Drupal is very powerful content management software. This post covers essential resources related to Drupal — the basics, modules, Drupal design inspiration, Drupal themes, tutorials, starter themes, blog editors and Drupal-projects.
1. The Basics
Just getting started with Drupal? Looking for some general resources to have bookmarked for when you need them? These resources will help you cover the basics of Drupal and provide documentation for much of your future work with the platform.
The Drupal home page and location for downloading the latest version.
If you’re new to Drupal or just looking to learn something new, this is a collection of helpful handbooks to keep at your side. A good place to start if you’re new to Drupal (written for Drupal 5).
Theme Developer’s Cheat Sheet (for Drupal 5)
A helpful PDF that you may want to refer to from time to time.
Get everything you need concerning the API from the official API reference.
Confused by some of the terms you’re reading about Drupal development? This post may clear some of that up.
A helpful resource for developers. You’ll be able to search the source code of thousands of Drupal modules and themes.
This post is a collection of other useful resources that may interest you. Some of them are written for older versions of Drupal.
When should you use WordPress and when should you use Drupal?
Drupal developers and users alike need to be familiar with modules (plug-ins). There are countless modules available for a wide variety of purposes. The collection here includes some basic resources for working with modules, and also some links to various popular and useful modules.
The main page for finding available modules, according to category.
Get the documentation on the modules that ship with Drupal core.
A community-powered rating and review service dedicated to helping you find the best Drupal modules for your project.
An open-source package of modules to help you set up an e-commerce website with Drupal.
One user’s choice of favorite modules.
If you’re looking for an easy way to create drop-down or expandable menus, try Nice Menus.
This module integrates Moxiecode’s popular TinyMCE WYSIWYG editor into a Drupal website for editing advanced website content.
This module makes it possible for users to show a different front page or splash page to visitors.
If you’re creating Drupal websites, you’ll want to be able to create friendly URLs. This module can help.
FlashVideo will expand the upload module to accommodate video uploads, plus it will automatically convert it to Flash format.
CCK allows you to add custom fields to nodes using a Web browser.
Help your website’s SEO with Global Redirect, which makes some subtle, but important, redirects.
Easily create contact forms, questionnaires, registration forms, surveys and polls with Webforms.
If you plan on developing modules, this is a must-read resource that will get you started.
3. Drupal Design Inspiration
When working on a Drupal-powered website, you may find it helpful and inspiring to see what others are doing with Drupal. Fortunately, there are some great resources for showing off the work of other designers.
The best source of Drupal design inspiration, with over 2,000 websites being showcased.
A social network to showcase Drupal-powered websites.
The blog of Dries Buytaert includes a number of inspirational Drupal websites.
Earlier this year, Six Revisions published a mini-gallery of inspirational Drupal websites.
Whether you’re looking for free themes to customize, premium themes to take your projects to the next level or places to distribute your own themes, the Drupal community has several options available.
Drupal.org includes a gallery of free themes that are available for download.
A marketplace of Drupal and WordPress themes, both free and premium.
Nine free themes to choose from.
Sells themes for Drupal 5 and 6.
A nice collection put together by Mashable.
If three-column themes are what you’re after, Mashable has another collection for you.
The Drupal community provides plenty of tutorials to teach you just about anything you want to learn about development with Drupal. Here is a categorized list of some excellent tutorials.
5.1 Developing Themes
This tutorial will explain the basic files that make up a Drupal theme and will help you code your first theme.
This is another tutorial that looks at the basics of building a Drupal theme and the files that are involved.
An awesome, in-depth tutorial from GoMediaZine that takes you the whole way through by building an example website for a band.
A standards-based approach to custom Drupal theme creation.
This is the first of a three-part series on taking a design from mock-up to fully-functional Drupal theme. Also see Part II: Site Setup, Content and Modules, Part III: Template Theming, Integration and Finishing Touches
If you’re a Drupal developer, chances are you’re familiar with installing modules. If you’re a new Drupal developer, here is a basic tutorial.
A look at how you can avoid duplicate content when using the forum module.
Instructions for using the theme generator module, which may save you a lot of time in development.
For those developing larger websites, scaling will often be a concern. This tutorial goes through some of the things you can do to help Drupal’s performance under pressure.
Looking to speed up a Drupal website? Try following these steps.
Learn how to better organize your content and use vocabularies, terms, menus and more.
An introduction on how to use Drupal’s taxonomy system.
SEO should be a consideration for any developer, and this post takes a look at how it applies specifically to Drupal-powered websites.
Learn about a few potential areas of duplicate content and how you can solve the problem.
A look at some customizations that can be made to the standard Drupal robots.txt file.
5.6 Forums and Wikis
If you want to take Drupal a bit further and use it to power a forum, read this tutorial.
This post takes you through the basic steps of setting up your own wiki.
A 10-step process for setting up a simple photo gallery.
This tutorial will show you how to build a Flickr clone powered by Drupal. (Note: this tutorial is 2 years old, but still interesting.)
A gallery that is built to be used by clients who need to create new galleries and upload images.
Effective navigation is key to any website. Here are some Drupal-specific tips for improved navigation.
A simple tutorial for improving the navigation on your website.
5.9 General Tips
This post contains links to screencasts on a variety of subjects on working with Drupal.
Learn how to use a custom front page, a stand-alone log-in page and more.
5.10 Other Tutorials
A useful tutorial if you want to use Drupal to build an online community.
On many projects, you may want to use a custom home page. This tutorial takes a look at a solution.
6. Drupal Starter Themes
Starter themes can save you a lot of time in development by eliminating some of the common tasks that you do with each new theme you create. If you’re always starting from scratch or customizing an existing theme, give a starter theme a shot and see if it improves your workflow and productivity.
Blueprint is a starter Drupal theme meant to make development of custom themes faster; alternative: Zengine Starter Blueprint Grid Theme
7. Blog Editors
A Firefox extension that will give you a blog editor within your browser.
BlogJet is a Windows blog client for managing multiple blogs. The cost is £29.95.
A popular free offline editor that supports a number of blogging platforms, including Drupal.
Ecto is a feature-rich desktop blogging client for Mac OS X. The price is $17.95, but there is a 21-day trial version.
8. Projects Related to Drupal
If you’re building an e-commerce website, Ubercart is an open-source solution that fully integrates your online store with Drupal.
Acquia is dedicated to making Drupal more useful for developers by providing value-added software products and services. One of their projects, Carbon, focuses on social publishing applications and making it easier to develop community-oriented websites.
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