Using memcache? You should be.

Adding memcache to a Drupal site will massively increase the performance (x2 is not unusual).

Here's a basic configuration (add this to the settings.php configuration) - more to follow soon!

Drupal performance tutorial at PHPNW 7 October

The PHP North-West conference is an annual conference favourite of mine...This year they're running a tutorial day for the first time - and I'm pleased to say I'm running a tutorial on Drupal performance (and the tools we use to make Drupal faster).

I'll be talking about topics including:

Hacking contextual links in Drupal 7

Drupal 7 comes with some cool new tools like contextual links

Contextual links are added to blocks using hook_block_view or hook_block_view_alter:

Building a WYSIWYG plugin in Drupal

As developers, we usually praise and curse WYSIWYG editors equally. They all suffer from issues, but they're usually better than the alternative - trying to convince clients and content editors to use raw HTML? Not likely!

These usually work with input filters: say for example, you have a YouTube plugin which lets you enter a video ID and embeds the video in the post.

Customising the labels on radio-buttons

Thought I'd quickly blog about this whilst this is fresh in my head!

Sometimes you want to add detail to a set of radio-buttons - e.g. you may want to show an example image below the radio-button's label:

Choose cable connection
( ) VGA
    [ pic of VGA cable ]

( ) DVI
    [ pic of DVI cable ]

( ) DisplayPort
    [ pic of DisplayPort cable ]

Overriding URLs with Drupal panel pages

Hi, My name's Marcus, and I'm addicted to Drupal panels.
(For those of you who haven't come across this wonderdrug before, panels is a layout-engine for Drupal: it lets you add and lay out content, blocks, views and other panels on the page. And it's awesome!)

Panels has a UI which lets you setup new panel pages: e.g. you could add the URL /jobs for your jobs listing page.

A set of system URLs can also be overridden: e.g. node/%node can be overridden to use a panel-page instead of the core node_page_view function.

Anti-virus for Drupal sites

Anti-virus is a subject that's drummed into us continually, bombarded as we are by a constant barrage of infected emails, exploits, attacks on web-servers.

Your server may well be firewalled, patched, protected by strong passwords and all the rest, but many Drupal sites have an attack-vector left wide open: file uploads.

Drupal and Varnish - a quick intro

Varnish is a HTTP accelerator (or reverse proxy) capable of serving 100,000 requests a second. Somewhat faster than Drupal, even with page-caching on!

How does it work?

Diagram of the varnish process, explained in more detail in the list below.

Panels magic

I love unexpected discoveries.

Drupal's Panels module seems to find its way into most of my site builds, along with custom layouts, panel-panes and all sorts of goodness.

I used to declare custom panel layouts this way:

Drupal and the spirit of openness

So what does it take to get accepted around here?
I've started this post to kick off a discussion about the Drupal database abstraction layer, and how to encourage support for other databases.


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