Drupal 6 – not quite ready yet

I’ve been playing with Drupal recently – although I’m primarily a ColdFusion programmer, I find it very interesting to look at other Content Management Systems in other languages.

Overall, Drupal is excellent. There are some really well thought out parts. Drupal relies on a set of “core” modules, which in themselves offer a ton of functionality – almost enough for most sites. Almost.

The catch I’ve discovered with Drupal is that some of the most useful modules which exist for version 5.7 have yet (at least at time of writing ) to be ported to the latest version, 6 (or even 6.2 which we’re on now).

If you were planning on building a bi-lingual website, Drupal 6 promises some amazing core functionality; however, to do something like language specific menu items requires the integration of a third party module, i18n. This module isn’t feature complete, and still in development for Drupal 6; but for 5.7 it does pretty much everything you might need, just outside of the core Drupal modules.

The speed which Drupal runs through its versions is slightly alarming as well. Within a week of installing 6, 6.1 was out, and two weeks later 6.2 Now whilst I’m not against upgrading versions, when you have a large dependency on 3rd party modules, they have to catch up before you can upgrade.

So in sum, I needed to do a bilingual site in PHP, I went for 5.7 and it’s all been plain sailing ever since.