Completely rewritten and powered by the latest Symfony framework, Drupal 8 hit the scene late last fall. Since then, companies have turned to TechAspect for advice and guidance on how to best use the sporty new platform and its 200+ newly upgraded features. We have to admit, we’ve been impressed with the new release. So much so, that we want to provide you with this quick overview of Drupal’s top five improvements, along with some expert tips on streamlining the move to version 8.
- A More User-Friendly Back-End
In the past, it took first-time Drupal 6 and 7 users nearly a month to learn the back-end interface, which many considered one of its biggest drawbacks, and more complex than either WordPress or Joomla. The much-sleeker Drupal 8 corrects these issues through better usability and friendlier back-end functionality. These enhancements make version 8 particularly appealing to website builders who have minimal coding experience.
- Core-Resident Views Module
Drupal’s Views Module is one of its most popular and indispensable features, used today on nearly 900,000 sites. In Drupal 8, the Views Module is now part of the core. Most Drupal admin screens use the Views Module, which helps save time when customizing screens.
- New Theme Engine
Drupal 7 used the PHPTemplate engine, which allowed embedding of PHP code into HTML.
Though powerful, this engine wasn’t well-suited for users without PHP coding skills. Drupal 8 features Twig as its default templating engine. Twig’s simplified format enables Drupal users of all skill levels to create themes that are faster, more flexible, and more secure than before.
- Multi-Lingual Readiness
Drupal 7 required users to install several modules to give a site multi-lingual capabilities. By comparison, Drupal 8’s core is multi-lingual ready. A translation option built into the admin interface lets users start translating website content almost immediately.
- Core-Resident WYSIWYG Editor
The much-anticipated CKEditor is now a standard part of Drupal 8’s core. The drag-and-drop interface makes customizing the WYSIWYG toolbar quick and easy. A related feature, the "Quick Edit" Module, allows content editors to make changes in-line, without navigating to another page, tab or overlay.
What About Migration?
It’s easy to get excited about Drupal’s 200+ enhancements, and how they make working in the platform easier for users of all levels. Besides better usability, an equally important consideration is migration, and when might be the best time for you to make the move to version 8.
Many companies ask us about this issue whenever new software is released. Perhaps you have the same questions. To help prepare for a possible migration, we recommend that site owners’ first inventory and analyze the following parameters:
- Overall size of the site
- Number of contributed and custom modules used
- Sizes of the user database and content database
- Number and type of third-party integrations
Call Today and Let Us Help
Whether you’re a newbie, content moderator, webmaster, or developer--or even a high-level app designer or architecture programmer, Drupal 8 and its 200+ enhancements promise to make completing your work faster, easier and more efficient. If you need help with the inventory/analysis described above, or have questions about any aspect of Drupal 6, 7 or 8, contact TechAspect today. Or visit our Case Study Archive to learn more about our Drupal experience