high level explanation of how Drupal deals with a page request

There is a lot of detail at each stage, but it is important for you to understand the overall picture.

To summarise the process:

You request a page.

In turn, Drupal:

  • Separates the internal path from the full URL
  • Bootstraps and initialises the database, sessions etc
  • Maps the path to a callback function, which gets the primary content
  • Modules can hook into the process and extend functionality and alter the content
  • The Theme System generates the HTML and styles it.
  • Drupal returns a fully formed HTML page to the browser
  • The browser renders the HTML page for the user
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