I have a dev site with many modules. I have another dev site on a different server that I'd like to populate with the same modules. I can zip 'em up and move the file, or use rsync, but I wanted to see if drush-make would do it faster.

I can create only modules without core using: "drush make --no-core makefile.make" within the module directory but this creates the sites/all/modules directory hierarchy.

How can you use drush make to just build the modules in the modules directory without that structure?

1 Answer 1


If you run drush make --contrib-destination=sites/mysite, then modules will be placed in sites/mysite/modules. rsync is going to be faster than Drush make. (Edit: This speed comparison presumes roughly equal transfer speeds between the endpoints. I can see how make might be faster if you have a fast connection from the target to d.o, but a slow connection between the source and the target.)

If you want to create a makefile for an existing site, you may use drush generate-makefile, or build a whole installation profile with drush generate-profile.

  • That didn't work. As a test I made a directory, test_drush, in the site root and put the makefile in it. The command: 'drush make --no-core --contrib-destination=all/modules makefile.make' still creates that hierarchy in that directory. If the hierarchy test_drush/all/modules already exists, it ends up like this, no matter how I try it: test_drush/all/modules/modules/module_xyz, even if I have this to start: test_drush/all, and no modules sub-directory. I think rsync would be really slow from my pc as my upload speed is poor. Rsync is fast as a file sync if the files already exist.
    – Jeff
    Oct 14, 2012 at 3:51
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    I am unclear as to why you are trying to put your modules at test_drush/all/modules. If you specify sites/mysite, then the target will be sites/all/modules, so it is expected that --contrib-destination=all/modules would give you all/modules/modules. Did you try --contrib-destination=all? Oct 14, 2012 at 4:46
  • I was just testing the results of drush make because I didn't want to screw up the file structure if it failed. I punted and used rsync. Maybe what you suggested would work - I'll try it again later. Thanks!
    – Jeff
    Oct 15, 2012 at 3:56
  • It's a good idea to run drush make on an empty site, especially when testing; then you can just blow away the whole thing after the test. It would also make a better test if you make the modules install at their final intended destination (e.g. sites/all/modules). Oct 15, 2012 at 4:18

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