Build your own family history website with Drupal 7

Submitted by Michael Sandes on Mon, 11/23/2020 - 15:06

I'm a very keen amateur Drupal 7 developer and I have been Using Drupal 7 for several years to create dynamic, data driven websites that you can easily create and maintain yourself at minimal cost.

What sort of websites can be created with Drupal 7?

You can create virtually anything with Drupal 7 - it is the true Swiss Army Knife of Content Management Systems and while a Family history site is quite complicated, it is not beyond the realms of possibility for Drupal 7.

Drupal is designed to be very modular, Drupal core consists of a series of modules that come packaged with the Drupal download but it can also be extended considerably with the use of additional contributed modules. In these examples we will make extensive use of the power of Drupal to create content types and entity types with the Entity Construction Kit module, to build custom database queries with the Views module and to use those results in displays built with the Panels module.

Why Drupal 7 and not Drupal 8?

Drupal 7 has been around a lot longer and there is greater support for Drupal 7. In addition Drupal recommend the use of Composer and Git with Drupal 8, a big help for professional web developers working in collaboration on many sites simultaneously but difficult to install and use in Windows. Drupal 7 is a lot simpler and can be easily managed with a code editor and file explorer in Windows or cPanel in an online environment.

What does this cost?

The short answer is "very little". Drupal and all its modules are free open-source, as is Apache, PHP and MySQL. In addition utilities we use to develope sites are all free to use. If you want to develop sites on your own computer then there is no further cost. If on the other hand you want to put your website in the public domain then you will need to purchase a domain name (e.g. which will cost about £10.00 per annum and pay for hosting your files on a shared server which will cost about £5.00 per month. Local server and shared hosting server setup will be covered in detail.

The Drupal 7 icon (or Druplicon)

The Drupal 7 icon (or Druplicon)