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Drupal 6 Essential Training
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Creating users


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Drupal 6 Essential Training

with Tom Geller

Video: Creating users

Most of what you will do in this course looks at your site from the point of view of an Administrator. But now it's time to step across the threshold and see what the site looks like from the other side, that is, from that of a visitor. We will do this by going through the sign up procedure as it's defined in Drupal's default configuration and then we will look at some of the options that you as the administrator have, to change that membership process. First, we are going to log out, so we are no longer the Administrator. If I was someone coming across your Drupal website like this for the first time, I might be able to create a new account. Here I would put in my proposed Username, let's call me fishyjoe and my e-mail address fishyjoe@example.com and Create new account. You will notice this message up here that tells us that further instructions have been sent to that e- mail address. Now I am going to go in to my site as the Administrator to see what happens when a user tries to create an account. Admin -- to do so, we go to Administer, down to Users and here we have the member fishyjoe. Let's take a look at some of the options that we have to edit. We can change the Username, if for example, they have put in something obscene or unwanted, their E-mail address, we can change their Password, their Status, so if for example, we have some reason to block them, we can do that here. We can also give them a role. We had previously created this one contributing user, so let's say we know who fishyjoe is. We can say Oh! Yeah and we know that we want that person to be a Contributor, we can click that.
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  1. 4m 38s
    1. Welcome
      50s
    2. Using the example files
      3m 48s
  2. 28m 55s
    1. Drupal is a CMS
      7m 43s
    2. Choosing Drupal
      5m 32s
    3. Checking Drupal's requirements
      4m 26s
    4. Understanding the inner workings of Drupal
      4m 35s
    5. Meeting the Drupal community
      6m 39s
  3. 11m 28s
    1. Learning key terms in Drupal
      5m 20s
    2. Touring Drupal's interface
      6m 8s
  4. 34m 35s
    1. Installing WAMP and Drupal on Windows
      9m 41s
    2. Installing MAMP
      4m 34s
    3. Setting up the database on a Mac
      2m 2s
    4. Downloading and installing Drupal on a Mac
      6m 37s
    5. Troubleshooting installation problems
      3m 49s
    6. Automating updates with cron
      7m 52s
  5. 25m 37s
    1. Setting up clean URLs
      5m 52s
    2. Backing up your Drupal site
      3m 31s
    3. Restoring your Drupal site from backup
      4m 19s
    4. Wiping your Drupal installation clean
      2m 7s
    5. Updating Drupal
      9m 48s
  6. 15m 37s
    1. Using the Administration menu
      6m 21s
    2. Setting site information
      4m 50s
    3. Setting the theme
      4m 26s
  7. 35m 8s
    1. Understanding security and permissions
      7m 2s
    2. Controlling site access with user management
      3m 39s
    3. Creating users
      7m 58s
    4. Setting user profiles
      9m 40s
    5. Creating contact forms
      6m 49s
  8. 19m 19s
    1. Creating your site's basic info pages
      7m 13s
    2. Understanding page layout
      5m 40s
    3. Creating a flexible layout with blocks
      6m 26s
  9. 15m 35s
    1. Monitoring performance
      4m 52s
    2. Recovering from disasters
      7m 37s
    3. Improving administration skills
      3m 6s
  10. 41m 3s
    1. Understanding nodes
      6m 50s
    2. Creating basic content: Stories and pages
      7m 9s
    3. Enabling other content types
      9m 22s
    4. Adding blogs
      3m 49s
    5. Adding forums
      6m 56s
    6. Adding polls
      6m 57s
  11. 34m 50s
    1. Exploring content categories
      7m 45s
    2. Exchanging content via RSS
      9m 47s
    3. Using input filters
      7m 41s
    4. Managing comments
      9m 37s
  12. 38m 5s
    1. Configuring your theme
      11m 27s
    2. Changing your theme's graphics
      4m 59s
    3. Finding and installing a new theme
      8m 56s
    4. Understanding Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
      5m 56s
    5. Deciphering CSS files
      6m 47s
  13. 22m 41s
    1. Finding modules
      6m 53s
    2. Unpacking and installing modules
      6m 30s
    3. Configuring modules
      3m 50s
    4. Implementing complex modules
      5m 28s
  14. 32m 12s
    1. Ensuring automated updates with poormanscron
      3m 11s
    2. Defining custom content types with CCK
      12m 54s
    3. Stopping spam using a CAPTCHA
      10m 43s
    4. Using a WYSIWYG text editor
      5m 24s
  15. 22m 18s
    1. Getting around with multilevel menus
      7m 26s
    2. Building custom menus
      5m 42s
    3. Creating easy-to-navigate books
      9m 10s
  16. 20m 19s
    1. Changing page templates with PHP
      8m 15s
    2. Using PHP in content
      5m 20s
    3. Implementing PHP snippets
      6m 44s
  17. 10m 15s
    1. Launching your site
      5m 52s
    2. Joining the Drupal community
      4m 23s
  18. 14s
    1. Goodbye
      14s

