A look at the Joomla 3.1 Session Handler Setting

In our last Joomla 3.0 tutorial, we talked a little about sessions, specifically the session lifetime setting. Again, the session lifetime setting allows you to change the amount of time idle users will stayed logged into Joomla 3.0

Joomla 3.0 includes another session setting you can adjust, Session Handler. Joomla gives the following description on this setting:

Session Handler:
The mechanism by which Joomla! identifies a User once they are connected to the web site using non-persistent cookies.


What Session Handler options are available?

At the time of this writing, Joomla 3.0 only gives you two options for Session Handler:


  1. Database
  2. None


Where is session data stored in the database?

When the Database option is set for Session Handler, session data is stored in a table named session. For example, if you have a table prefix of abc set for all of your Joomla tables, the session data would be stored in abc_session.


Most of the information stored in a session within the database is not easily identifiable, but it can be seen on your server hosting joomla. For example, if you look at the screenshot to the left, you will see that the information stored in the data field is difficult to interpret simply by looking at it.


What’s next?

Typically there are additional options for Session Handler, such as File. With an option for file session handling, Joomla 3.0 would save session data to text files on your server rather than as rows in your session table. At the time of this writing, database is the only session handler option. If additional session handlers become available, we’ll keep you posted.

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