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How to load panel pages from code

They will load faster, it's easier for deployment, and you'll be able have them under version control.

We all know that you can load views from code, and it is even recommended. But what about Panels pages? It is also possible. And actually, it's quite easy.

Let's say that you have reached a beta stage for these pages, and you are ready to start having these under version control so you can sleep better at night.

1. Create the module that will load these pages

panels_default_pages_file_structure.png

8 responses to this article.

How to create a panels style plugin

Creating panels styles can be very powerful. You can define certain styles for your client to choose from, so they can choose what type of display the panel pane will be like. This way you keep the workflow clean, your code under revision control, your themer gets to keep his sanity, and your concious stays clear.

This article assumes you know about running panels, and more or less what the nomenclature is. You should know also that panels now uses ctools, which is is primarily a set of APIs and tools to improve the developer experience.

So, what we'll be doing here is actually creating a ctools plugin, to implement a new panels style. Sorry if I'm confusing you already, don't worry, it's actually quite straight forward, we want to be able to do this:

14 responses to this article.

How to create a CCK formatter

CCK formatters are pieces of code that allow you to render a CCK field content how you want. In Drupal 6 this basicaly means a theme function.

As an example, we will build a formatter for the field type 'nodereference'.
This type of field, which is part of the standard CCK package, allows you to "reference" a node inside another.
The formatter that nodereference has by default, prints a standard link to the referenced node.

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Handy new modules

Every day a ton of new drupal modules come out. I've found four very handy new drupal modules that have been released lately, mainly nice useability enhancements for the drupal experience.

Contact form blocks

The module makes your core drupal contact forms, available as blocks. Not much you may say, but wait, there is more: contact form categories will be represented by one block per category - now that's handy. You could present different contact forms in your templates per different content types, or whatever you can think of. Nice.
Check it out from the project page, play with it. Go on, you know you want to!

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