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Blair Wadman: How to backup your Drupal database to Amazon S3

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 10:31am

We all know the importance of backing up the database for each Drupal site we build and maintain. But it is not uncommon for this to be put on the back burner and never actually implemented. Fortunately, it is really easy to setup with a combination of Amazon S3 and Backup and Migrate. In this tutorial, you will be shown how to set this up so that it runs on auto pilot.

Tags: Drupal Site buildingPlanet Drupal

Tyler Frankenstein: Drupal Commerce Order Owner Autocomplete with E-mail Address

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 9:59am

When creating an order as an admin in Drupal Commerce, we can specify the user that owns the order if we know their user name. This works well in most cases, but to be able to search by the user's e-mail address would be helpful too. I've had a few requests from clients for this feature. So without further ado, let's ado it!

/** * Implements hook_menu(). */ function my_module_menu() { $items = array(); $items['my_module/commerce/order-owner/autocomplete'] = array( 'page callback' => 'my_module_commerce_order_owner_autocomplete', 'access arguments' => array('configure order settings'), 'type' => MENU_CALLBACK ); return $items; } /** * Implements hook_form_FORM_ID_alter(). */ function my_module_form_commerce_order_ui_order_form_alter(&$form, &$form_state, $form_id) { // Attach our custom autocomplete to the order owner name input so we can // search by e-mail address. $form['user']['name']['#autocomplete_path'] = 'my_module/commerce/order-owner/autocomplete'; } /** * Queries results for the commerce order owner autocomplete. */ function my_module_commerce_order_owner_autocomplete($string) { $matches = array(); $query = db_select('users', 'u'); $query ->fields('u', array('uid', 'name', 'mail')) ->condition(db_or() ->condition("u.mail", '%' . db_like($string) . '%', 'LIKE') ->condition("u.name", '%' . db_like($string) . '%', 'LIKE') ) ->condition('u.uid', 0, '<>') ->range(0, 10); $results = $query->execute(); foreach ($results as $row) { $key = "$row->name"; $matches[$key] = "$row->name - $row->mail ($row->uid)"; } drupal_json_output($matches); }

Freelock : Why tech work is so hard to estimate

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 7:57am

"Hey, since the upgrade, I can't use the power edit feature anymore!" came the request. Ok. There have been several different upgrades over the past few months. The menu editor module has been updated. The server has been upgraded. The site is in heavy use, so there are lots of content changes.

EstimatingProject ManagementDrupal Planet

Vasily Yaremchuk: Turn off maintenance mode on separate paths in Drupal 7

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 6:32am

We have faced with the problem. We use Ajax Login/Register module but put site in Maintenance mode.

But we need to have Sign up ability. Ajax Register module show Sign up form in popup, content is requested from "ajax_register/register". But in maintenance mode we can see Maintenance page response...

But fortunately we have hook_menu_site_status_alter. Thus we can turn off Maintenance mode in our module on separate path:

<?php
function ajax_register_fix_menu_site_status_alter(&$menu_site_status, $path) {
  if ($menu_site_status == MENU_SITE_OFFLINE && user_is_anonymous() && $path == 'ajax_register/register') {
    $menu_site_status = MENU_SITE_ONLINE;
  }
}
?>

This is content of ajax_register_fix.module custom module.

Blog tags:

Deeson: Drupal's Picture element and Image Field Focus for mobile images

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 5:51am

We know people get really frustrated when images viewed on desktop look great but are hard to see on a mobile device.

In this blog, I’ll show you how to use the Picture and Image Field Focus modules to crop images for display on desktop, tablet and mobile and make the lives of content creators easier.

It means goodbye to preparing several images for optimum display across all devices and hello to just one image upload and smart image crop control.

The new Drupal Picture element

Picture is a new(ish) HTML5 element which allows different images to be displayed for different devices and also for retina displays. Handy.

This means mobile users no longer have to download images optimised for desktop display when the image is displayed on a much smaller screen. 

How Picture works

Picture considers the way images are served and the needs of content creators, including:

  • Size: Images are often served optimised for desktop and then mobile devices reduce them to size. This means that mobiles are often downloading more data than they need to.
  • Art direction: For some images it would be better if the image was cropped for mobile display. This is called the ‘art direction’ use case, and I recommend reading this article over here
  • Image quality: Using <picture> images can be served at a higher pixel density, which means higher quality images can be served for retina devices.
Picture's HTML and browser support

The picture element at its most basic looks like this:

<picture>  <source media="(max-width: 480px)" srcset="mobile.jpg"> <source media="(max-width: 768px)" srcset="tablet.jpg">  <img src="fallback.jpg" alt=""> </picture>

You can see it's been spec'd out by the responsive images community group http://responsiveimages.org/.  It's supported in Chrome 38, implemented in Firefox 33, and can be tested by tweaking FireFox’s settings.  Microsoft is considering supporting it, and Safari hasn’t confirmed their status yet.

