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The articles on this page are ComputerMinds' contribution to the Planet Drupal aggregated article feed.  Planet Drupal is intended to collate interesting and useful Drupal content from around the web.

ComputerMinds do GatsbyJS!

2nd Jul 2019

Here at ComputerMinds, we think of ourselves as Drupal specialists for the UK, but we don't limit ourselves to that. We offer clients a close working relationship and our general flexibility to get stuck into applying our skills to most problems. One of our clients, Alfresco, has come to trust us with more than just our Drupal wisdom. They wanted a new hub that would bring together documentation for a variety of their open source products, which are already on Github. Their documentation was written as Markdown files, so the hub would need to import and transform those files into HTML...

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10 Interesting Drupal Modules

18th Jun 2019

Drupal is lucky to benefit from a very active community of developers meaning that there is a wide and varied range of contributed modules to extend the functionality of Drupal core. In this article we’ll take a quick look at 10 interesting contributed modules; some are well known whilst others are a little bit more obscure.

1. Admin menu (D7) / Admin toolbar (D8)

Out of the box the Drupal admin interface can be a bit unwieldy and whilst this has been significantly improved over the years, especially with the advent of Drupal 8, there’s still room for improvement. Enter...

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Boost your speed with lazy images

11th Jun 2019

Websites need to look pretty and be blazing fast. That often means lots of beautiful high-quality images, but they can be pretty enormous to download, making the page slow to load. Images are often one of the 'heaviest' parts of a website, dragging a visitor's experience down instead of brightening it up as intended. If a website feels even a tiny bit unresponsive, that tarnishes your message or brand. Most of us have sat waiting frustratedly for a website to work (especially on mobile), and given up to go elsewhere. Drupal can be configured to deliver appropriately-resized versions, but what's...

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Upgrading your site to Drupal 8 or 9

Your current website/platform is built on Drupal 7 and news has hit your ears about 7’s end of life (EOL). Maybe your site is a Drupal 8 site and you want to know what the future has in store for you. Good news is, you don’t have to do anything immediately, but it is definitely a question that you want to start thinking about very soon.

This article is mainly aimed at Drupal 7 builds looking to upgrade to 8 or 9, and we will explore the pros and cons of each. However, if your current platform is based on...

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Let's say NO to unsanitised inputs

7th Mar 2019

Last night saw the popular EU Cookie Compliance module fall from grace, as the Drupal community discovered that numerous inputs in the admin form were not being sanitised.

To me, this shows some serious failings in how our community is handling security awareness. Let's do some fixing :)

1) We need to make this OBVIOUS, with clear examples

One of the most important things when trying to get people to write secure code is making them aware of the issues. We need Drupalers of all levels of experience to know and understand the risks posed by unsanitised input, where they...

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How to import config without losing changes

19th Feb 2019

Drupal empowers site builders and editors to configure their sites in settings forms. Configuration management lets developers push changes up to live sites to be imported. But developers have to be considerate to ensure imports will not wipe out those changes made directly through the live sites' settings forms. At the least, they have to export the changes before making further tweaks. But admins may make further changes in the meantime too, so developers can end up frequently pulling irrelevant changes back from live, which seems unnecessary.

Here's some examples of the kind of config that I'm thinking of:

  • The...
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A/B Testing with ABJS module

5th Feb 2019

ABJS is a contrib Drupal module, and, without any requirements or ties to paid services, is as low cost as you can get. As we’ll see, it’s pretty basic but it really lets you get down to building your own understanding of how A/B testing works. The beauty of ABJS is in its simplicity. The settings pages are fairly self-explanatory, which is really helpful. Let’s set up a basic A/B test to show how things work.

Setting up our first experience

In our test, we’re going to split the site 50:50 in order to test an alternate homepage design. Go...

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Review driven development?

22nd Jan 2019

We've heard of test-driven development, behaviour-driven development, feature-driven development and someone has probably invented buzzword-driven development by now. Here's my own new buzzword phrase: review-driven development. At ComputerMinds, we aim to put our work through peer reviews to ensure quality and to share knowledge around the team. Chris has recently written about why and how we review our work. We took some time on our last team 'CMDay' to discuss how we could make doing peer reviews better. Here's some of our thoughts. Many of them are essentially answers to this question: Why is reviewing hard? How can we make it easier?

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Drupal 7, 8 and 9 - When to Migrate

2nd Jan 2019

Anyone familiar with the Drupal core development lifecycle will know that presently the Drupal community supports two major versions at any one time: the current major release and its immediate predecessor. This means that at ComputerMinds we are currently helping our clients support and develop both Drupal 7 and Drupal 8 sites. So the obvious question that we get asked is ‘when is it time to upgrade’?

We can’t properly answer this question without bringing the next major release, Drupal 9, into the mix. So let’s look at the development timeline for these three versions. According to a blog post...

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Peer Review

2nd Jan 2019

At ComputerMinds we like to think that we’re all pretty good at what we do; however, nobody is perfect and this is why we always ensure that our code is properly peer reviewed as part of our quality assurance process.

Peer review is literally just what the name implies; we work together to review each other’s code to make sure that it all makes sense. This approach means that we’re able to spot obvious mistakes before they become a problem. It also has the huge advantage of allowing us to transfer knowledge between our team on a day-to-day basis.

Pull

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