Cant there be an easy way to do anything? Damn I just want to creat a menu tab and have sub menu items show up when the mouse hovers over it . Do you think I could search with the keywords children and menu and find anything even remotely helpful for something i know must be simple. Not from Drupal!! Idiots idiots idiots


tstoeckler’s picture

Instead of taking seven days of looking yourself (plus the time wasted for this post), you could have posted a friendly question after maybe an hour of looking yourself and given that you would have explained your problem someone would have most probably helped you. Almost definitely after seven days. So please don't blame Drupal for your technical incapabilites and don't blame the community for your social incapabilites. You have every right not to like Drupal, even to hate it. But you have no right for such a post.

randyjkoch1’s picture

your right there is no excuse. my only defense is that drupal mixed with my seven days spent on this project have made me go nuts. I will repent no doubt and feel very bad for my behavior but right now I feel as though I was lured into believing a lie by many good hearted folks who dont know what straightforward means. I was promised from blogs that drupal would be very straightforward and user friendly. When something is logical I can follow along. When every exercise requires a five mile rabbit trail that leads to nowhere it gets real frustrating. Way too many late nights and nothing to show for it but unfortunately its also hard to cut my losses and move on. I wish those that created the help topics would just use a simple key word search that allows you to sort through every instance that word is used. I'm sure I could have found many answers to the many questions I've had if for instance I could enter the word "menu" and found everything there is to know about menus. Like a technical manual glossary.

jamesialford’s picture

Randy, check your post for a few hours ago. I gust gave you a reply. Please give us some time to answer the question.

The Drupal community is a great place to look for the information you need. You might not get a strait forward answer but, you will get a response that will lead you to what you are looking for.

Have a good night and do not let learning something new get you to the point of pulling your hair out.


randyjkoch1’s picture

Thanks a lot. I've calmed down now and still have some hair left. I told myself I was getting over my head when I started this project and it appears I was right. However, now it looks like I have no choice but to swim. Thanks for your response. I tried this but it is still not creating a drop down menu. For example I created a menu item and chose primary link. I am not sure what to put in for the path. but anyway i saved this and then tried to drag it into the other menu item I want as the parent and it just reshuffles but doesnt create a dropdown menu.

mcfilms’s picture

Dude. Step 1 -- Take it easy. It's web development, not nuclear engineering. Step 2 - Have a look at the Nice Menu module. Many themers use this in conjunction with their theme to do what you describe.

Good luck. Drupal does require a bit of patience and some learning -- and a fair amount of asking for help. I find the book "Using Drupal", the handbook pages at and the #drupal-support board on IRC to be very helpful. I also find it helpful to take a positive tone and minimize how much I call people stupid or idiots when asking for help.


A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

randyjkoch1’s picture

I take your words to heart. It has been seven days of searching and trying for every inch of this project and it finally came to a melt down. Sometimes you forget that your rantings are actually being heard. I went into this with a promise that it would be easy and I sort of expected to just drag and drop boxes and menus and find very relevant help for what I assumed to be easy stuff (like creating a drop down menu). I an now convinced "easy" and "web-site" dont mix well. Thanks

randyjkoch1’s picture

is it just me or am I right in stating that drop down menus are pretty standard fare for web sites. dont you think there should be a really straightforward manual somewhere that describes in detail ( and with examples) how to create very common things like drop down menu? ie

Check this box
link this
drag this
bingo your finished

I mean taxonomy and all the bells and whistles are really cool but what many of us came to drupal wanting (and promised) was a template approach to creating a web site where you picked a theme and then rocked on. I would call that user friendly. I am now at the point of not wanting to waste five more days of productivity but also dont have a website which is what I was supposed to have had by this time.

mcfilms’s picture

I do find drop down menus fairly common. I have also found them fairly easy to implement in Drupal. Just add a module, turn it on and configure the module to your use. Either use the module I mentioned previously or this one:

Complaining about what you were led to believe or how much time you've wasted is not going to help you get the job done. DOING stuff and then detailing exactly what the problem is that is preventing you from achieving your goals -- that gets the job done.

