To install Drupal and Skilling, you're going to use a program on your server called Composer. It does most of the work for you. It knows how to download Drupal and other software, and put the programs in the right folders on your server. It also knows how to update programs. When there's a Drupal security update, Composer can download and apply it for you.

Composer is your friend.

You run Composer by typing "composer" into your server's terminal. This page shows you how start your terminal, and how to use it.

Terminal icon

Starting the terminal

Your hosting company gives you a control panel, like cPanel. Most control panels let you access the terminal.

Here's how I start the terminal:

Starting the terminal

Then I see a place where I can type commands:


The stuff before the white square is the prompt, telling you that the terminal is ready. Part of it is:


That's the current folder. More in a moment.

Another name for "folder" is "directory." They mean the same thing.


Let's try a command. The commands here are for a Linux server, which yours probably is.



... and press Enter. You should see the current date and time, on the server's clock. The server may be in a different time zone from you. That's OK. Drupal handles time zone conversions quite nicely.

Now type...


... and press Enter. "ls" is short for "list files." Here's what I see:

ls command

I've been working with this server for years, so there's lots there. You'll probably see less stuff.

Remember that files are in folders. Which folder is the terminal showing you? It's the one that's in the prompt: [~]. ~ is short for your home folder. Your account on the server has one home folder. Everything is under that.

Check out the output of the ls command again. Things in blue are folders. So I have a folder called "logs", and bunch of others.

What if I want to see the files in the logs folder? I can tell the terminal to change the current folder, from my home folder to logs:

cd logs

cd stands for "change directory."

Then I can get a list of files again:


Here's what I got:

Contents of the logs folder

Look at the prompt:


The current folder is Home > logs, so you're seeing the files in that folder.

(The files are in red, because they have special security permissions. Not relevant here.)

Now, to get back to the home folder, I would type:

cd ..

".." means "go up a level."

Try it yourself. ls in your home folder, pick a folder (blue text in my terminal, usually ends in /), cd into it, ls again, then cd back up.


  • Use the terminal to run programs on your server. Start the terminal from cPanel.

  • The terminal prompt shows you the current folder.

  • ls to show the files in the current folder.

  • cd folder-name changes the current folder.

  • cd .. goes up a level, to the parent folder.

You'll use the terminal to set up the program files for Drupal and Skilling.


Section contents

Server folder