Locally Hosted Google Fonts

The Sparky Framework v5.1.0 has been released. The most important change in this version is a change in the way how our templates are loading Google fonts. Until this version, all Google fonts were included to the website remotely, from the Google servers. Now, they are downloaded and hosted locally.

We have received many requests from our clients for this feature. The main reason for this is related to the privacy concerns. As you probably know, loading the fonts remotely from Google servers can make your website incompatible with strict GDPR rules. You may be forced to include warnings on your website that inform all visitors about it and ask for their permission. It's too much hassle for a simple thing like website fonts. Therefore, many of our clients discontinued usage of Google fonts and decided to use simpler standard web-safe fonts. This decision can hurt the website's uniqueness and attractivity.

In the Sparky Framework v5.1.0 (and all future versions), as soon as you include a Google font into your website through the template options, it will be downloaded and stored in the media folder. The CSS code is now changed and it imports the font in the website from the locally hosted Google font files. Therefore, you don't have to worry about privacy concerns anymore, as far as it's related to the fonts.

Starting a new website? Please re-download the template package.

The HotStart packages (quickstart installations) of all our templates are updated to use the new version of the framework and they will be hosting Google fonts locally out-of-the-box. So, please, before starting a new project, make sure you re-download the template package from our download repository to save yourself from upgrading the framework later.

The new framework is available only for the current version of Joomla 5. It will be also available for all future versions of Joomla. The new framework does not support the older Joomla versions (3 and 4).

Upgrading to the Sparky Framework v5.1.0

If you are running a website that's based on the older version of the Sparky Framework, we will explain how you can upgrade it and start using locally hosted Google fonts.

In this tutorial, we will suppose that you are using the Business Joomla template. The steps are the same for any template, just the template package file name mentioned below is different.

  1. Make sure you have a full website backup. Upgrading the framework can make your website inaccessible or look different, especially if you did a lot of the customizations to the template files.
  2. Download the standard template installation package for the template you are using. For the Business template, the archive you should download will be hot_business5x.zip.
  3. From your Joomla administrator panel, go to System > Install > Extensions. Open the "Upload Package File" tab. Click the green "Browse" button and select the file hot_business5x.zip (or another template file if you are using a different template). The template files will be uploaded and the entire framework will be upgraded.
  4. Go to System > Site Template Styles > Hot Business (or another template name if you are using a different template). In the template options page, click the "Save & Close" button without changing any parameters. This action will download the Google fonts you are using and re-generate the CSS file.

You can confirm that your website is now loading a locally hosted Google font if you open the folder /media/templates/site/business (or another template name if you are using a different template). There should be a folder named "fonts" and it contains all the font files that your website is using.

If you have any concerns or problems about this, please post on our Joomla support forum.