Choosing a system
Step 4: The language or system used to build your site will influence the type of site you can create.
Various systems are used to build websites at ANU. The table below compares some of the popular options. Please ask your local web support if you would like to discuss these options further and find out what they recommend for your site.
Comparison on systems for building ANU websites
|Availability & contact
Anyone can use the centrally administered PHP templates.
When you request a Site ID, we will send you a link to the templates.
If you already have a Site ID, you can find the templates in the Web Publishers Group Alliance site.
Contact the Webstyle team if you have any questions.
Sites in CMBE/CPMS are encouraged to have their site built by the CMBE/CPMS team in Drupal.
Other areas can access templates (Acton theme and modules) via the Drupal Users Group website but need their own local web support.
Anyone can have a WordPress site on a central installation.
Contact IT Services Unix team via the IT Service Desk
The Webstyle team can also provide basic help with Wordpress enquiries.
Contact IT Services Enterprise Systems via the IT Service Desk for availability and further information
||PHP templates page
||Drupal Users Group
||ITS CMS Alliance site
||Drupal training will be needed
||Basic training will be helpful
||Basic training will be needed
||Text editor or Dreamweaver
||Any web browser
||Any web browser
||Any web browser
||Flexibility in layout and functionality
||Dynamically generated views of the content with a database backend. Coding not required for complex layouts
||Easy to learn and quick to build a site
||Moderately easy to learn
||No database backend. Complex behaviour needs to be coded by someone with expertise
||Steep learning curve and potential lack of support outside CMBE/CPMS
||Only basic layouts and functionality, some coding is required
||HTML coding required for layouts that are not basic. Editing interface requires training, can be slow, and can only be used in some web browsers.
|Good for ...
||Small, simple sites for non-experienced coders, larger sites for experienced coders only
||Large, data-driven sites which require dynamic views of the content. Good for people who don't code, provided they are trained in Drupal
||Blogs, news sites, small, simple sites. Good for people who don't code
||Small, simple sites which do not require dynamic webpage elements
Creating new templates
We strongly recommend you use a system that already has ANU-styled templates. However, if you need a template that is not yet available, or if you want to adapt a template to work with a particular system or language, please let us know so we can work with you to create a template that everyone can use.
Do not use source code on existing sites to generate your own templates. Base them on the PHP template and use scripted inclusions.
ANU templates use scripting languages to automatically retrieve objects from the central store and include them within your page. This ensures that everyone is using the latest versions of content and code.
Scripted sections should not require any changes because they are automatically updated for you. In the PHP template, you can see the scripted sections within your config file underneath
//Scripts and includes - no need to update//
The scripts automatically populate things like:
- Metadata – the standard ANU block of metadata is included, along with metadata specific to each page
- Style sheets – the style sheets that are relevant to your area are automatically based on the site ID number in your config file
- Explore bar and site banner – the global explore bar, and the relevant banner for your website, are automatically included based on the site ID number in your config file
- ANU footer – the global ANU footer is automatically included and the page footer (update section) is created based on the values you enter at the top of the config file
Includes should be retained to make sure that your website is using the latest versions of any central objects.
If you cannot use scripts for any reason, please work with us to develop an alternative.