Great Drupal Modules: TinyMCE and WYSIWYG

By Lynn Beighley, Seamus Bellamy

Proving that size really doesn’t matter, TinyMCE is a small but powerful module that allows you and your Drupal users to easily create formatted content, much like a word processor produces. It places a framework of formatting commands on top of any large text-entry fields.

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In order to add TinyMCE to your Drupal installation, you are first required to download and install a module called WYSIWYG HTML Editor. (What’s a WYSIWYG? That’s geek-speak for what you see is what you get.

Unlike a true word processor, TinyMCE formats text with HTML code behind the scenes. In the case of fonts, this means you have a limited set available through this panel. The font you use on a web page will show up only for your users who also have that same font on their computers.

Not only does TinyMCE modify your text, but it also allows you an easy way to include images and Flash movies in your posts. You can also control the color of your text and the background color behind your post.

TinyMCE can offer as many or as few options to your site’s users as you want. To change the number of WYSIWYG editing options available to your users when they create content on your site, click Configure on your Dashboard menu bar and then select WYSIWYG Profiles, found under the Configuration page’s Content Authoring pane.

You will be presented with a wide variety of options for TinyMCE, as well as an explanation for each. The WYSIWYG profiles configuration page can also help you to install other HTML editors, should TinyMCE not be a perfect fit for your site.

TinyMCE can be set up to allow the upload of media files such as images and video. Although software creators do their best to ensure the security of their applications, malicious people constantly work hard to exploit weaknesses.

In general, when using a module that allows users to upload files or customize content, be cautious. You should only allow people in highly trusted roles access to this module — or any other modules involved in content creation.