I have been working on Drupal since last 16 months and have learned right from basics to final development experience in Drupal, i am going to share my experience with drupal versions i have used and why i prefer using drupal 6. I can give you 10 reasons of why I prefer Drupal 6 over earlier versions.
Drupal is powerful robust CMS with excellent reach in community, Drupal 6 was released on 13th February after releasing four RC versions. Currently latest versions of Drupal is Drupal 6.5.
One of the key highlights of Drupal 6 that i found was that it has improved usability security and maintainability and also that it had friendly installer and it has expanded development framework and makes its api more powerful.
1) User friendly installer :
– It has a wizard for its Installation process which was not found in earlier versions. Its verifies all pre requirements in installation wizard. Database selection options also provides you can choose from mysqli/pgsql.
– Drupal 6 provides multilingual supports. Now you can install drupal in different language other then English.
– You also have the option creates administrator accounts before creation of your site and also provides you with the facility to adjust your timezones
2) Update Status Module :
You are always in touch with drupal.org with updates of new versions security fixes about modules and themes.
Drupal 6 informs you about every updates and you can download and update your module/theme directly by using update status module.
3) Drag-and-drop administration :
You can create and manage your sites blocks, menus by dragging and dropping items
The drag-and-drop interface is available for menu items, forums, taxonomy terms, uploaded files,
input formats, profile fields, and more.
4) Actions and triggers :
You can set custom work flow, Automate your processes with just a few clicks using the new and
powerful “actions” feature. No programming knowledge required! Actions are available for
posts, users, comments and more.
5) Multilingual features :
Drupal 6 has improved multilingual interface that automatically imports translation when adding a new language, installing modules or enabling themes.
By using localization client module you can translate the Drupal interface “on the fly”.
6) OpenID with Core :
OpenID is a free and unique id which can be used across the internet, making it really easy for visitors to become members of your site. OpenID provides the option to become members of different sites using the same ID.
7) PHP (PHP filter) module comes as optional :
Earlier versions of Drupal contains three input formats in filter module as Default. These are “Filterd Html”, “Full HTML” and “PHP” for write text/script into body of node or block. For security reasons “PHP” filter is harmful if you forget to set access rights in Access control, while in drupal 6 PHP module comes as a optional and you can enable/disable it as per your needs.
8) Easy customisation of theme :
You can easily create template file for each section in your website. E.g. For forum you can create
template files like “forum-submitted.tpl.php” , “forum-list.tpl.php” etc.
Drupal 6 themes contains .info file which contains basic information about your theme so that you can easily add/remove regions in this file.
9) Views and CCK :
Views and CCK are like two hands of a drupal site. By using CCK and Views you can manage your content very easily. Earlier versions contained these two modules but Drupal 6 has advanced Views and CCK modules. By using Views you can represent your content in a different manner. There is also a facility to filter your content by fields.
Views 2.0 is released before few days ago and it looks fabulous. Views 2.0 contains Drag and Drop features and Ajax friendly criteria selections and filters selections so you can also view the query of particular views and also display the time takes to execute a query.
In Drupal 6 – CCK – you can easily drag and drop field so now you have no need to set its weight. Another main feature in CCK of drupal 6 is that it provides field wise permission settings.
10) Active Community support :
Drupal community is a very powerful and active community there are more then 300,000 users in drupal.org. Since the focus has now been shifted to Drupal 6, more and more drupal developers are working on D6 and the probability to get a support is even higher.
There are other features that we can consider such as the new menu system, Schema API, Batch API, Password strength checking, Updated jQuery, Custom date formats.
I hope that all developers and clients should prefer Drupal 6 for their project development and if you have current site running in earlier versions of drupal then you should upgrade it to Drupal 6.