Chapter 35. Handling Change Management


  • Taking a site offline

  • Backing up your site

  • Restoring from a backup

  • Using the Update manager module

  • Managing site upgrades

Change management is one of the constant realities of owning and managing a Web site. Patches and upgrades are released during the life of your site, and you need to address those because they are not only critical to your site security but also may add useful improvements in performance or functionality. Management of upgrades and patches can be time-consuming, particularly for complex sites with numerous contributed modules. Accordingly, use of Drupal's notification tools and adoption of a formalized process for handling these recurrent issues is your best bet for decreasing your site management overhead.

In this chapter, I cover the basics of backing up and restoring your site and how to manage upgrade processes.

Taking a Site Offline

Prior to undertaking any significant upgrade to a live site, you should take the site offline—that is, hide it from public view. Drupal makes it possible to take a site offline with one click, while still retaining access to the admin system. In Drupal terminology, this is called putting your site into maintenance mode. After the site is offline, you can safely perform whatever work needs to be done, and you can check your work prior to restoring the site to public view.

When a site is in maintenance mode, access to the site is blocked to all users who have not been granted the appropriate ...

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