A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

1361’s picture

Well, I have to agree with you on the drop down menus. The above mentioned “nice menus” and “superfish” modules work. However I feel they’re limited by the colors and the blocked menus. I am sure these could be modified, but it is a little more than I feel like dealing with. Is it that difficult to make something that simply matches the rest of the theme? I think most websites utilize a dropdown menu in one form or another. A simple on / off feature should be built in. I am really a bit disappointed in this regard. Overall, I am happy with Drupal, but I seem to be spending way too much time dealing with something that I feel should be built into every site. Just my rookie inexperienced opinion.

Kind regards

mcfilms’s picture

I understand what you are saying. But if Drupal had all the features people think belong in core, it would be bloated and slow. I rather like the plug-in (or modular) design. I do have a certain set of modules I install just about every time. But I don't think they all belong in core.

Many people like to create their own menus in CSS. So they wouldn't be happy if this extra code were installed by default.

In terms of changing the menu colors, you can do it with FireBug and a text editor. The first time will take a few hours, but then you will be able to set them in the future in 10 minutes.

A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

omigosh’s picture

Like you I tried to learn Drupal thinking it was a drag-and-drop web-building tool. I tried being polite in my posts and received polite responses. But that doesn't change the fact that Drupal is so badly documented that it's simply not worth the trouble to learn. Perhaps ranting is the only way to get through to whoever runs Drupal that it is simply inadequate. Rather than learn Drupal, buy a book on PHP with MySQL and learn how to design your own content management system. It's much easier and you can do just as much on your own.

mcfilms’s picture

"get through to whoever runs Drupal "

You do. Or we do. Drupal is free, open-source code. The idea is, that instead of buying an expensive software package that might be better documented, everyone in the Drupal community pitches in however they can. Some people write code, some develop themes, some find problems with the documentation and write a clearer tutorial.

It's a community-driven development platform. So if you don't like the documentation, you can pitch in and try and make it better. I'm not denying that using Drupal is HARD when you first start. No one should explain it as a simple to use, do everything, development platform. It takes perseverance and hours if not days of feeling lost.

But honestly, do you really think developing your own custom CMS is going to be easier? Will it have more features? Will it be expandable and upgradable?

I would say buy a book on Drupal. My first one was "Using Drupal." Also, don't expect to build a fully functional e-commerce site that looks exactly like you want. At least not on your own and on your first time at bat.

A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

traceelements’s picture

Rather than learn Drupal, buy a book on PHP with MySQL and learn how to design your own content management system. It's much easier and you can do just as much on your own.

Wow, you really believe that? So despite all of the millions of hours that people have spent building Drupal and it's modules, you can more easily build your own comparable, feature-rich CMS from a book?

omigosh’s picture

Yes, I absolutely believe that millions of people are wasting their time unless they're making very simple sites or already have a programmer on staff.

You can do nearly everything Drupal can do without anything like the frustration of dealing with Drupal if you simply design it your sites on your own. Drupal is like a horse designed by committee. It tries to be everything to everybody and therefore can't do much of anything and what little it can do it makes difficult.

If people are interested I'll send them my CMS. It isn't perfect, which is why I started working with Drupal, but in it's latest iteration it boasted a calendar, user forum, full content management, advertising, teaser options and pretty much everything else you needed for a business website. The code wasn't well written and I don't think I'm very good at writing code. That's why I invested six months, three books, videos from and a lot of time on this website trying to figure out how to make my latest not-very-complicated association website work. It still doesn't work. At this point it would be much easier for me to entirely rewrite the website in my own PHP and MySQL but I sold my client on the idea that Drupal was the Great Web Code Writing Standard and, being a government agency with money available only at certain times of the year, they bought it and paid in advance.

