Disable all types of caches from Magento backend (System > Cache Management). [This is temporary, re-enable cache types after installation & testing of extension.]
  7. Take care that whatever extension or plugin you are going to install it must be from a trusted source. Because installing these from an unknown or unauthorized source may include a backdoor for hackers to gain access to crucial information related to your business.
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