Drupal is software that uses the PHP programming language running on a web server and using a database (and the filesystem) to store content and code. Typically the web server is Apache with MySQL as the database and this is known as a LAMP implementation when run on the Linux operating system. Most Drupal sites run on this installation and most hosting providers supply this environment for running your Drupal sites.
There are instructions at the end of this document for installing LAMP (or WAMP/MAMP/XAMPP) onto your Apple Mac or Windows machine but there is no reason why you cannot install Drupal 7 directly onto a hosted server and do your development there.
Once your LAMP/WAMP/MAMP ifrastructure has been installed (see the end of this document for instructions), installation of Drupal can be as simple as extracting the Drupal installation into the htdocs folder of your Apache webserver or copying up into some hosted webspace. The following operations are required:
Copy the Drupal 7 installation into the default web folder (usually htdocs).
Create an empty database and make a note of the username and password.
Copy the default.settings.php file from the sites/default folder to settings.php and make writeable.
Run http://drupalsite/index.php and follow the instructions.
Some hosting providers give you a one-click installation for installing Drupal which will perform all the above operations and specialist Drupal hosting provders like Drupal Gardens and GetPantheon also do all this for you.
Create the Database
Many people use a web application called phpadmin to create a database and a user in preparation for the Drupal installation. You can also run the following script (the paths are for the XAMPP installation of MySQL):
cd \xampp\mysql\binmysqladmin -uroot -p
mysqladmin -uroot -p
create database drupal-07;
create user drupal7user@localhost identified by 'drupal7password';
grant all privileges on drupal-07.* to drupal7user@localhost;
You can run the Drupal installation from the web browser once the database has been set up. Simply navigate to http://drupalsite/index.php and select the standard profile and the installation language and see if everything is configured properly.
Now you can enter the database and the username and password and Drupal will go ahead and create the required tables within the database.
Drupal displays a final configuration page the most important part of which is the specification of the Site Maintenance (administrator) account which has full administration rights for configuring your site in the future. Best not to use your own username here so that you can log in seperately when editing content in the future. Using a predictable username here such as admin is also discouraged as it is easy to guess and leaves your account more vulnerable to a brute force hack attack. Do not forget the password !
You can also select the location of the website to set the time and proceed to the welcome page indicating that your site has been successfully configured.
You have an overlay menu at the top of the page in the default Drupal 7 installation once you are logged in as the site administrator with the same functionality available from the administration page at http://drupalsite/admin.
You can access most of the settings you already specified in the configuration section under the Site Information section and specify other characteristics such as taking the website offline and showing a message when you are working on development and installing modules. We will be referring back to this page throughout the course.
LAB - MAINTENANCE MODE AND REGIONAL SETTINGS
Search around the configuration page looking at all the options and make some notes and ask questions if there is something you need to understand. Feel free to change any of the settings but in particular please discover how to:
Set the website into maintenance mode change the maintenance message.
Change the date settings so that each user can specify their own time zone.
Also test and configure Clean URLS to see if your server allows you to rename node URLs to nice wordy names.