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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.
While modules vary tremendously in function, dependencies and configuration options, they all get on to your server in the same way. You need to download them to a modules folder and your Drupal installation on your server, which means you will need right level access to that folder. If you do not have it already talk to your system administrative before proceeding. First let's go and take a look at some of the different stages of modules because we need to get those only that are secure and reliable. At the bottom of each module description you will notice a list of releases this one has only one, but you will also notice it has a suffix. That suffix will either be alpha, beta, def or RC.
This one, for, example is alpha. Alpha is the stage before beta, and an alpha release means that it might be okay but we are really not sure about enough about it to release it to the general public even for testing. So, be careful with alpha releases. The second kind is beta, beta stage means that it is not quit ready for release, but the developers believe that it is secure enough to be tested by the general public. The third stage is known as dev. In this case the version is at dev. That means that it is still in its development and they do not recommend that you use on a production site. In fact it's only intended for the developers to use so that they can fix problems. Be extremely careful when using modules that are this stage.
Then we have RC. That means release candidate. It is the last stage before something becomes stable and release to the public as though it were a product. So the stage is go dev, alpha, beta, RC and then the final. Now that was gone through that, let's look at its specific Drupal module. To go to it we go to Durpal.org of course and then to Download Modules. We have decided to protect user by preventing online robots from easily collecting their email address. So even if a user types in firstname.lastname@example.org, it will appear on the site and in an obfuscated way. The module we want to add is called Spamspan. I'm going to just find it quickly by searching here and we find everywhere on the site where the words Spamspan appears. I am going to click on one and eventually I found the module.
I happen to know that this one is also in the security category. Once you get to a modules home page you will notice several things. First there will be a description of the module appear. The second thing is releases, as we described, and as you scroll down further you see quite a few resources, documentation, the license that governs the module and sometimes you can even try out a demonstration. Clicking on that will go to an outside web site where the module has been installed and you see actually how it works. I do recommend looking throughout the page, especially if you have any problems with the module. Very often you will find information that will help you through it.
Once you have read all of that all you need to do is download the module. You go up to the download link that is next to the version that you want, in our case the one for 6.X. Click on Download. Usually does not take very long, they are very small files, and then go to where ever you downloaded the file. In our case it is on the desktop. I will click on the Finder and say Hide Others and there is our file. I will double click on it and it expands into a folder. The next question is where do we put this folder? The obvious place is modules but that is not actually the best place to put third party modules. That location is reserved for modules that were installed by Drupal itself. If you put them in there, then they won't be undated when Drupal does its update process.
Instead, as with themes, you go into sites and then put it in either All, if you want it to be available for all sites on a multi site installation, or for our purposes we only need to put it into default. We will open that up and we will put it into a folder called modules. I should mention that you need to call this folder modules with a lower case M, just as you needed to called the themes, with the lower case T. There is one problem though. We cannot create that module folder until we make this directory writable. It's not at the moment because Drupal has locked it in order to protect the settings file. So, we are going to go up one level. Again, see we can see the default folder there, we will select it and then we will get info on that. On the Mac you go up to File > Get Info. On the PC you would right-click and select Properties.
You may have to enter your password in order to unlock that folder. We will do that here and then change Read Only back to Read and Write. We are going to change that back to Read Only before we are done. So, I am going to leave this window as a reminder. Now we go back into default. I will create a new folder and call it module and there we will put out Spamspan module. Very good. Now again I am going to go back and change that to Read Only and close it. Now, we go back to our Drupal interface, I will hit Command+Tab to go back to our browser. We can close our Download window, close the other windows we have open and switch to our site. As with any other module you would go to Administer and Modules and scroll down.
You may have noticed that there are these groups. This one is called Core Optional. This group of modules when you first install Drupal but they are necessary for installation. You can close this group if you like by clicking on the link. Core Required those that were installed by Drupal and you can not turn off because otherwise Drupal won't run. We will close that and we have our Spamspan right here. We still more information and this is very interesting. It tell you what it depends on, what other modules have to installed. Sometimes you will download a module and it will say, depends on such and such and it will say missing or disabled. You will have to obviously get that module or turn it on before this one will work. In this case we do not have to turn down any thing else. So, we will just click Enabled, Save Configuration and it is been turned on. The next step of course is to configure which we'll do by going to Administer and By Module, but we will get into that in another video.
When you see all that modules can do you will have to resist the temptation to just grab a bunch and enable them all. I sure know I do. But I recommend you download, install and then thoroughly test only one at a time before going on to another one. That will keep your site safe, stable, and secure.
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