Drupal Basics

Welcome to Drupal, an open source web content management system maintained and developed by a community of more than 1 million people across the globe.

The University of Minnesota is in good company, as our fellow users come from higher education, government, nonprofits, corporations, media, and more, from Harvard to the BBC to WhiteHouse.gov. This software enables users like you to easily organize and publish content, with a wide variety of customization options. 

As part of the Academic Health Center (AHC) web support system, the web property you manage is in the AHC’s web theme, Nokomis, that works on mobile devices and follows University and AHC standards. We are using the University’s enterprise Drupal implementation, supported by the Office of Information Technology (OIT). Once you publish, your changes will go live within minutes.

Drupal in 2 Minutes

Where's my printed Drupal manual?

We are not producing a printed manual as it would be difficult to keep current, whereas the website is cost-free and easy to update. At the Drupal training course we distribute the Drupal basics handout, which you can download and use as a printed reference.

This website has printer-friendly style sheets, so feel free to print any pages you want to reference. However, note that the website will always have the most current information. 

Things to remember

Here are a few helpful reminders as you get started with Drupal. You can also reference key steps in the Drupal basics handout

Did you save? 

Autosave is not enabled on the Drupal CMS, so be sure to save as you’re editing and adding content.

Did you publish? 

If you don’t see the new content page you just created or edited, there’s a good chance you haven’t published it yet. 

Previewing pages

When you hit Preview, it’s a Drupal preview, not real life. To see what the page looks like to web visitors, hit Save.

Choose the right heading

When choosing your text style, start with Heading 2 for titles, Heading 3 for sub-titles, and work your way down the line. This is important to support accessibility and will enable future style changes to automatically apply.