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What is Drupal Hosting?


Drupal is an open source content management platform that can be downloaded and used free of charge. It consists of a core group of files that are standard on all installations, plus plugins and themes that are added to customise it. The name is an Anglicised version of the Dutch word for 'droplet', and that inspired the teardrop logo.

The Evolution of Drupal


The Drupal source code was originally written as an internet forum application. Its founder, Dries Buytaert, a PhD graduate in computer science. Buytaert now runs a company called Acquia that specialises in Drupal support and employs 300 people. It was Acquia that assisted with the transition of the whitehouse.gov website to the Drupal platform.

From humble beginnings, Drupal now powers at least 2 per cent of websites globally. It is owned by the Drupal Association, which is a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting Drupal.

On the modern web, Drupal is built to support content. It lets companies index and display custom content types in a limitless number of ways, so you're not limited to normal blog or ecommerce formats. This is why many businesses adopt Drupal over the alternatives.

Drupal Pros and Cons


There are a few downsides to Drupal:

◉ It's less popular than its competitors, so you'll find it a bit more difficult to pick up
◉ The learning curve is pretty steep if you want to go beyond the basics
◉ You will need PHP skills (or hired helpers) for anything complex
◉ The add-on modules can be complicated and difficult to implement
◉ Big upgrades can render all of your modules totally unusable
◉ One major hack has made many concerned.

However, website owners stay loyal to Drupal because:

◉ Most web hosts provide it as a free one-click installer
◉ Developers have tried to make it more usable, and are actively investing in getting feedback
◉ It's very flexible, particularly if you can code
◉ It's designed to be shaped to fit your own purposes
◉ It scales up well, even with very large amounts of content; Drupal 7 has been re-coded with speed in mind
◉ It has been used to develop some very high profile sites (Sony Music, eBay, Harvard and Al Jazeera)
◉ User roles and permissions are sophisticated
◉ Plugins, known as modules, extend core functionality and make Drupal more versatile

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