Setting up a Drupal website

This is a guide on setting up Drupal content management system on localhost. This guide is the second part tutorial on how to build a website using Drupal cms. You can read the first tutorial in Drupal installation on windows tutorial and Setup and configure Drupal 6 in Slackware Linux tutorial.

We will be taken to the first page, the Drupal welcome page(as screenshot example below)when we click 'You may now visit your new site.' link at the 'Drupal installation complete' page (refer the first tutorial). One thing to note at this point, you are now officially log in as administator or super user.

Setting up drupal website screenshot image

There are several steps that supposed to guide a first time user to begin using Drupal. We will do all those with step by step instructions in this tutorial. Let's do that now if you are ready.

Configure your website - Once logged in, visit the administration section, where you can customize and configure all aspects of your website.

What we need to do here is to click the 'administration section' link to administrator home page, which is where we can configure our drupal website. Here is the screenshot example of the administrator section page:

Drupal Administer page screenshot image

There are 5 main menus in the Drupal administration section. Here are brief explanation of each menu:

1) Content management - Manage your site's content. Here is where you can manage your posts, other user's comments and everything related to the content.

2) User management - Manage your site's users, groups and access to site features. You can create a new user, manage users and groups access and permission and other stuff related to the user management.

3) Reports - View reports from system logs and other status information. You can see reports on your website here such as errors, visitor details and update available for Drupal core and modules.

4) Site building - Control how your site looks and feels. Here is where you can customize your website looks. You can change theme, add and remove side bar, create and remove menu, and add modules (extensions).

5) Site configuration - Adjust basic site configuration options. Here is where you control everything else.

Configure Drupal website

Drupal add new user

Now that we already know the basic structure of Drupal's administration menu, we can start configure our Drupal website. The first thing that we should do is to create a new user account. Let's treat our Drupal the same as Linux. We'll create a new user in Drupal and give the user administrator privilege. Here are the step by step instructions:

Click Users menu under User management. In the Users page, choose 'Add user'. See example screenshot below:

Drupal add user screenshot image

Fill in all the requirements. We are going to create a user with administrator privilege, so remember to create a strong password. Make sure you get a green 'High' for the 'Password strength' status. Mix your password text with uppercase, numbers and special characters. For Username, spaces are allowed; punctuation is not allowed except for periods, hyphens, and underscores.

Drupal add user fill in all requirements screenshot image

When you are done, click 'Create new account'.

Drupal add roles and assign permissions

We have a new user, so now we must give him some administrative privileges. To do this, open Roles menu under 'User management'. Type the new role's name for example 'admin' and click Add role button.

Drupal add roles screenshot image

To assign permissions for the new role, click 'Edit permissions' or open Permissions menu under 'User management'.

Assign permission to the new role screenshot image

Tick all permissions in the menus checkbox and click 'Save permissions' when you're done.

Assign permission save configuration screenshot image

Site configuration

We configured most of our website during the Drupal installation stage. Now, we can configure some more. Let's look at the Site configuration menu. The first menu, Actions, just leave it for now.

The next menu, Administration theme is where you change your administrative pages look which means the look is for you not for the visitors. You can change to a different theme if you want but there is nothing wrong with the default theme.

The menu Clean URLs is already configured during Dupal installation. But you can enable or disable clean URLs for your site here (you need to disable it during Drupal core update). For now, just leave it alone.

The next menu is Date and Time, where you can choose whict date and time format that you want. You can just accept the default and go to the next menu, Error reporting, which you need to specify the error pages for default 403 (access denied) page and default 404 (not found) page. Named it 403 and 404 respectively and save configuration. We need to create the error page later.

Skip all unnecessary changes and head to the Input formats menu. This menu affect the text editor we used to create content in drupal. I change to the Full HTML format here because I write my content in full html format. You have to decide it for yourself.

The next menu that we need to look at is the Site information. You can change your site name and email address that you set during installation here. Also, you can set site's motto, tag line, or catchphrase (often displayed alongside the title of the site) in the Slogan textbox. Most importantly, you can set your website's mission or focus statement which often prominently displayed on the front page. Finally, set a footer message. A disclaimer for your website is a good idea. Here's an example screenshot:

Drupal site configuration screenshot image

That's it for site information. Save configuration when you are done. The final menu, Site maintenance is where you can put your website offline during maintenance period. That's all for the Site configuration.

Planning a website and create menu

We must properly plan on how to present our content to the visitors. For example, we are going to make a website about Linux. We must have a category for every related content subject such as 'Linux commands', 'Linux servers', 'Linux security' and etc. Under Linux commands, we can further categories our content such as Linux basic commands, Linux administration commands, Linux network commands, and so on. For the Linux servers category, we can have DNS server, dhcp server, FTP server, and etc. You should plan your website too. When you are ready, we can start create menus for our website.

We can do this in Drupal using Menus which can be found under 'Site building' menu. In the Menus page, select 'Add menu'.

Drupal add menu screenshot image

In the Menu name, key in the first category for your website. In this example, it is 'linux-commands'. Make sure the name contain only lowercase letters, numbers, and hyphens, and must be unique. This is the machine-readable name of this menu. The name will be used for constructing the URL of the menu overview page for this menu. In the Title, put a normal 'Linux commands' (this will appear in the website menu) and in the Description, type a brief explanation about this menu. See example screenshot below:

Add menu example screenshot image

When you are done, click Save. You'll be taken to the new menu page. Don't do anything here, not yet. Click 'Menus' link from the left sidebar menu. Create all categories that you need using the same method above.

Drupal new menu created screenshot image

Create another menu using the Menus link from the left sidebar.

Create menu link from sidebar screenshot image

That's all for now. We'll continue setting up Drupal website in the next tutorial.

What i understood from your

What i understood from your instructions is that Drupal is highly configurable and can be used in a variety of ways, so it does not come with a complete configuration for basic users. Thanks!

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