10+ Drupal Terms

If you are looking for a CMS that is easy to use and has great features, then Drupal may be the right option for you. There are many common terms in Drupal that you will need to know before diving into this content management system. In this blog post, we will discuss 7 important terms and acronyms related to Drupal.

Common Drupal terms

  • CMS: Content management system. Drupal is a content management system.
  • Node: Content types in Drupal are called “nodes”. For example, the node type for blog posts in WordPress would be “post” and in Drupal it’s simply known as “node.” Therefore there is no separate term for blog post nodes. All nodes have some metadata associated with them (e.g., title). Nodes also require fields to organise information (e.g., author name), create relationships between data entities (e.g., tags), add comments or discussion areas on your site so visitors can interact with your content, and more.
  • Taxonomy: A taxonomy is a collection of terms that are related to each other- for example, all the words in an English dictionary. Drupal uses “tags” as one type of taxonomy; tags can be any word or phrase and they’re used to categorise content on your site.
  • Vocabulary: A vocabulary defines specific types of nodes such as blog posts or pages.
  • Term: A term is a node that belongs to one vocabulary, for example the “taxonomy” type of tag.
  • Block: Blocks are used as part of the layout on your page and can include anything from adding social media buttons in specific areas such as at the top right corner of an article, displaying ads around content blocks (e.g., sidebar), enabling comments, providing RSS feed links or inserting widgets like Flickr photos into other parts of your site.*
  • Fields: Fields allow you to organise information about nodes into related groups; they’re similar to fields found in databases where data has been organised via tables.
  • Entity: Entities are defined by their metadata and can include nodes and users. A good way to think about how Drupal stores information is by thinking about ‘nodes’. For example, if you wanted to store information about a blog post node (e.g., author name), then in Drupal that data would be stored as fields within the ‘blog post’ node.
  • Views: Views allow you to create custom listings of content on your site; they’re similar to tables stored in databases except instead of storing just one dataset such as all blogs posts for a year or all customers with overdue invoices, views enable usernames, passwords etc.). A view will not contain any actual content but is an interface for displaying sorted lists from different datasets.
  • CCK – Content Construction Kit- this module enables admins to create content types by defining fields and relationships between the entity.
  • Region: Regions control how a block displays on your site; you can specify which pages that block should appear on, show it only in specific areas of your website or not show up at all.
  • Menu: Menus are used to organise links for navigation purposes such as ‘home’, ‘about us’ etc.; menus also have tabs that help navigate between different sections of your website (e.g., from blog posts to about us).
  • Module: The core modules are built into Drupal which cannot be disabled but can be supplemented with contributed modules from third parties who want to add features that the default Drupal installation lacks (e.g., if you need an image gallery module).
  • Theme: A theme defines how a website will look; themes come bundled with different layouts designed specifically for desktop screens, tablets, smartphones and other devices such as wearables.

In Drupal terminology, there is no separate term for blog post nodes because any type of node can be considered a “blog post” when displayed on our sites. There are three core modules built into Drupal- Views, CCK and Blocks- which cannot be disabled but can be supplemented with contributed modules from third parties who want to add features that the default Drupal installation lacks.

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