Drupal tips, tricks, tutorials

Static HTML website builders (AkashaCMS, etc) slashes web hosting costs to the bone

Today's web is supposedly about fancy software on both server and client, building amazingly flexible applications merging content and functionality from anywhere.  What, then, is the role of old-school HTML websites?  In particular, why am I wasting my time building AkashaCMS and not building websites with Drupal?

Stopping server overload, cleaning up the site front page, disabling comments, and general goodness

The last few days the server hosting this site was overloaded, and I finally took a look at the access log, saw a continuous stream of requests that shouldn't be occurring, and realized the "links" row of teasers on the front page needed to go away. The default links row includes one reading "Log in to post comments" but this blog doesn't allow anybody else to register for an account, and in any case comments are handled by Disqus rather than Drupal's commenting system. The link didn't need to be there at all, and the more I looked at the links row the more useless it looked.

Do 3rd party commenting systems (Disqus et al) support my community, or theirs?

It used to be that Web 2.0 was the cool new thing, and a core feature was that the audience could leave comments on websites. It's common nowadays for websites to support comments, and comment areas have become (in some cases) a war zone full of partisan bickering. It was ground-breaking the 10ish or so years ago that websites began to support 3rd party comments. Really.

Review: Planning and Managing Drupal Projects by Dani Nordin

Want to know how to manage a project to build a website using Drupal? Planning and Managing Drupal Projects is a great choice, if you happen to be a Designer. According to Dani Nordin, the author of this tome, Designers often get put into the Project Management role alongside their Design role.

High Performance Drupal, Jeff Sheltren et al - REVIEW

cat.gifDrupal can scale from small blogs like this one all the way to humongo high profile sites like WhiteHouse.gov.

Migrate module can be alternate Drupal upgrade process, not just for importing foreign content

The originating purpose of the Drupal Migrate module is to import content from elsewhere. Where? Wordpress .. etc. Any place outside of Drupalsphere. The good thing is that the module is fairly open about what it will import, and therefore it's possible to import into a Drupal site from a Drupal site. And that by doing so, one can upgrade a Drupal site without going through the official Upgrade process.

Why might you want to do this?

Fixing things when your Drupal content fields don't display or you can't edit the field

Suppose you've added a field to a Drupal content type, but puzzlingly the field doesn't display on the node edit page? Or the field doesn't display when you view a node? Why would that happen? Maybe, you think, a custom themed node edit page simply didn't display the field? All kinds of ideas might come to mind while you're scratching your head wondering what might be going on. Adding a field to a content type should make it easy to edit and display data in that field, right?

Generating clean URL's for paginated content on Drupal sites

One of my clients wants his paginated content to have clean URL's. That is, Drupal sites frequently generate sequences of pages with "?page=##" query parameters to select each page. But he doesn't want this as a query parameter, but instead in the URL. The idea we're working on is to decrease the chance of duplicate content on the site as recorded by Google in the Webmaster Tools.

Unfortunately there really isn't a way to do this. Except for the Clean Pagination module https://drupal.org/project/cleanpager

Add a Google CSE to a Drupal 7 site without using google_cse module

The https://drupal.org/project/google_cse module appears to be a dead project - the Drupal 7 port hasn't had any activity in over 2 years. If you want to use a Google Custom Search Engine (CSE) on a Drupal 7 site, what do you do? Turns out it's relatively straight-forward to just generate the CSE over on Google's website, take the code and paste it into a Block, and that's it.

Took the Drupal 7 plunge -- finally -- Looking good

In January 2010 I attended a launch party for Drupal 7, and was real excited at the new features etc. But I started to look into upgrading my sites, and found a bunch of modules had not been ported to Drupal 7 yet. Eleven months ago, eleven months after that launch party, I posted an inventory of module readiness for upgrading my sites to Drupal 7, and still found a number were not ready, though in most cases I was feeling shy of modules marked "beta".