CDM DataPortal Installation

This document provides an overview on the steps necessary to install and to configure the CDM DataPortal.


Read the CDM DataPortal Requirements document and make sure that your environment meets the hardware and software requirements for the CDM DataPortal. Install any additional software needed before downloading the CDM DataPortal installation archive.

The php.ini needs to be modified for the CDM DataPortal. It is nessecary to increase the following parameters (memory_limit) in your php.ini:

; Resource Limits ;
memory_limit = 128M      ; Maximum amount of memory a script may consume (128MB)

Additional Requirements

This accounts for newer Debian based Linux systems only. In addition to the php modules which have to be installed for Drupal you will most likely need to install also the json module:

apt-get install php5-json

1. Download and extract the CDM DataPortal installation archive

  • Download the latest stable release of the CDM DataPortal installation archive ( file from the download section. This archive bundles the CDM DataPortal module with a Drupal7 for instant use.
  • Extract the archive to an approproate folder.
  • Copy all the files into the web root folder of your server. The location of the web root folder depends on the operation system and on the web server being used:
    • Linux: /var/www/ 
    • Windows + Apache: C:\Programs\Apache\htdocs
  • Finally create a symbolic link in the Drupal root folder which points to the poylfills located in the zen_dataportal theme:
    cd ${DUPAL_HOME}
    ln -s sites/all/themes/zen_dataportal/polyfills
    Add an Alias directive to the apache virtual host configuration (or to the server config if you don't have any vhosts) in order make the polyfills folder accessible otherwise Drupal willy try to handle the according URLS adn will respond with The requested page "/polyfills/" could not be found. :
    # Alias to the polyfills folder which must be at the server root
    Alias /polyfills "/var/www/drupal-7/polyfills/"

In the following we assume that your new CDM DataPortal installation is available from the this URL: (

2. Configure and install the CDM DataPortal

  • Open the file {path_to_drupal_installation}/sites/default/settings.php using the an text editor of your choice.
  • Edit the data base settings:
    $databases = array();
    $databases['default']['default'] = array(
       'driver' => 'mysql',
       'database' => 'databasename',
       'username' => 'username',
       'password' => 'pw',
       'host' => 'localhost',
  • Open your favorite browser and navigate to the installer page of your new Drupal site  ( This page will offer you two install profiles of which one is named CDM Dataportal
    If this profile is not available you first need to make it available by creating symlinks from the cdm_dataportal module to the profiles folder. If you can't create symlinks you also can copy these folders but be aware that you will have manage updated or these folders manually.
    ln -sf sites/all/modules/cdm_dataportal/profile profiles/
  • Select and run the CDM DataPortal installation profile and follow the instructions.

3. Modules & Themes activation for CDM Server

Now  all necessary modules are activated as well as important settings have been configured.

  • Sign-in to your new DataPortal. The default admin user name is admin and password is also admin. Please change the password as soon as possible.
  • Navigate to the block settings (Administer > Site building > Blocks) and activate the blocks you like to appear in your DataPortal site:
    • CDM Search Taxa: Offers a search box to search for taxa. At the bottom of the block a links to an advanced search is offered.
    • CDM Taxon Tree: Renders a tree browser which allows to navigate the currently chosen taxonomic classification. This block also supports multiple concurrent classifications by providing a user interface element which allows switching the currently chosen taxonomic classification. The highest rank to be displayed can be configured in the General tab of CDM DataPortal settings (Administer > Site configuration > CDM DataPortal)
    • External Taxon Links: The “External Links”- block is displayed for each taxon individually. The different links offered by this block element trigger search operations using the taxon name on the various connected central services. The result is displayed in a separate browser window.
  • You also may whant  to choose a theme for your site. Go to Administer > Site building > Themes and select a themes that meets your taste.

4. Advanced configuration

Clean URLs

In addition to the usual tasks required for enabling clean URLs in Drupal ( ) you have to modify the .htaccess file and your Apache 2 virtual host configuration a bit. These steps are needed since the CDM DataPortal will do AJAX request in the background. Without the modifications described in the following these request URLs will be broken by the Apache URL rewriting:

  • Add the following RewriteMap directive to the virtual host configuration (or to the server config if you don't have any vhosts)
    RewriteMap escape int:escape
  • Change the default Drupal RewriteRule by replacing $1 by ${escape:$1}. The final rule should now look like:
    RewriteRule ^(.*)$ index.php?q=${escape:$1} [L,QSA]
  • Now reload or restart Apache.


If you are interested in more advanced setups like running multiple CDM DataPortal instances in one Drupal installation, you may want to visit the drupal official site or our developer installation guide or just contact us.