Decoupling in Drupal: All the Questions You Have, Answered by the Internet

October 22, 2018
decoupling in drupal

I've been interested for some time in this whole idea of decoupling Drupal and decoupled architectures: collecting links, ideas, videos, and anything that I considered useful. Here is my list. I hope you find something useful, maybe not :-).

Question: Decoupling Drupal… Wait, What? Why? When?

In a few words, decoupling is good because:

  • It unleashes cutting edge front-end technologies.
  • This is important because these front-end technologies are constantly accelerating -- CMS’s can’t keep pace.
  • There is also lots of front-end work that does not necessarily need to change when upgrading a CMS.
  • Which all adds up to: less friction between front end and back end.

Question: What is all this hype about?

Everyone seems to be talking decoupling, but what is this really about?

Ok, here is a quick introduction to decoupling:

Here's another one: Decoupling explained:

What is decoupling? According to Dries (from 2018):

Let’s not forget the marketeers: here's a guide for them:

Why is decoupling becoming so popular?

How about an entire ebook on the topic?

Still hungry for more? Lullabot has written a lot on decoupling:

Question: Right, understood, but, when should you decouple?

Our friends at Lullabot give you some clues:

Chromatic shares some ideas: when to do it, why do it, and what are the benefits?

Dries shares his When, Why, and How ideas in this webinar:

Also good to know: What problems you may encounter (true as of September 2018):

It’s also not just about going fully decoupled. Progressive decoupling is a middle ground that can help you benefit from both worlds, while you avoid painful / stressful “all in” kind of transitions.

Here's a great introduction to progressive decoupling from Eastern Standard:

Matt Davis (Mediacurrent), Preston So (Acquia), and John Kennedy (Acquia) discuss the practice behind the theory of progressively decoupled Drupal here:

Question: Ok, you don’t expect me to do the entire job, do you? Show me the tools!

Ok, I have convinced you. What next you say? Well, it would be good to start playing with some code. And no, there are actually a lot of good tools already out there to help you start quickly. For example:





Headless Lightning:

The Vue.js decoupled kit:

Question: Ok, give me some examples

The Polymer REST API toy:

A presentation: React + decoupled Drupal:

A Facebook REST tutorial:

A D8 example:

Question: Wow, just a bit slower please! Give me some tutorials.

Sure. Are you, maybe, into React?

React plus Drupal:

Drupal + React:

Drupal for React developers:


Live coding at Baltimore Drupalcon:

How about something for a Vue.js fan?

Vue.js + decoupled Drupal:

Drupal And Vue.js: Playing Together To Craft Rich Web Experiences:

How to build Single Page Application with Drupal 8 and Vue.js:

Getting data from APIs in Vue.js + axios:

Want a book about Vue.js?

Or, are you more of an Angular person?

Drupal 8 plus Angular:

A video from DrupalCon Baltimore about Drupal and Angular2:

Here's a compilation of links inside a compilations of links… but this contains a lot of Angular references:

Question: I’ve heard that decoupling is not just for the web?

Sure, Alexa, show me some stories:

Question: Ok, what Drupal modules are out there right now?

Commerce flyout:

Decoupled Router:

A plugin to preview your posts:

Decoupled Blocks, a javascript-framework-agnostic, progressive decoupling tool:

Question: What about SEO?

Question: Can I preview my articles in a decoupled architecture?

Question: Do you have something about decoupled commerce?

Question: Ok, let’s be serious: Who is decoupling in 2018/2019 (nearly)?

Well, here are some stories:

The Future of the CMS: Decoupled Architecture:

A DrupalCon Nashville session:

Acquia’s ebook:

Decoupled commerce in React:

And some case studies:

Princess Cruises:

A story about innovation and decoupled architectures:


And some insights into this project:

Wilson's Sporting Goods:

Pac-12 Networks:

State of Georgia:

Notting Hill Genesis:

NBA case:

Lastly, if you are a book person as I am, my colleague and friend Preston So has published a book about decoupling:

That’s all! Happy decoupling! :-)

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