One Geek\’s View On…

December 11, 2006

I have completed my first intranet project with Drupal

Filed under: drupal, Drupal Projects, WebDev — Robbie The Geek @ 2:42 pm

Hey all, been a while life, school, work and wifey all taking time away from me typing 🙂

My manager at work is a great guy that realizes that if you are passionate, and inspired by what you are doing at your job that you will be more productive. Recently after talking about the functionality of Drupal and some possible uses of it for our organization I was tasked with creating a repository for network drawings. This was to provide our network group with a central place to go for documentation and notes about specific sites and locations throughout our network. The key was that we wanted to separate out who had rights to upload network drawings and who can upload pictures of the location details, and finally that no anonymous user could view any actual document or photo, that that was something only authenticated users can do. I started this task by creating a couple of roles, lets call them pics and drawings. I was going to just make the drawings group create a new page and allow upload of the drawings through this node type. But in the long run I actually found it more worthwhile to create a whole new module that I called site that would allow the drawing users to create a location and only be required to type in the address of the site and pick the shortened version of the name based on a taxonomy term (also I could change the names of the fields so that they were more useful in this case I changed Title to Site Address and Body to Notes which was no longer required). I prepopulated the entire category with the names of every site in our environment so that no matter what I was sure what the taxonomy term would be (this became important later when I created a custom view for each site).

The next step was to start thinking about how I wanted to pages themselves to be layed out, and I came up the node type site wtih the diagram and the notes about the site I wanted to be the main content of the page and then I wanted to add all the photos from the site to the right sidebar as a block. This seemed very straight forward, I started by creating a few custom views with a page and an exact taxonomy term, and a block with exact taxonomy term and listed only on specific pages. After doing about 15 sites this way I started to think there must be a better way, and I came up with atleast one (I am sure there are others and even better solutions but this was my final solution). I created a single customized page view that utilized the argument section of the view, to take in the last portion of the url as the argument and the last portion of the URL was, you guessed it the short name taxonomy term. So now I can create a single view based on the argument passed in, and make individual blocks for the photos tagged the same way, and have them shown only on the URL for the specific site. In the long run I was able take care of all the security issues by just using the built in access control, and the roles I had previously created. So in the end one group of users can create sites and upload diagrams, one group of users can create image nodes and make comments, and my manager is happy and his boss is too. Drupal to the rescue once again. Any specific questions or thoughts please comment below or free free to send an email to

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