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Drupal 6 Essential Training
6h 52m Beginner Aug 25, 2008

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Drupal is a free, open-source content management system (CMS) for a variety of platforms. It has a robust user community and easy-to-use administration features. Drupal Essential Training covers all the important aspects of installing, configuring, customizing, and maintaining a Drupal-powered website. Instructor Tom Geller explores blogs, discussion forums, member profiles, and other features while demonstrating the steps required to make Drupal perform. He also teaches fundamental concepts and skills along the way, including installation, backups, and updates; security and permissions; flexible page layouts and CSS; menu navigation; and performance monitoring and disaster recovery. He also discusses how to select and install the community-supported modules that further expand Drupal's capabilities, and gives experienced PHP programmers tips on customizing page templates. Example files accompany the course.

Topics include:
  • Understanding the inner workings of Drupal
  • Creating stories, pages, blogs, forums, and polls
  • Managing users and comments
  • Setting and customizing themes
  • Exchanging content via RSS
  • Stopping comment spam with a CAPTCHA
  • Launching a site and joining the Drupal community
Subjects:
Web CMS
Software:
Drupal
Author:
Tom Geller

Creating users

Most of what you will do in this course looks at your site from the point of view of an Administrator. But now it's time to step across the threshold and see what the site looks like from the other side, that is, from that of a visitor. We will do this by going through the sign up procedure as it's defined in Drupal's default configuration and then we will look at some of the options that you as the administrator have, to change that membership process. First, we are going to log out, so we are no longer the Administrator. If I was someone coming across your Drupal website like this for the first time, I might be able to create a new account. Here I would put in my proposed Username, let's call me fishyjoe and my e-mail address fishyjoe@example.com and Create new account. You will notice this message up here that tells us that further instructions have been sent to that e- mail address. Now I am going to go in to my site as the Administrator to see what happens when a user tries to create an account. Admin -- to do so, we go to Administer, down to Users and here we have the member fishyjoe. Let's take a look at some of the options that we have to edit. We can change the Username, if for example, they have put in something obscene or unwanted, their E-mail address, we can change their Password, their Status, so if for example, we have some reason to block them, we can do that here. We can also give them a role. We had previously created this one contributing user, so let's say we know who fishyjoe is. We can say Oh! Yeah and we know that we want that person to be a Contributor, we can click that.

They will automatically be an authenticated user because that's what all members become. And let's just say Save here. By default on Drupal, the user will receive an e-mail to the address that they gave saying, we understand you would like to become a member, please click on this special link to finish your registration process. The reason that's done is because so many people will enter false e-mail addresses and that's one way that abuse happens on websites. So this makes sure at least that the e-mail address is proper and true. If the person doesn't have that e-mail address, then they would never receive the message that would give them their secret link. So the users can create their own accounts but the Administrator can also add users as they like. It's on the same screen, which again is Administer and then Users by just going Add user. Let's add fishysue and the e-mail address fishysue@example.com. Once again, you would set a password. Oops! I didn't set it the same so let's try that again, password again. Good, the passwords match, although it's not a very high password strength. This is an automatic feature in Drupal 6, it checks to make sure, you are giving the best passwords possible. And again, you can set certain features, I don't know why you would set a new account that would be Blocked, but you have that option. Finally, if you like, you can notify the user of new account in which case, it will send an e-mail to that fishysue@example.com address in our example here. You might not want to do that, if for example, you have spoken to that person and said here, you are sitting right here, I'll just create your account there. You don't really need an e-mail to tell you that you have this. And then you just say Create new account, there. We have a new account created.

