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Organic Groups as a Multisite Implementation

Drupal's Organic Groups module allows users to create and manage their own groups. With these groups, you can manage access to your content by associating content with a group. This association, combined with the Context module, provides us with the foundation to create a multisite geared towards communities. A foundation that solutions such as Drupal Commons use to provide community-driven content. Groups as a SiteWith organic groups, each group is treated as a content type. As a result, you can use each node of that content type as one of your sites. For example, if you had a sports-focused site, you could create a Group node called Hockey. Using this group node, you can utilize the Context module and treat it as a section of your website. With your groups dividing your site into sections, we can use each node as a context condition allowing us to

  • change the navigation of the site
  • change the page layout
  • retrieve content solely belonging to a group.

These actions will be the result of triggers that act upon the group node condition. As a result, deploying out new sites is as simple as creating a group node and applying the necessary context conditions and triggers. Single Database Installation with Multisite FeaturesApproaching multisite implementations with organic groups allows us to keep a single database. A single database saves us from such issues as

  • moving content across sites
  • sharing users across sites
  • applying update scripts across sites

As a result, our data becomes easier to maintain as we simply need to assign content to a group. Moving content between sites is a matter of ticking a checkbox for a group to create the necessary link. This single database solution also eases update scripts that need to be run for modules as there is only a single database to act upon. Organic groups and contexts allow us to provide community-driven multisite solutions. With each group as its site, we can deploy and take down sites by simply adding a new group node. As well, maintining the site becomes easier as we only need to deal with a single database when compared to a traditional multisite implementation. Organic groups and context: providing the simplicity of a single database solution with the functionality of a multisite.

Developer
Specializing in back-end development, Raphael Lagman has been with Appnovation since March of 2012. He has over six years of web development experience with an expertise in open-source technologies. Raphael's favourite part of web development is its fast pace and consistently evolving nature....→ More about Raphael
Developer

Specializing in back-end development, Raphael Lagman has been with Appnovation since March of 2012. He has over six years of web development experience with an expertise in open-source technologies. Raphael's favourite part of web development is its fast pace and consistently evolving nature.

Outside of work, Raphael enjoys staying active at the gym and tinkering with his home computer.

Appnovation Technologies