Ten Drupal Tips for Beginners

    By Drupalindia

    Wish to build a powerful website and looking for a perfect platform? Then you must check out Drupal. Presently, it is among the leading content management systems prevailing in the market. So what if you are new to the respective framework, Drupal is an easy to understand and use platform. Nevertheless, we all stand as beginners at one or the other time; however, you are a lucky beginner as here are a few useful tips when you try your hand in Drupal.

    1. Read about Drupal before you actually start with it
    It’s good to create a sound base of knowledge before you actually play with Drupal modules. Just give a read to the ‘Pro Drupal Development’ book. The book will serve as a tutor and all those subjects that you wish to learn or know about Drupal are covered by the book. The second edition of the book will update you with all the basics of Drupal 6.
    2. You always have Google as helping hand
    Google, the most trusted search engine almost has an answer of all your queries. In situations when you are stuck badly with some issue, you can always copy paste it to Google. Trust me, you are not the only one trying it for the first time, as said before, we all are beginners at one point or the other. There are chances that someone earlier would have faced the same problem and might have been answered by some Drupal expert. 
    3. There are various sources for the right information
    Don’t just believe that if Google doesn’t have the answer then there is no answer. Google is not the only source for getting information about Drupal. Drupal is a big community and you can always post your issues on the forum of Drupal.org. Other places where you can indulge in a conversation to get the issue solved include Drupal IRC channels. 
    4. Practical learning
    Only a theoretical knowledge about Drupal will not work.  If you really want to learn Drupal then keep experimenting. Try installing new modules, experiment what they work and how they work. The more you do it practically, the more you learn it. 
    5. Start with a simple theme
    Drupal has a wide pool of themes, but it is recommended that you start with the one which is known for its simplicity. By simplicity I mean the theme which is technically less complicated. You can try the Zen theme, a simple yet powerful theme. It has all the features that are required to develop a highly functional site and at the same time its easy design makes the task simple for you. 
    6. Use the basic modules
    Like the wide pool of themes, Drupal has a huge collection of modules also. Now it’s not at all an easy task to chunk out the modules as per your specification. However, that is one of the most important tasks to be done, but before you get into specific modules you can start with a few basic modules that are must for building a site. Such modules are mentioned below:
    CCK – Content Construction Kit, for adding custom fields to the nodes
    Views – For customizing lists of content
    ImageCache – For setting up presets for image processing 
    Admin – For helping the admin in handling various links
    7. Use Firebug
    Firebug is one of the most powerful web development tools. It will help you in debugging jQuery and can also be used for theme development. It’s an easy way to modify the look and feel of your site. Well, this can be treated a general tip as you can use Firebug even if you are trying some other CMS. Yet, Firebug is an essential tool to simplify many of your tasks.
    8. Categorization for easy understanding
    It’s your site, so completely your call on how you organize your modules. However, this is very obvious that you don’t want any type of hassle in your site. Thus, to keep it simple and clutter free, it is recommended to maintain separate folders for different types of modules. Make a different folder for custom and contributed modules; this will simplify the task for you. Further, it will make it easy for other developers undertaking your project. 
    9. Socialize with the Drupal Community
    As mentioned earlier also, Drupal is a big community and as a beginner you can always learn a lot from the former. Drupal community loves to socialize and thus, organizes various events now and then. All you need to do is check out a Drupal event happening near you and attend it. A face to face interaction with the Drupal experts will help you in the long run.
    10. If you can’t meet them in real-time, then time for online socializing
    Social media sites have cut down the distance between two people. Thus, if you are unable to interact with Drupal developers in the real world, you can connect them on social media sites. The Drupal contributors will be happy to help you. 
    Drupal is quite easy to learn, it's just that in the beginning you might face little troubles. However, now you have these simple tips to follow and solve your problems.


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      Drupal India is an award winning online identity management firm specializing in all aspects of Drupal design, Drupal development and Drupal consulting.


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