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This course teaches web site designers how to take their sites to the next level with a few advanced techniques and the free and open-source Drupal software. Author Tom Geller shows how to configure the most popular add-on modules; use *nix commands and an FTP program to manage a Drupal site on a web server; change its visual appearance using the latest graphical tools; automate and speed through common tasks with Drush; integrate with social media sites; and see how "supermodules" like Panels, Context, Rules, and Features open up new worlds of code-free development.
Drupal 7 Advanced Training was designed as a follow-up to Drupal 7 Essential Training and it also dovetails nicely with our other Drupal courses, such as Drupal 7 Reporting and Visualizing Data and Create Your First Online Store with Drupal Commerce.
In the four years that I've been making Drupal videos for lynda.com, I keep getting the same questions. It's not that there is anything specific to lynda.com students, but rather they are just repeating the questions that a lot of Drupal users face at one time or another. Here are the top five. Number one, I can't get Acquia Dev Desktop to work, so I can start building a site on my local computer. This one often shows up when you first install Acquia Dev Desktop. It has a lot of causes, and quite honestly I've given up trying to figure them all out. Instead, I have a simple solution, just remove Acquia Dev Desktop from your computer, and then reinstall it. If we go back to our desktop and find the program, you'll see that it sometimes called acquia-drupal.
That's the way it's installed by default on the Mac here in the Applications folder. If you open up that folder, you'll see it actually comes with an uninstall program. So that's a lot better than just dragging it to trash. The one problem with that is that you may lose the work that you've already created with Acquia Dev Desktop. That's because Acquia Dev Desktop stores the databases in a peculiar place. But if you haven't started building your site yet, you won't lose anything, and the trick works pretty often. If you have started building it though that leads us to the second problem. Help.
I just lost all my work. The solution here is a little forethought. Just make regular backups especially of your site's database. I've recently started using the Backup and Migrate module for that because it has an automated backup schedule. You can get that module by going to drupal.org/project/backup_migrate. I have a video about using this module later on in the course. I also have another one about using Drush, which is a command-line program that also has a backup function.
Going on toward our third common problem. My site is down, and I don't understand the error message! For this, copy a section of the error message's text and then do a search on it, both on the drupal.org site and then also in a general search engine such as Google. You'll want to pick a section of the error that's descriptive but generic. Let's look at an example. Here is an error that somebody came across and they posted the issue to the drupal.org site, and down here you see exactly what they saw on their screen, a really big ugly error.
Well, if I wanted to solve this, I simply copy a little bit of the text here, go into Google and do a search, and actually as you can see from the highlighted one this first hit is what actually gives the answer. You might want to add some quotes on it though, if you get too many things that lead to the wrong place because there could be other programs such as WordPress or Joomla that have the same error. So you'll have to play around a bit. But I've found that this works very well at figuring out such errors. Sometimes, however, you get errors that don't stop your site from working but they do keep throwing warnings up on your screen.
To solve this, there are several things you can try. The first one is to clear your browser's cache. Here in Safari you'll find that under Safari > Empty Cache. In Firefox it's a little bit more complicated, you have to go up to Tools, and then Clear Recent History, click a few buttons, look at the details and so forth. If you have a problem in doing this, just look at the documentation for the browser that you're using. The second thing to try is to clear the site's cache. We do that by going into a site. Here I have my own site up, tomgeller. com. Go up to Configuration, then down to Performance, and then click the button Clear all caches -- that often solves the problem.
The third thing to check is to make sure that your site's code is up to date. You do that by going up to Reports and then to Available updates. My site is already up to date, but if you see anything over here that's a yellow warning sign or especially a red X that means it is actually a security problem. But in any case you want the latest copy of all of the things you're using. From there if you do find anything, you would click Update and then follow the procedure that you saw in Drupal 7 Essential Training. The fourth thing to try is to run update .php; easy enough to do, you just go up to your domain name/update.php and continue the procedure again as you saw in Drupal 7 Essential Training.
That brings us to the last kind of issue that people come across, and I have no better way to describe it than GAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH! When this happens to you, relax; talk to the community. They are very helpful really, for tips on how to do that, See the video "Getting help with Drupal issues" in my course Drupal 7 Essential Training. Finally, I'd like to point you to a part of the drupal.org site that's set up specifically to help you through such problems. A little reading, a little communication, and a little sleuthing will almost certainly lead you to the light.
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