Master your Drupal install

Drupal, one of the most interesting and capable CMS out there with plenty of developers working on it and a rich history. This day and age getting started with the CMS by provisioning your own databases and webservers appears like a big waste of time, right?

True and it’s not needed at all. One of the easiest way to get started with Drupal and even a certain “flavour” of Drupal (=with ready-made customizations) like Burda Medias Thunder is Acquia Cloud.

  • First get an Acquia Cloud account, you can start for free
  • Then get the latest thunder distribution URL ( -> copy the .gz file URL)
  • Create a free application on acquia cloud console, go to manage, select the dev environment, install from URL, wait
  • Don’t select any of the custom features and just run through installation

And you have it.

So that would be the PAAS approach with limited control over the Drupal installation. If you want SAAS then get a subscription with Acquia Cloud and never think of any systems under the hood ever again.

If you prefer having full control of the installation and rather go IAAS then there are some interesting options to look.

The supersimple AWS AMI route

That is of course by far not enough to get you going but rather a building block to play with. Have fun building your own Lego castle if you want, with the help of Elastic Beanstalk.

A proper reference architecture at your fingertips

One of the best reference architectures comes from – for a highly scalable Drupal installation:

Drupal and Azure

Even though I pointed above to AWS, getting it to run scalable and resilient on Azure is perfectly possible too. This article even makes the case that Drupal and Azure are a match made in heaven.

No matter whether you buy into that or not, here is a great reference architecture:

Mani Bindra provided an ARM template for a scalable Drupal deployment on Azure: