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Drupal 7 Custom Module Development
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Next steps


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Drupal 7 Custom Module Development

with Jon Peck

Video: Next steps

This course is intended to provide a foundational knowledge of the Drupal infrastructure and API, providing context in a complex system. As such, there are a number of areas that can be explored further. Basic interactions with the Entity API were used to create a new content type. But what if a more lightweight and custom solution is necessary? The Entity API allows a developer to build a custom entity from the ground up without the overhead of nodes. To facilitate this, the entity project extends the core Entity API to reduce some of the complexities when creating new entity types.

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Drupal 7 Custom Module Development
2h 57m Advanced Oct 16, 2012

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Extend your Drupal 7 sites with custom modules, which allow you to create everything from admin interfaces to forms. Author Jon Peck describes how modules extend your base Drupal installation, then walks through how to write your own module with a practical example featuring geo-positioned alternative energy centers. The course also describes how to control access to site features, create new content types, build forms, understand data persistence, embrace coding standards, and much more.

Topics include:
  • Creating your first module
  • Interacting with hooks
  • Working with permissions and roles
  • Controlling access
  • Adding a menu item to an admin interface
  • Using the Form API (FAPI) to quickly create a form
  • Creating custom form validation
  • Manually creating a custom content type
  • Validating user input
  • Importing content using feeds
  • Creating a block
  • Understanding best practices and coding standards
Subjects:
Developer Web CMS Blogs Web Design Programming Languages Web Development
Software:
Drupal
Author:
Jon Peck

Next steps

This course is intended to provide a foundational knowledge of the Drupal infrastructure and API, providing context in a complex system. As such, there are a number of areas that can be explored further. Basic interactions with the Entity API were used to create a new content type. But what if a more lightweight and custom solution is necessary? The Entity API allows a developer to build a custom entity from the ground up without the overhead of nodes. To facilitate this, the entity project extends the core Entity API to reduce some of the complexities when creating new entity types.

There are a number of comprehensive examples and community managed documentation available through the project page of the extended Entity API. Throughout this course a simplified implementation of locations was built in order to demonstrate how to interact with various Drupal subsystems. While the wind farm content type provided stub location with geographic coordinates, this functionality can be extended much further and already has in the location module. While I demonstrated the potential for code reuse in a narrow context, the implementation of location-based services demonstrated was not intended to be a comprehensive solution.

To take the windfarm module to the next level, leverage the location API and take advantage of features such as full address support, geocoding and more. This course focused on functionality centric development within Drupal and with little exception did not cover theming and design. Drupal 7: Creating and Editing Custom Themes with Chaz Chumley here in the lynda.com online training library covers these design techniques in detail and provides context helpful for all Drupal developers, not just designers. Finally, if you use Drupal, consider getting involved with the Drupal community.

Drupal.org facilitates local user group meetings, conferences on regional, national and international scales, and much more. If there's a particular module that you use on a regular basis and you find an issue or an enhancement, submit an issue to the project homepage. By providing feedback, module developers can learn from your experience. Anyone can contribute patches to projects, which will be reviewed by the module maintainers and attributed to you if used. Check out drupal.org/contribute to find ways to get involved to the Drupal community.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Drupal 7 Custom Module Development.


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Q: gmap3_tools is not working the way I expected it to. What version of gmap3_tools should I be using?
A: Use the free exercise file containing the version of gmap3_tools used for recording; the published version of the module on drupal.org has changed since recording and is not backwards compatible.
Q: I attempted to run the Drupal site root from the project files, but the site isn't loading. Why not?
A: The Drupal configuration file in sites/default/settings.php contains database configuration specific to the environment used to record the movie. This may be different than your environment. Edit the file and search for "windfarms" - you may need to change the database host, username, password, db name and port to match your specific environment.
 
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