You can also prevent people from entering certain types of user names or registering e-mail addresses from certain domains, say for example, your competitors. You can do that by going to Administer, Access rules. Let's add a rule that will let us see what sort of options we have to block. First you can choose to only allow addresses and user names and so forth that meet a certain pattern or by default, you can deny them. Let's say that we want to deny all people with user names that contain squid in them. These special characters down here let you block certain kinds of wild-card patterns. The % sign blocks all strings, no matter how long they are. So for example, if I didn't want squidsue and joesquid, I would say % squid% and then Add Rule. Now if I want to check to see what sort of names I can add, we will do Check rules. Say username jimmythesquid and check the username, Aha! It's not allowed. However if I were to do tomtheoctopus, and check that username, that is allowed. Let's go back to our list and just delete that one.

You have many more options of how users register for your site. Let's go to Administer and User Settings to see exactly what those are. This is a very long screen. It has many, many options in it including long texts here that you can edit. But really, it's only broken down in to four sections. At the top you have basic registration settings, the first set of radio buttons lets you make it so that only you can create user accounts, it takes away that link that says create your own account. The second one, which is ON by default, lets visitors create their own account and you don't have to approve everyone. The third one lets visitors create accounts but only will become members if you say yes.

Again we talked about e-mail verification and the third section lets you put some help texts. So for example, You can't use the word squid in your username, for example. That will appear above the form when people are signing up for their accounts. The user e-mail settings let you change what sort of e-mail people get when they sign up for the site. There are several different options here, one is if the user is created by the Administrator, that's a different message from if somebody has created their own account which is another different message from if somebody has created an account but it has to be approved by an Administrator. The third section, lets users put in Signatures at the end of their user profiles. Then for example, they could comment on forum posts and at the end of all of their comments, it would have some small block of text. By default, it's Disabled. Similarly, the picture section lets people put a little user picture next to their account, which can show up next to forum posts, for example or comments or just in their profile. We will say Save Configuration here. Now let's Log Out again and say Create new account.

Remember how we said, you can't have the word squid in your username? Well, there it is. Let's log back in as the Administrator and let's take a look again at our list of users. One final thing that you can do here is once you have been online for a long time, you'll have a long, long list of users and you may want to do the same thing to all of them. For example, block several of them, or delete several of them. You can do that by checking them as I have just done and then choosing the option that you want from up here. You can also change the roles that they have, so let's say that fishyjoe and fishysue have been very good members and you want to say, yeah, I want to make them a contributing user, you can do that very easily that way and then click Update. Additionally, you can show only those people who are contributing users, by clicking on the role and then clicking on Filter with Contributing User selected and so forth with permissions and status.

As you can see, Drupal gives you considerable control over how people register for your site and what they can do on it and there's further control available through third party modules that are available for download. Through these tools you can manage how users go from being an anonymous user to an authenticated user and then in addition, give them other permissions as is appropriate for them.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Drupal 6 Essential Training.


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Q: While following along to the installation instructions in the “Installing WAMP and Drupal on Windows” chapter in the Drupal Essential Training title, an error occurs when attempting to open the local host page. Nothing appears except for an error reading “WAMPSERVER server offline.” What is causing this?
A: There is a known problem with some versions of WAMP that include a version of PHP (5.3) that some versions of Drupal is not compatible with. See http://tomgeller.com/content/tips-running-drupal-windows-using-wamp#comment-831 for more information.
If that is not causing the issue, reference the tips at http://tomgeller.com/content/tips-running-drupal-windows-using-wamp.
If you don't see the solution at either of those links, try using another AMP stack, such as XAMPP or the Acquia stack installer. See http://tomgeller.com/content/what-hells-wrong-drupal-wamp for discussion about these.
Q: After installing XAMPP and running Drupal for the first time, the Administration menu does not appear. What is the reason for this?
A: There are several possible problems. Here are some likely solutions. (These may also solve problems encountered with other AMP stacks.)
  1. Increase XAMPP's PHP allocation.
  2. Check to make sure all XAMPP's paths are correct and that permissions are correct. If the database information appears, but not Drupal's supporting files, and an included theme is being used, the supporting files will be in the /modules folder.
  3. Another solution is to not use WAMP or XAMPP. One option is to use Acquia's Drupal Stack Installer ("DAMP"), which can be found at http://www.acquia.com/downloads. However, that installs Acquia Drupal, which is a version of "normal" Drupal extended with additional modules. If  only core Drupal is desired, see the instructions at http://acquia.com/blog/kieran/try-drupal-7-alpha-your-laptop-or-desktop. (The instructions are for Drupal 7, but will work for Drupal 6 as well.)
Q: In the "Using the example files" movie, the method of importing information to the database is shown, using the backup in Chapter 10. When attempting to do this, the following error is shown: "No data was received to import. Either no file name was submitted, or the file size exceeded the maximum size permitted by your PHP configuration. See FAQ 1.16." The system is running the latest versions of Apache, PhP and MySQL, on Windows Vista. What could be causing the problem?
A: This is probably caused because your AMP stack allocates too little memory to PHP. 
 