If a browser doesn’t support the Picture element, the HTML degrades gracefully and the fallback <img> is displayed. There is also a well-supported, and tested, polyfill - picture fill - on GitHub.

The Picture module

The good news is that Drupal already has a Picture module which includes the picture fill js library. It has a dependency on the breakpoints module.

To set up Picture, you need to setup your breakpoints first (/admin/config/media/breakpoints).  Each breakpoint needs a name and a media query. I've set up my breakpoints to match the Bootstrap breakpoints. For example, I've got a Mobile breakpoint with a media query '(max-width: 480px)' - see image to the left.

Once that's all sorted, you need to setup images styles for each breakpoint.

To setup Picture, install the module and go to /admin/config/media/picture/list. This page lists all the picture displays you have setup. Click 'Add', select the breakpoints you want this picture display to use, and select an image style for each breakpoint - see left.

Once you have a picture display set up, you'll be able to select picture as a display field formatter for an image field. You can then display different images for mobile, tablet and desktop!

Image Field Focus

Some people worry that the art direction use case places a large administrative burden on content editors, as it means preparing several images instead of just one.

You can avoid this if you use Image Field Focus - content admins select a focus area and a crop area for each image and image field focus does the rest, which is a lot less hassle all round.

In the example I've cropped out the person stood on the right, which is represented in the outer selected area. The inner selected area has become the focus area. 

Essentially, any image created will be from within the crop area and will always contain the focus area. The focus area will be, where possible, in the middle of the picture.

In our example, the paragliders in the air might be to small to see if the full image was scaled down to be displayed on mobile. I’ve added a focus area around one of the paragliders so when a mobile optimised image is created it will be a close up image of this area.

To setup image field focus you'll need to enable it for each field you want to use it on.

Defining images styles

When you define your images styles, you need to add the Focus Scale And Crop style - see left. I've set up three distinct image styles, one for each breakpoint, see image below. If you want to more detail on setting up images styles, read this.

What do you think?

Hopefully you can see that the Picture and Image Field Focus modules work together as a great combination!  

We asked our marketing and content team what they thought and they said, “This is literally the best thing since sliced bread.” 

Clemens Tolboom: The state of ReST in Headless Drupal 8

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 12:37am

One of the Drupal 8 initiatives was to make "headless" Drupal core work out of the box. Drupal now has a ReST API.

This allows you to use all the Drupal 8 features to edit your content but present the content not only on a Drupal frontend but also on mobile apps or anything else that can work with JSON data.

Cocomore: Field collections exposed

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 12:03am

Field collections is a nice contributed module that extends the default Drupal entity functionality by creating a new entity field that can be composed by other fields. With this module we solve problems like creating complex entities where we want to store multiple different values into one single field.

read more

Deeson: Drupal Panels setup for clean markup

Drupal News - October 9, 2014 - 12:00am

It’s a fact that you get a hideous amount of markup with the Panels module straight out-of-the box, even if you use it to create a single column page without changing any of the options.

This is because each layer of the rendering process brings its own markup to the party. 

Panels and layers

Panels are structured in layers, which is what makes them so flexible for any given requirement. Within a layout sit the regions and inside these are panes.

Each of these panes are configurable by providing CTools plugins. You can render panes and regions with style plugins and the layout with a layout plugin.

Each of these layers have their own wrapping markup and things can get excessive quickly. 

Help is at hand

Luckily for us, there’s quite a lot of help for Panels straight out-of the-box. Firstly, there’s a ‘naked’ style plugin which drops all the wrapping markup and can be applied to your panes and regions. While this is a good start, the layout will still need markup specific to the site’s theme.

You can override each Panels layout as it’s presented by a theme hook. It’s literally as simple as copying a template to your site. 

For most simple panels, it’s just a case of copying the panels-onecol.tpl.php file into the theme and customising it. 

If you’re using a CSS framework or grid system (we use Bootstrap at Deeson) then this file is where you can re-work the markup to be specific to the system you are using.

My Panels page

Keeping all this in mind, I’ve created a simple Panels page which lists recent content to authenticated users. It’s built from a bean, a view (with an access rule) and some custom markup. It uses the one col layout.