I'm now in the position of having to either give them their money back or guarantee them full and complete content management for at least a year. I might as well have written the whole site in straight HTML and given them a copy of Contribute!

I personally am appalled that so many people use Drupal. Seems like a classic case of cognitive dissonance. You invest so much time learning something that you're afraid to admit you're wrong so you become an evangelist for your beliefs. You see the same thing happening with cults. People know their core beliefs are rubbish but they can't admit it, so they wind up preaching on the street.

Yes, there are good sites made with Drupal, but I'm willingl to bet that most of them sites are supported by webmasters who can deal with problems as they arise. That's like buying a car and then hiring a full time mechanic to fix it when it breaks.

rpgrealms’s picture

Frankly if you can't figure out Drupal, you aren't going to be able to build anything worth much using PHP and MySQL.

omigosh’s picture

But I already have.

TimelessDomain’s picture

I use Drupal to learn the concepts & potential applications of networked information systems. I use it to aggregate information in a format that is CSV exportable. None of the other CMS's use such futuristic features (so the ideas & applications are limited with those). If you want to expand your comprehension of what networked information are (& can be) & compile your information in an easily transferable format -> then drupal is great. If you want 100% control, then build you own system. If you want to take the time to learn all the Drupal vocabulary & modules -> then you will also have 100% control (though this takes YEARS).

freedom isn't free

technicalknockout’s picture


If you feel this way about Drupal, why are you using it? And why on earth would you convince your client of using a web platform you are not comfortable developing with? Why don't you just use a different CMS?

Here's a pretty solid list of choices:

There are countless project that are unique in their ease of use, development practices, level of support and documentation, philosophies, etc. Find the one that works for you. I agree Drupal has a steep learning curve and can be quite frustrating at times, but I've stuck with it and found it gives me a huuuuge running start against trying to build anything comparable from scratch.

Also, if there's something here and there that's stopping your project and you have not been able to solve it yourself or on the forums, consider getting paid support - there are tons of drupal shops and freelance developers who might help you get over a hump.

- - - -

mcfilms’s picture

If people are interested I'll send them my CMS. It isn't perfect, which is why I started working with Drupal, but in it's latest iteration it boasted a calendar, user forum, full content management, advertising, teaser options and pretty much everything else you needed for a business website. The code wasn't well written and I don't think I'm very good at writing code.

So you mean I can exchange Drupal for a CMS developed by one guy who admits that the code isn't well written? Sign me up!

Look, I'm sure your CMS is far better than anything I could come up with. But the features you mention can be had out of the gate with Drupal plus the date module. Why reinvent the wheel?

The trend in CMS is to move away from custom hand-rolled systems to open-source systems. Ask Sony Music, The Onion, and many, many government agencies. How can one person building a CMS have the slightest hope of creating the features already in Drupal? And when a new feature is required, how quick can it be added to this custom system? I can set up and configure a shopping cart and checkout in a day. How long would it take to write from scratch?

You said this was for a paying project. I think you should seriously consider taking a chunk of your budget and finding a developer that will do this AND show you how they did it. That is how I did my first Drupal project and I learned much more than I did from books and videos. I didn't make as much money on that project as I had hoped, but it paid off big time down the road.

Good Luck to you whichever road you take.

A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

Jeff Burnz’s picture

I see these types of comments occasionally, usually there is a fundamental disconnect with "how Drupal works", so instead of investing time and effort working with Drupal they fight against it and eventually give up and blame the tool.

Drupal does not make things difficult, nor does it try to be everything to everyone (in fact the truth is the exact opposite). Nor is Drupal designed by committee, its designed by peer review - something entirely different and something that your roll-your-own script will never be subject to...

omigosh’s picture

I appreciate your comments and the civilized level of discussion even though I've been veering towards a rant. I suppose I will continue to try & use Drupal because a good Drupal website designer is in demand. But I sure wish there was a big, fat screaming warning on the site to the effect that learning Drupal is going to take a ages and unless you're planning a very simple site, you're going to have problems.

