Lots of changes are starting to take place here at CMS Report. We're now running on a new version of the Drupal content management system!
Over the weekend, I decided to pull the trigger and upgrade CMSReport.com from Drupal 6 to Drupal 7. It's hard for me to believe that it has been almost half a year since Drupal 7 was released. This was a frustrating upgrade for me as I've traditionally upgraded CMS Report shortly after any new release of Drupal is out. In fact, I have sometimes upgraded a site before the release is official. As a content management system, my five-year hate-love relationship with Drupal is still going on strong.
Despite the usual learning curve associated with a major Drupal upgrade, I ran into two additional problems I've never had to face with this site. First, the CMSReport.com of today is a much more complex site to run, maintain, and upgrade then it was in 2008. With the number of readers and sponsors this site now sees, I just don't have the luxury of blowing up the site and say "oh well" lets start again. Secondly, the selection of premium or contributed themes available for Drupal 7 just plain sucks (there, I said it). I must have spent half of my upgrade time just searching for and then tweaking a Drupal 7 theme. People often complain about the lag time between a Drupal release and the availability of third-party modules. In my opinion, it is the lack of theme development going on with Drupal that is the real problem with Drupal upgrades.
During the next couple months tweaking and improving my new Drupal site. I still have two significant features to return to the site once the contributed modules are available:
- News Feeds into Planet CMS needs to be restored. (I can't even get the Feeds contributed module to properly install on the site)
- The "Similar Stories" block needs to be returned. I'm already missing the ability to suggest similar stories relevant to the one you're reading now.
I'm also not sold on my theme's style and we're probably going for another new theme in a couple months. Although, I've already heard from some of you that have nice things to say about the new layout.
In the long run, I also want to improve the workflow for our authors that contribute articles to this site. I also need to improve how how those articles are being moderated. Until then, please don't hesitate to contact me if you run into any difficulty with submitting articles to CMS Report as well as viewing articles at the new site. Hopefully, you'll find this upgrade a benefit to your time spent here at CMSReport.com. Thanks!