Here’s my oh-so-simple panels-onecol.tpl.php file in my theme:

<div class="panel-display panel-1col clearfix" <?php if (!empty($css_id)) { print "id=\"$css_id\""; } ?>> <?php print $content['middle']; ?> </div>

And here’s the markup you’ll get when viewed as an unauthenticated user:

<section id="block-system-main"> <div class="panel-display panel-1col clearfix"> <div class="panel-pane pane-block pane-bean-recent-content-header"> <h2 class="pane-title">Recent content</h2> <div typeof="" about="/block/recent-content-header" class="entity entity-bean bean-editable clearfix">[...]</div> </div> <div class="panel-pane pane-custom pane-1"> <p>Login or create an account to view this content...</p> </div> </div> </section>

Let me know what you think!

LevelTen Interactive: Why Organizations Struggle With Web Analytics

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 1:42pm

Web analytics software is being used in most organizations for basic analysis and reporting, but provides little (if any) actionable insight into marketing efforts. Many people login to analytics searching for “the magic answers to their business problems”, but they don’t have specific goals, or challenges they want to analyze/address. Then they become overwhelmed with the amount of information they receive. They throw their hands in the air and concede defeat.... Read more

Phase2: DrupalCon Amsterdam Roundup

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 11:44am

As I write this, I’m on a plane back to the US after a whirlwind 10 days in Amsterdam for DrupalCon Amsterdam 2014. As always it is so gratifying to meet and work with the international Drupal community. I love getting to take a look at what everyone is working on and collaborate with people that you might otherwise only know as IRC nicks. Here are my highlights of DrupalCon Amsterdam:

Sprints and Drupal.org Logging

I volunteer my time to help the drupal.org infrastructure team with their logging infrastructure. I was very happy to be able to sprint for 3 days, mainly on drupal.org infrastructure. On Sunday, Friday, and Saturday, I worked with the Drupal.org Puppet configuration to get a new CentOS 6-based log aggregation host ready to go running the latest versions of the ELK (ElasticSearch, Logstash, and Kibana) stack. The new Logstash configuration that we’ll be rolling out is much simpler. Stay tuned to the blog for information on some of the improvements we made in the process. We hope to deploy the new logging host within the week.

DevOps Meetup

Tuesday evening, I attended the DevOps Amsterdam meetup.  The meetup was sponsored by ElasticSearch, who bought a delicious dinner for all attendees as well as some drinks. During dinner, I sat with some folks from Germany and had a chance to speak with a number of ops-attuned folks about Docker and the possible use cases for it.

The meetup had some great content. There was a talk on how GitLab uses omnibus to package GitLab with far less hassle, a talk from fellow d.o infra team volunteer Ricardo Amaro on building the next-gen Drupal testbot on Docker, and a great talk from the DrupalCon Amsterdam DevOps chair Bastian Widmer on developing culture and sharing knowledge in an agency.

LSD Leadership Meeting

Earlier this year, Phase2 contributed some of its innovation hours to the LSD project and worked with Acquia to present a webinar on Behat and release a pre-built virtual machine designed to make it easy to start doing automated testing using Behat. During the LSD leadership meeting I joined Melissa Anderson of Tag1 Consulting and Hugh Fidgens of Pfizer in a breakout session discussing Behat. Quite a few organizations present were very interested in how they could use Behat to enable a behavior-driven development workflow with their developers, or to develop a good set of automated tests that could be run either as smoke tests or as end-to-end integration tests.

Behat Everywhere

In addition to the LSD leadership meeting, automated testing and BDD were topics on everyone’s minds throughout DrupalCon.

I attended 2 BoF about automated testing or Behat, the Testing Drupal 8 BoF, and Hugh Fidgen’s Organizational Behat BoF. These talked about how we could better leverage automated testing tools in Drupal core and in client work we build today, respectively. Many people have had some success in getting automated tests or a BDD workflow started, but there was a lot of talk about writing good sustainable tests and how to integrate these tools into your workflow.

Speaking of writing sustainable tests, my favorite session of the conference was definitely the session by Konstantin Kudryashov (the creator of Behat and Mink) on how to do BDD with Behat. The session was remarkable and left an impact on many folks who went there. It really emphasized the point that BDD must be about identifying and delivering business value in our projects, and that doing that is the way to write good tests. It is definitely worth an hour of your time to watch.

As testing best practices are refined in the Drupal community as well as in Phase2, I’m very excited that the talented Jonathan Hedstrom has joined the Phase2 team.  Jonathan is a maintainer of the Behat DrupalExtension, and is sure to help us further refine our testing practices as Phase2. Jonathan has been doing work recently on upgrading the DrupalExtension to support Behat 3 and has plans to generalize the drivers that the Behat DrupalExtensions provides so that it could be used with Mink for writing tests in straight PHP without needing to use Behat.