That's especially true if you're using WAMP, which only gives PHP 2MB of memory, when it really needs at least 16MB. 
You'll see the issue if you go to the MySQL-controlling phpMyAdmin screen (probably at http://localhost/phpMyAdmin) and click "Import": The maximum file size allowed is 2,048K. That's only 2MB, and the databases for most Drupal sites are much larger than that. (The example site for Drupal Essential Training gets as big as 5MB.) The video "Installing WAMP and Drupal on Windows" shows (at around 3:30) where the php.ini file is, but here are some more-complete instructions to increase that memory limit. 

  1. Click the WAMP icon in your system tray.
  2. Select "PHP". In the side menu, select "php.ini" to open a file containing PHP's configuration options.
  3. Search for the line, "upload_max_filesize = 2M".
  4. Change it to "upload_max_filesize = 32M" (or whatever you like). 
  5. Save the file and restart WAMP. (Better yet, restart your computer entirely to be sure. I'm frankly not sure whether it makes a difference.)
  6. Now go back to that "Import" screen in phpMyAdmin: You should notice that the limit has changed.
Q: I don't remember the default username and password used demonstrate Drupal.
A: The default username used in the course is "admin"; the default password is "booth".
Q: How can I change Drupal's administrative username and password?
A: If for some reason the default exercise file username (admin) and password (booth) don't work, you can change them in the database itself using phpMyAdmin. (This technique is demonstrated in a video from Chapter 8, "Recovering from disasters".)

  1. Open your Drupal database with phpMyAdmin.
  2. Go to the "users" table. Click the Browse icon.
  3. For the row where uid = 1, click the Edit icon. (Note the value under the "Name" column: That's the administrator's username.)
  4. In the "pass" row, select "MD5" under the "Function" column
  5. In the same row, enter your new password under the "Value" column.
  6. At the bottom of the screen, click the "Go" button. You should now be able to log in with that username and new password.
Q: In Windows Vista, the WAMP icon disappears from the system tray after a certain amount of time. How do I get it to reappear?
A: To make the WAMP icon reappear (so that you can access localhost, phpmyadmin, php.ini, etc.), you have to activate the "start WAMP server" icon (from start menu, desktop or wherever). The system tray icon will reappear.
Q: My .htaccess file disappeared. What caused this?
A: A few times during the Drupal Essential Training video series, the instructor says to copy a Drupal installation by selecting all the files in the folder and then "dragging and dropping" them, either to a server or another location on your local computer. This is not the best way to do so, as the hidden file ".htaccess" will not be copied. 

There are two ways to get around that problem: 
  1. When installing Drupal for the first time: Instead of copying files from the Drupal folder, move the entire folder to its target location and rename it. This is the easiest solution for those without experience with Unix. 
  2. Use the command-line interface to copy the .htaccess file.
Sorry for the error.
Q: In the video, the instructor says the current version of Drupal is 6.3, but on the drupal.org site, the latest version is 6.17. Which is the newer version of Drupal?
A: Drupal 6.17 is newer than version 6.3. For some reason, the the version numbers go 6.3, 6.4... 6.9, 6.10... 6.17. It’s counter-intuitive, but that’s the order.
Q: My WAMP phpMyadmin will not allow me to upload the exercise files. It returns this message: "No data was received to import. Either no file name was submitted, or the file size exceeded the maximum size permitted by your PHP configuration. See FAQ 1.16." There was no previous database to drop, so what do I need to do to make this work?
A: This is a common problem, caused not by Drupal, but by WAMP. WAMP only allows you to upload files of 2MB or smaller, which is much too small. The solution is detailed at http://tomgeller.com/cant-import-a-drupal-site-in-windows.
 
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