Migrating to Drupal
As we write this article, Drupal's next release, version 4.7.0 is in beta. Improvements include a better default theme engine, refined search functions, improved PostgreSQL support, themeable forms, Ajax-enhanced administration interface and a better upgrade script. Also promising is the development of the CCK that could, along with actions, workflow and views modules, make Drupal even more flexible and powerful.
Some people in the Drupal community predict that the trend to watch in 2006 is the emergence of application-specific Drupal distributions—re-packaged versions of Drupal catering to a particular need. One such distribution is CivicSpace, a community organizing platform popular with grass-roots organizations, nonprofits and political campaign Web sites. CivicSpace provides a Web-based installer and a configuration wizard that sets up Web sites for common-use scenarios. It includes a selection of Drupal modules relevant to running community organizing Web sites so you don't have to research, download and install individual modules. CivicSpace also includes CiviCRM, a Web-based constituent relationship management application that offers features, such as on-line fund raising, contact management, tracking volunteers, donors and clients. Efforts are underway to develop similar distributions for educators and artists.
We have used Drupal for several different types of projects, including corporate, collaborative, intranet and academic Web sites. What makes Drupal so versatile?
According to its founder Dries Buytaert, Drupal aims to provide “a solid base to extend and implement custom content management solutions”. This may be one of the reasons for its popularity. It strives to be a content management platform that enables developers and users to customize their own unique solutions based on Drupal's core engine. Drupal's modular architecture has resulted in several interesting community-contributed modules. These modules often connect Drupal to other popular programs or services, opening up interesting and unexpected possibilities.
It's true that non-programmers can achieve a lot with Drupal simply by tweaking configurable options. Those with modest HTML or PHP experience can customize themes and layouts or use snippets of code shared by the community on Drupal's Web site. And, of course, PHP experts can create their own custom modules and tweak Drupal as much as they like.
However, its extensibility and flexibility also have made Drupal more complex. The solution you are looking for may be found in a particular combination of modules, configured in a certain way, using a well-crafted taxonomy and carefully thought-out user permissions. Drupal is capable of addressing complex content management needs, but tapping its potential does require a deep understanding of how it works.
What is admirable about Drupal is that it makes it possible—to a certain degree, without writing any code—to shape a diverse range of Web-based solutions built on the same core content management platform. And, it achieves this while remaining true to its stated principles of standards-compliance and collaborative open-source development. Drupal may not have a perfect solution for each problem, but it can meet a lot of different content management needs reasonably well. Ultimately, what matters is that Drupal helps people, whether they are programmers or non-programmers, large organizations or individuals, tap into the collaborative potential of the Web.
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Abhijeet Chavan is the Chief Technology Officer of Urban Insight, Inc., a Web development consulting firm. He also is the co-founder and co-editor of Planetizen.
Michael Jelks is a Senior Developer at Urban Insight, Inc., with more than 37 dog years of experience implementing Web-based applications with Perl, PHP and MySQL technologies.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
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- Stunnel Security for Oracle
- The Firebird Project's Firebird Relational Database
- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
- Murat Yener and Onur Dundar's Expert Android Studio (Wrox)
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- My +1 Sword of Productivity
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
- Google's SwiftShader Released
- SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide