Avoid the Frankensite: Site Building Best Practices 101

Kristen Pol

Drupal is flexible. Flexibility is great, except when it's not. Drupal can give you enough rope to hang yourself, or maybe you'll just end up with a Frankensite… a monsterous mess of configuration and modules that no one beyond you can make sense of (and maybe not you either!).

Any new Drupaler is going to make mistakes. Even experienced Drupalers will. Fortunately, we have a wonderful Drupal community and awesome events that bring us together to share our collective wisdom. We laugh and sometimes we cry and little by little we try to make things better and to teach each other how to make better and more maintainable websites.

In this session, we will go over some basic but important Drupal best practices.

"A best practice is a method or technique that has consistently shown results superior to those achieved with other means, and that is used as a benchmark."

If we are working in teams or other people will eventually need to work on the site, best practices will make everyone's lives easier. Even your future self will likely appreciate it!

We will focus primarily on site building best practices. Some of things we can discuss are:

  • Modules and Features
    • How to find good modules?
    • Where to put them?
    • How to test them?
    • How much is too much?
    • How to get rid of them?
    • How to patch them?
    • How to use Features and not go insane?
  • Content Strategy
    • How to make your editors happy?
    • What modules and entities to use?
    • Should you reuse fields?
    • What to name things?
    • Architecture strategies
    • Layout options
  • Website Management
    • Why use source control even if you don't code?
    • How to work with others?
    • Local development options for non-coders
    • Sane deployments
    • Backup strategies
    • Keeping sites secure
    • Minimal performance configuration
    • Why drush is useful for site builders

Let's say 'no' to Frankensites and say 'yes' to Best Practices!


Session Track

Site Building

Experience Level


Drupal Version