Drupal Basics


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Drupal Basics

  1. 1. Drupal BasicsMay 30, 2012By Sean Fitzpatrick
  2. 2. Welcome  Were going to talk about Drupal  Were going to keep it pretty basic  You should leave with enough curiosity to experiment on your own  This is not a Drupal vs. Wordpress smackdown, but we will be making some comparisonsSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  3. 3. Introductions  Who am I?  What is LISHost?  What do we do?Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  4. 4. Scope of the workshop  Were going to try to cover the basics  I am assuming most of you are beginners  If you are a total beginner, I apologize for going fast and using technical terms  If you are not a total beginner, I apologize for going slow and using basic termsSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  5. 5. What is Drupal?And why is it awesome for library sites?  Open source content management framework  “Allows you to create and maintain many different types of websites without needing to know any coding languages” – http://drupal.org/node/258  No prescribed configurations, but many features common to library sites are easily available in DrupalSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  6. 6. Why Drupal?Lots of stuff available for typical library sites:  News Feeds  Calendar  Taxonomies  Image handling (such as galleries)  Search  Comments and other social functionalitySean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  7. 7. Drupal 6 or Drupal 7?Its a shame I even put this slide in here. Just use Drupal 7.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  8. 8. Core, Contrib, and ThemeThese three components are the basis of an open framework for building beautiful bespoke websites.Drupal is like a Lego kit. Skilled developers have already made the building blocks - in the form of contributed modules - that you need to create a site that suits your needs, whether that is a news site, an online store, a social network, blog, wiki, or something else altogether.From http://drupal.org/getting-started/before/overviewSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  9. 9. Drupal core  Talks to the database (so you dont have to)  Provides some basic functionality for organizing content  Builds content into web pages  Gives some basic options for a front end (theme)  (i.e, Drupal core gives you a basic, dynamic website)Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  10. 10. Contributed modules  Thousands of modules extend Drupals core  This makes anything possible. (“Theres a module for that...”)  Modules have already done all the “heavy lifting”  And all this comes with benefits and challengesSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  11. 11. Theme  Theme layer presents content and markup to the browser  Rendered with PHP  And HTML, JS, CSS, etc  Drupal offers lots of template files and overridesSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  12. 12. Good and Bad  Ultimate flexibility  Future extendability  Scalability vs  Learning Curve  Staff timeSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  13. 13. Learning curve?I believe the “learning curve” inexperienced people associate with Drupal pertains to site building and back-end development. This is irrelevant for day-to-day content managers.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  14. 14. Technology stack  Web Server: Apache or Microsoft IIS  PHP: 5.2 or higher  Database Server: MySQL - 5.0 or higher, PostgreSQL - 8.3 or higher, or SQLite (Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle are supported by an additional module)Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  15. 15. Personnel and skill sets  Project manager  Information designer  Copywriters (dont tell me youre going to migrate...)  Web designer  Developer – could be two – front- and back-end  IT/Systems guySean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  16. 16. Lets stop for some questionsSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  17. 17. Installation  From scratch...  provision server  Install apache, mysql, php, some other packages  Installing Drush is a good idea for command line people  Download Drupal  Set directory permissions  Create a database  Run the installation scriptSean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  18. 18. Post install: Dream big, code little  Installing Drupal is pretty trivial. Then the real work starts.  By selecting great contributed modules and learning how to implement them, you can achieve amazing functionality without any programming.  Similarly, some themes offer a lot of robust configuration options for creating beautiful sites without writing any code.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  19. 19. Content types and Views  Content types are extended with custom fields.  Fields store data in the database. Lots of data types are available, such as dates, files, location coordinates, and so forth.  The Views module (contrib) is a tool set for building complex queries with a graphical UI (no coding).Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  20. 20. API and theme libraries  You can go a long way without programming, but big, complex sites need custom development.  Drupal offers a rich API for extending functionality.  Similarly, base themes and theme functions allow for implementing any kind of front-end design.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  21. 21. Buzzword compliance  HTML5, CSS3  Mobile-first  Responsive design  SASS/Compass  Etc. (I pretty much only follow buzzwords from the front-end dev world)Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  22. 22. Third-party content  Drupal has some amazing tools for integrating third- party content (try the Feeds module)  RSS, XML, CSV, SQL  Evanced  ILS  ???Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  23. 23. Users and Workflows  Custom user roles/permissions by module (no pre- defined roles to limit flexibility)  Simple publishing and editing for small institutions.  Ability to create complex workflows to scale up for large institutions. (Check out the Rules module.)Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  24. 24. Security  Yes, sites get hacked.  Keep modules up-to-date (especially security updates).  Keep other stuff up-to-date.  Be careful about permissions.  Keep track of users, logs, spam, etc.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  25. 25. Scalability Oh yeah, some big library sites too.Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org
  26. 26. Additional Resources  drupal.org/documentation  groups.drupal.org  api.drupal.org  Drupal4Lib (http://listserv.uic.edu/archives/drupal4lib.html)  #drupal (irc)  info@lishost.org  Print?Sean Fitzpatrick | sean@lishost.org