My “Open Source Logging and Monitoring Tools” Session

On Wednesday I presented my session “Using Open Source Logging and Monitoring Tools.” I covered a lot of information in my session including using Logstash, ElasticSearch, and Kibana.  Thanks to the tireless work of the DrupalCon A/C crew, the video recording of my session is online, and the slides are available on SlideShare if you would like to follow along.  The session had an excellent turnout, and there were some great questions and discussions following my session. I was quite pleased at the large turnout, and so was @KrisBuytaert, who been bringing information about DevOps-related topics to DrupalCons for years.

I need to rephrase my state of #devops and #drupal conclusion, 2 years ago in Munich there were 10 people in this talk ..(1/2)

— Kris Buytaert (@KrisBuytaert) October 1, 2014

Back then by @samkottler , this year @stevenmerrill ‘s talk is packed , we are winning this ! #logstash, #drupalcon #elasticsearch

— Kris Buytaert (@KrisBuytaert) October 1, 2014

We were also fortunate to have Leslie Hawthorne of ElasticSearch in the audience. She gave out ElasticSearch ELKs to sprinters at the Friday event.

Packed house for @stevenmerrill in #DrupalCon #DevOps track. About to learn how the d.o infra team uses #elkstack pic.twitter.com/MThDhkA48E

— Leslie Hawthorn (@lhawthorn) October 1, 2014

Takeaways

Based on the sheer number of people interested and sessions to devoted to both topics, it is clear that there is a growing interest in both logging and metrics and automated testing or BDD in the Drupal Community. This is also the 11th DrupalCon I’ve been to, and this year’s keynotes were the best I could remember. I really enjoyed Dries’s ideation around sustainable methods for getting contributions to Drupal core and contrib, and getting to see Cory Doctorow speak live about the perils of DRM and restrictions software freedoms was also excellent.

This is an exciting time for Drupal. Drupal 8 beta 1 is live. The community is active and engaged around making Drupal better, both by contributing to Drupal 8 and by doing a better job testing projects built on it. The DA and an army of volunteers have made huge strides on improving the infrastructure around core testing as well as around all the online communities under drupal.org.

Mediacurrent: Drupal Agency, Mediacurrent, Awarded Best Overall SMB by Salesforce

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 11:33am

Today, Mediacurrent is extremely proud to announce that we have been named the 2014 Best Overall Small Business by Salesforce. The award celebrates the best overall marketing and sales story at the SMB level (1-100 employees). Over 100,000 companies use Salesforce, and hundreds of nominations were submitted for the Salesforce Surfboard awards, so saying “we’re honored” to, not only be nominated, but win this award would be an understatement.

Mark Shropshire: DrupalCamp Atlanta 2014

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 10:54am

As expected, I had a great time at DrupalCamp Atlanta 2014 last weekend. While I enjoy attending sessions, it is the chance to catch up with old friends and make new ones that I love.

I want to thank all of those who made this camp a great one (sponsors, ADUG, presenters, volunteers, and attendees)!

Some of my session notes can be found below (unedited):

Sessions Blog Category: 

Acquia: Drupal 8 - An intro field guide for front-end developers

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 9:22am

Drupal 8 is almost here, and it’s bringing big front-end improvements, including new methods to display data on mobile devices using breakpoints, build flexible templates in Twig and better management for tools and libraries.

Most importantly, changes to the display layer mean that Drupal has become much more agile and extendable for Front-end Developers.

The journey so far

Up till now, Front-end Developers have been working with a display layer that was originally introduced in Drupal 4.5, here’s how it worked...

Acquia: 1st DrupalCon, 1st Contribution! Meet Oliver and Victoria

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 8:18am

DrupalCon Amsterdam was something of a family outing for me. My wife Francesca attended all week and my kids were able to come out Thursday evening to attend Trivia Night and the Friday sprints. My daughter Victoria had sewn a dress and a cape to appear as Drupal Girl on Thursday evening. Her weeks of work on that really paid off; she was a big hit. She also got to meet her Drupal idol, MortenDK, who was the inspiration for her brand new Drupal.org and Twitter username: Drupal_Princess. There's a great photo of her meeting Webchick floating around online, too.

Appnovation Technologies: OS Initiative Community Site Launched

Drupal News - October 8, 2014 - 7:28am
The community site for our OS Initiative is now live!
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