The new distributions have leveraged a lot of newly added features in Drupal 8 and hence such solutions are highly scalable and robust. 

What is a Drupal distribution?

Drupal distribution is an installable package consisting of Drupal core, set of Drupal contributed modules, themes, libraries and installation profiles. Mostly every Drupal distribution caters to a specific business use case such as ecommerce, intranet, social media, community website etc. 
 

Tell me more about Drupal distributions

Well, Drupal Distributions have been around since Drupal 4. The very first distribution was built in Drupal 4.6 called CivicSpace. Ever since a lot more Drupal distributions have been built by the community and sponsors. Now, there are 1055+ Drupal distributions available on drupal.org. So, no matter what you are trying to build, chances are, that you should be able to find a distribution for it to begin with.
 

Drupal distributions in Drupal 8

Drupal 8 has been around since November 2015 i.e. close to 7 months now. The community has already started working on distributions in Drupal 8 and so far, 39 distributions are available in Drupal 8 including both the ported and the new ones. It is interesting to see that there are around 16 distributions that have been built in Drupal 8 itself and not ported from Drupal 7. Some of the distributions that have already gained popularity in the community are: 
 
  1. Lightning: It’s a distribution for enterprise authoring. It provides amazing authoring experiences and hence empowers the editorial teams. Lightning makes extensive use of Layout, Preview, Workflow and Media to create seamless experience for authoring.
  2. Thunder: It’s a distribution built for professional publishing. It has in built support for the latest publishing technologies such as Facebook Instant Articles, Riddle Interactive Content and has many other modules from the industry partners such as Nexxt.tv, Acquia, Valiton etc.
  3. Open Social: This distribution is an ideal choice if you are building a social community platform or an intranet solution. It is often seen as a successor to widely popular Drupal Commons which will not be ported from Drupal 7 to Drupal 8. It has all the features that a social community website is expected to have such as Timeline, Notifications, Groups, Events, Follow etc.
  4. LISSA Kickstart: It’s a technology stack for real time messaging in second screen applications. It enables the media companies to publish live and on demand video streams and push relevant notifications to clients.
In our next blog, we will explore the use of these and some other distributions in the Media and Publishing industry. With the same thought process that a distribution has, we have created various Drupal based solutions that solve multiple business problems.
 

Benefits of using Drupal distribution? 

There are many benefits for using Drupal distributions, some of them are as follows
  • Expedited development and hence reduced time to market
  • Community support for issues and bugs
  • Highly extensible for integration with other systems due to REST API in core
  • Empowers and executes software reusability
  • With Drupal 8, the solutions are mobile first and out of the box responsive
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