The Drupal Experience

I’m have mostly completed installing Drupal. I’ve captured as best I can my experiences with it. Overall it took quite a while to figure it out… although I think I spent more time learning how to use a Mac and Unix, being a Windows user myself, than I did learning Drupal!

Overall the documentation and support on the internet for it is quite good. The Drupal documentation itself is currently undergoing an update for Drupal 7 – it seems to be a bit of a mess, but I was able to find a lot of good information there.

Here are the links I used for installing Drupal with MySql, Apache and PHP.

There was one typo in the documentation. It says to create a test PHP page, but the test page had invalid code. Here is a correct test page. Overall, PHP is an easy language to hack away with – I can understand it’s popularity.

<?php phpinfo(); ?>


Trying to create a custom theme from scratch was an epic fail. I figured it would be easy to take an existing HTML page and convert it, but that’s not the case. It was much easier to download one of the existing themes from the large selection of existing themes and make modifications to it..

No Built-in WYSIWYG editor?

While trying to create the first content page, it’s immediately apparent that there is no built-in WYSIWYG HTML editor! What a pain. A quick google shows that you can add a Drupal Module that adds the desired support. This lead me to hours of frustration trying to install CKEditor and CKFinder. HOURS! I eventually gave up and in desperation tried an alternative, but seemlingly less popular WYSIWYG client called… of all things WYSIWYG. It worked flawlessly. Use WYSIWYG – DO NOT USE CKEDITOR. This module is actually a module which supports any number of libraries of editors. I went with TinyMCE and IMCE (for file uploads) – they seemed to be popular and well supported.

I spent considerable time getting it setup on my Mac. I expected to run into permission issues when installing Drupal in a hosted environment – I’ve never done it, but I’ve read about permission issues that you need to deal with when hosting ASP.Net in a restricted environment. Overall, I had 3 or 4 major issues on my local Mac and … zero issues in the hosted environment!… so far. My web hoster uses cPanel which is excellent.


Installing UberCart is a work in progress. It’s a rather large beast I must say! I’m roughly half-way done at the moment. It required A LOT of other modules. A LOT… and it’s still not fully setup. Oh well, it appears to be a good product.

The site is still a work in progress, but overall Drupal is meeting my expectations.

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