A sub theme relies on its parent. Does that mean I always have to activate both of them?


No it doesn't.

So long as the base theme is present, that's OK.

As an example, if you test the Sky theme on Simplytest.me and go to the admin/appearance page, you'll see that Sky is enabled, but the base theme (AdaptiveTheme) is not.

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  • 3
    Keeping in mind that if you don't have the base theme enabled you will not receive notification updates if there are any for it. – Nigel Waters Sep 19 '13 at 16:18
  • @NigelWaters This is a very good point! Thanks for that, I'd never even thought about that before hangs head in shame – Chapabu Sep 20 '13 at 7:57

In Drupal 8, the base theme is automatically enabled.


When a sub-theme is installed, then its base theme(s) are installed, too.

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