Choosing a CMS, Installing and Configuring, Themes, Modules and Hosting

A Content Management System (CMS) makes it possible for you and others to add and edit content on your web site any time from a variety of devices.

We will look at a few different options you have to start using a CMS, including using a hosted service or installing it yourself, and we will highlight the basic differences of the top Free Software CMS contenders. This session is an overview of content management system concepts and in particular WordPress and Drupal.

Beyond how to do day-to-day administration, this session will include a walk-through of both the WordPress and Drupal 7 installation processes, basic configuration, and selection and configuration of some community-contributed plugins (for WordPress) and modules (for Drupal). We will spend relatively more time on Drupal because it is the more complex and powerful option, best suited for a web site requiring significant user or community interaction and the potential to grow with new functionality.

What we will do:
Introduction to CMS concepts, basic configurations, modules and themes

Discussion - Installing Drupal, WordPress or a hosted solution like or

How to do a basic installation of a CMS, WordPress and Drupal

  • Download Wordpress
  • Create Database
  • Installation
  • Choosing a Theme -- Install - Enable - Configure
  • Choose Plugins – Install – Enable - Basic Configuration
Slides in this session will be based on a Drupal 7x Installation.

  • Download Drupal
  • Server Configuration
  • Create Database
  • Installation – settings.php
  • Choosing a Theme -- Install - Enable - Configure
  • Choose Modules – Install – Enable - Basic Configuration
  • Admin Configuration – Permissions – Roles
  • Navigating the Admin Screens
  • Adding Content (Nodes,Taxonomy etc.)
  • How Drupal and MySQL Work Together
  • Hosting Requirements - 3 things are necessary to run a Drupal installation


  1. I am not a Database Administrator.
  2. I am not a System Administrator
  3. This is not an in-depth study of Drupal or Wordpress Administration
  4. This is not an in-depth study of Drupal 7 Configurations

Join the Drupal or Wordpress community – Give Help, Get Help. Happy Hacking - Do not hack core.

Experience level: 
Session Track: 

Session Tracks (NERDSummit 2014)

Sessions Topics: 
Speaker Bio(s): 
Micky is a member of Agaric, a growing cooperative of Drupal Developers. Bringing new members to the community is her favorite thing to do. She also loves building sites that can be useful to Drupal developers and beginners.

She usually spends time ---

  • Consulting on various Drupal Projects
  • Learning about new Drupal modules and updates
  • Attending Drupal Events
  • Presenting at Drupal events
  • Teaching beginners how to get started with Drupal
  • Creating Webinars and tutorials on Drupal installation, VoipDrupal
  • Training people to update and maintain their Drupal Websites
  • Acting as a Drupal evangelist.

Micky's User Profile:

Benjamin Melancon:

Benjamin lives and works to connect people, ideas, and resources so more awesome things happen.

A programmer and web applications developer focusing on Drupal, his work with Agaric clients has included Harvard University, GenArts, and Studio Daniel Libeskind.

Benjamin tries to aid struggles for justice and liberty, and has a corresponding passion for authentic news. He is an organizer of the only People Who Give a Damn recognized as an incorporated entity by the IRS and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts charities division. He has also supported several artistic and philanthropic ventures and was a founding, elected director to the Amazing Things Arts Center in Framingham, Massachusetts.

He led 34 authors in writing the 1,100 page Definitive Guide to Drupal 7, but he is probably still best known in the Drupal community for posting things he finds to where developers running into the same challenges at least find that they are not alone.

Ben's User Profile:


I'm a Drupal developer, but I'd like to hear more about how Wordpress fits into my decision making when starting a new project. Sometimes a full Drupal install feels like overkill.

So true, a full basic Drupal install can really be too much for some small projects. The most challeging part being the customization of the adminitrative interface for a client that has no CMS experience and no technical staff to help them.