Drush notes

Notes about Drush version 7.



See my drush installation notes.


To list all available commands:

drush help

Further help for a [command]:

drush help [command]

E.g. drush help cc to view help for the cache-clear (cc) command.

To list commands provided by [module]:

drush --filter=[modules]

E.g. drush --filter=core to view core commands.

Also see the Drush commands reference.

Commands I use often

Or forget often!

Command Shortcut Description
pm-list   List all modules, whether enabled or not
pm-update up Update everything
pm-update [modules] up Update only the given [modules]
update-status ups Get list of available updates
pm-refresh rf Refresh available updates data/cache
l10n-update   Update available translations (l10n_update module required)
l10n-update-refresh   Refresh available translations (110n_update module required)
role-list rls List roles. This can be used to list permissions of a role
features-components fc See all features components i.e. all types of stuff that you can export to a feature
features-export [feature] [components] fe Export components to a feature module
features-diff fd List all feature modules along with their state, to see which ones have changed
features-diff [feature] fd See differences between [feature] module and database
features-revert [feature] fr Update the database to be the same as the feature module
features-update [feature] fu Update the feature module with the latest from the database
–filter=[module]   List available commands for [module]. See the list commands section.
php-script scr Run a PHP script. See running scripts section.



To execute a command for all sites in a multi-site setup, use the @sites flag, e.g:

me@pc ~/clients/foobar/dev/website/drupal $ drush @sites rf
You are about to execute 'rf' non-interactively (--yes forced) on all of the following targets:
Continue?  (y/n): y
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#default >> Refreshing update status information ...
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#default >> Done.
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#foobar-uk  >> Refreshing update status information ...
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#foobar-uk  >> Done.
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#foobar-za  >> Refreshing update status information ...
.home.steph.clients.foobar.dev.website.drupal#foobar-za  >> Done.

As it says, this is non-interactive, so after inputting ‘y’ it will run the command for each site without asking you anything - it will assume an answer of ‘y’ for every question it would have asked in interactive mode.

Note that it is a bit flakey. E.g. When running drush @sites up I’ve noticed that it sometimes fails to run database updates and I’ve had to then run drush @sites updb to make sure the updates were properly made. Best to check your sites’ status report after running any updates.

Running scripts

Drush can run PHP scripts inside a bootstrapped Drupal environment.

E.g. lets say we have this file called pages-by-219.php, which shows the titles of all pages published by user uid 219:


// Load all published pages by uid 219 and show their titles.
$query = new EntityFieldQuery;
$result = $query->entityCondition('entity_type', 'node')
  ->propertyCondition('type', 'page')
  ->propertyCondition('status', 1)
  ->propertyCondition('uid', 219)
$nodes = node_load_multiple(array_keys($result['node']));
print_r(array_map(function ($n) {return $n->title;}, $nodes));

We can run this code via drush:

drush scr pages-by-219.php

With the following output:

    [293] => Toast to Summer
    [294] => What's Cooking Next Door
    [320] => Seafood Sandwich Cakes
    [321] => Meringue Roll with Berries

Features how tos

Export to a non standard destination

If you don’t keep your feature modules in sites/all/modules then you can set a destination with the --destination flag:

drush fe --destination=sites/all/modules/custom_modules/features my_feature [things to export]

Export all roles and their permissions

drush fe --destination=sites/all/modules/custom/features roles_and_permissions user_role:* user_permission:*

Export a role and its permissions

The following command will export all permissions of ‘the role’ in to a feature called the_feature:

drush rls 'the role' --pipe | xargs -L 1 -I {} drush fe the_feature 'user_permission:{}' -y

It works by getting a list of a role’s permissions with the following command…

drush rls 'the role'

…then using xargs to export each permission via this command:

drush fe the_feature user_permission:the permission

Reference: Drush: export permissions of a role

Bugs / gotchas

Don’t use tilde in drush aliases configuration

When you define directory locations in your alias configuration (in ~/.drush/aliases.drushrc.php) use the full expanded path to your home directory e.g. /home/myuser/whatever instead of ~/whatever.

I found that if you use the tilde character (which bash normally interprets as the location of the home directory) then drush won’t work properly.

For example, drush @local sql-conf returned nothing when I used tilde. Without tilde it returned my sql config.

No code updates available

If you get ‘no code updates available’ when running drush up then try the following:

  • Refresh its update status information with drush rf
  • Restart your database server.


Last modified: 03/07/2016 Tags: ,

This website is a personal resource. Nothing here is guaranteed correct or complete, so use at your own risk and try not to delete the Internet. -Stephan

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