There are so many things that are unnecessarily frustrating about Drupal that I don't have time to list them here. I certainly wouldn't have agreed to use Drupal to develop my current site if I had only known how difficult it is to learn. I'm sure there are others in this position, newbie coders or graphic designers who latch onto a system which seems to promise a drag-and-drop approach without the need to learn code.

Jeff Burnz’s picture

There are so many things that are unnecessarily frustrating about Drupal...

Drupal devs have to make decisions about how things get done, Drupal has to "do" something, someway, and people just like you and me make those decisions. You might not like the way its done, but that's the way that was chosen at a certain point in time - to solve a problem. What your comment does not account for is the many issues, and permutations of issues that have been considered against alternative ways of doing things. If you really don't like something and have the skills then do something about it, write a patch, get involved in some other way (such as usability, accessibility or the 101 other ways to contribute).

True that some things are frustrating and Drupal can always be improved, all open source projects are like this, some things in Ubuntu really piss me off, but there you go, that's just the way it is. You have to look at what you get for free - not so many years ago inferior CSM's cost 20, 30, 60, 120 thousand dollars (and still do), you get a lot for free. Companies like Yahoo, Sony BMG etc etc are not stupid - they recognize a killer deal when they see one, as do the thousands of mom & pop businesses, clubs, NGO's, and everyday Janes and Joes who just want to realize their idea for a website. You might have gotten frustrated and threw the towle in after a few weeks, but many do not - I have seen complete noobs build amazing sites with little more than a bit of elbow grease and determination to succeed. No one EVER said Drupal was easy, in fact you will see it written far more often that the learning curve is steep and you either adapt or die.

You also need to take a does of self responsibility here dude - you recklessly made a promise to a paying client knowing full well you did not grok the system and likely had very little clue what you were getting into - that is your mistake and you should stop blaming Drupal for your own short comings. No one sold you on Drupal, no one forced it down your throat - you choose to pull the client based on a promise you didn't have the balls to follow through on.

With regards to ranting, dude - read your own posts. Here's a guy with 5 minutes experience bitching his ass off about things he really knows little about. I build Drupal, I think I rightly deserve the space to defend my work when its attacked.

omigosh’s picture

So I need a "does" of self-resonsibility and I don't have any balls.

Good think you're not repsrentative of the people I've met on this forum.

Jeff Burnz’s picture

alexbk66-’s picture

Yeah, quite often I feel similar. I just try to be more polite in my posts but the replies I receive are more arrogant. Guess your style works better!

Drupal professionals defend Drupal, but I guess the good joke describes it: 'Every software is user friendly when you know what button to press'.

I'm currently 50/50, when I have a problem - I hate Drupal, problem solved - love Drupal. But I must agree - it's a pain.

And I love this slide show

mcfilms’s picture

I didn't read any replies that I consider arrogant in that thread. I see people pointing out that the free, open-source platform we can all be a part of, does have flaws. Like any system it presents challenges.

A list of some of the Drupal sites I have designed and/or developed can be viewed at

alexbk66-’s picture

@mcfilms, I didn't mean this thread :)

omigosh’s picture

I can't understand why anyone would use Drupal. I would be willing to bet there are a lot of Drupal users who have done one site and will never use it again. Why would anyone continue to struggle to make it work when it is so restrictive and difficult to use? Either your web pages are simple and easy to create or I'm too stupid to understand the program. Yet I find it much easier to create content-managed websites in PHP and use add-ons available for free on the web. I can create a site that's as good as any Drupal site in half the time. I simply don't understand why people use it. I'm sincere... I'm not trying to insult anybody. It's like watching people hit themselves with a hammer. Why don't you stop?

nevets’s picture

Because with Drupal I hit the nail :)

rpgrealms’s picture

I can't understand why someone would find trolling the Drupal forums entertaining...

syednayab’s picture

If i am not wrong, Impress CMS is something which migh intrest you. Purely drag and drop and Visual.