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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.
The wise designer builds for the best, but plans for the worst. This video will show you a few tricks to get the site up in running if you encounter a few common, but very easy fix, problems. First of all, we have to repeat, your best defense is to back-up to both the Drupal files and the site database regularly and be sure you know how to restore from a backup. We will tell you how to do that in two separate videos in this series. Backing up your Drupal site and restoring your Drupal site from backup, but deleting and restoring your site is really an atom bomb, sort of, option; it destroys everything and then tries to recreate it. Let's look at some other ways to recover from disaster at times when you don't need to restore the entire site.
The first one is let's say that you have taken the site off-line and I will show you how to do that by going to Administer, scroll down to the bottom, and click on Site maintenance, and then take the site Off-line like this, and Save configuration. Good and then let's say that you accidentally log out, oh! Oh! The site is off-line and there is no place that I can go to to log in. There are no login boxes here. Well, we can enter a little code up here which is ?q=user. That's the log in page and from there you can do admin, and your password, and there we are, we are back in. Now if you do that the first thing you should do is go back to Administer, and down to the bottom at Site maintenance, and put it back Online if indeed you want it to be Online for everybody; and of course Save configuration as always.
Let's say you are having some other problems, like you feel that you should be able to get to a page but you can't get there. The first solution is the obvious one; are you logged in as the administrator or are you logged in as the correct person. If, for example, one of your editors has two or three different accounts, they have to make sure that they are logged into the account that gives them the permissions they believe that they should have, but it may also be an issue on the administrator's side and here I will give you an example. I am going to switch over to Firefox, where I am logged in as ordinary user fishyjoe and let's say that you have talked with fishyjoe and said, "Hey! Yeah I like your ideas, why don't you put them in a blog post?" and fishyjoe says, "Okay," I will go down to Create Content. "Wait, there is no place to create a blog post, it is just Pages and Stories why can't I do that? And you as the administrator say, "Well I know that I enabled that module". Let's go back and take a look. Go in to Administer and Modules and indeed it's enabled why isn't it working? Well let's find out by going Administer and By modules and we see Blog. Ah! That's right the Permissions. So let me check those Permissions, go back up to Blog, we didn't allow people of his user level to create blog entries. So we will check that. We scroll down to the bottom, click Save Permissions. Now let's go back and see if fishyjoe can actually create blogs. Click again on Create Content and there is our Blog Entry link.
A third kind of error occurs when the administrator knows that they have downloaded the module that they want to enable, but has forgotten to enable it. Let's go back to our administrator interface and see what that looks like. Click on Administer and Modules and as you could see you first need to make sure that it's enabled. It may just be something as simple as checking a box, but once you have done it, of course, you go down to the bottom and you say Save Configuration, but there is more to it than that. Click on Administer and I will show, then go to By module.
Some modules have more than just one configuration screen and in fact as you download more and more modules you will see that some have as many as four of five administration screens each with their own peculiarities and maybe even multiple permissions. You have to go through the module, read the manual, and see exactly what has to happen in order to enable that module. Finally, you might have a problem with an individual page and let's go back to our homepage to give an example of that. Here we have the front-page content and this is stored as a page. We are going to edit that page and it looks fine.
We saw it on our front page, but let's say that while were publishing this we had an itchy finger and accidentally (ph ) unclicked Published and click on Save. Then we go back to our homepage it's disappeared; of course, it's disappeared because it hasn't been published. One way to find out what has and hasn't been published is to go Administer, Content, and then take a look along here. Click on it, it says not published. You could publish it again by just clicking there and clicking on Update and Publish there. And of course you can make other changes such as promoting it to the front page, demoting it from the front page, and so forth. What I would also recommend you do, if you are having problems with any sort of content is go into the content itself and Edit it and look at all of the turned down triangles; click on all of these little links and see the options available.
Maybe something has been posted by the wrong author and you need to change that, or it's allowing comments when you don't want or something like that; just check them all and then click on Save. What if you have something that you can't solve through the administrative interface? Then you might need to poke around the database. We are going to open up our SQL database by going to MAMP, Open start page, and phpMyAdmin. WAMP has a similar setup but your ultimate goal is to get to phpMyAdmin. We will go to the Drupal database. The Drupal database has many, many tables.
We won't talk about all of them because that's a very advanced subject, but we will talk about one table that's very useful to know which are users. We will scroll down to users, click on this icon to browse the users table; and as we scroll down we can see all of the different users were in the database. User 0 is a system user that isn't an actual person who can log in, but all of the others are. The admin who is the superuser with user ID 1 and then the regular users, fishyjoe and fishysue. Let's say that the administrator doesn't remember the password and he has changed the email address so they can't receive the password. Click on the pencil icon and there is field here called pass. To set a new password we highlight that and delete it and enter something else. We'll just say door and then you need to choose a kind of encryption, which for Drupal is usually MD5.
Scroll to the very bottom and then click on Go and we have changed our Password. If we go back and take another look at that password you will see it doesn't show up as door. It actually shows up as an encrypted string that's good because it means someone can't just go and look at the passwords if they get into your database. They can change them, but they can't look at them. I am going to change it back to booth and I am going to change this. So it's encrypting and then, of course, Save. The good news is you usually won't have to poke around in the database like this. If you forget your administrator password and let's Log out of our administrator, so we can see what's it's like. All you need to do is say Request new password and then enter your Username or email address admin, Email New Password and it sends you the new password. If that email address isn't working, however, you have to go into the database.
Finally, some errors are very hard to figure out; for example, you call up a certain page and it simply doesn't appear. One common problem is that your php.ini file doesn't have enough memory. We showed you how to change that in the downloading, unpacking, and installing Drupal video. They say you can build a better mousetrap but nature will just build a better mouse. Obviously, we can't discuss all the ways your mousetrap could break, but these few tricks will get you out of lot of jambs.
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