Skin with Themes

Themes are skins for your site that allow you to change the look, feel, and general appearance.

Backdrop may not look like much when you first set it up, but that's because it's intended to be themed. You can add a custom or third-party theme to change the way your site looks.

  1. Download a theme. You can find themes for Backdrop CMS on our website, on GitHub, and various other theme sites.

  2. Extract the files. When you first get the theme, it will appear in a compressed file format such as 'tar.gz'. On Windows, use a program like 7-Zip to extract it. On the Mac, you can use the built-in extractor. To extract the file using the Unix command line:
    tar -zxvf filename.tar.gz
    You should see a list of files extracted into a folder.
  3. Upload the folder. FTP/Copy/SCP/Git pull this extracted folder into the themes directory in your site root.
  4. Read the directions. If the theme includes a documentation file (usually README.md) read it for specific instructions. (There are many themes that require special configuration to function properly.
  5. Enable the theme. Go to Administer > Site building > Themes. Check the 'Enabled' box next to the theme.
  6. Make it the active, default theme. Check the 'default' box to make this the chosen theme for your site. Enabled alone will allow users to select the theme if you have allowed that permission.
  7. Save Click the 'Save Configuration' button at the bottom.

If you run into problems, check the theme's issue queue. If your problem hasn't already been addressed, post a question and someone will try to help you out.