Integrating a third-party application

We’ve already written our own django CMS plugins and apps, but now we want to extend our CMS with a third-party application, Aldryn News & Blog.

Basic installation

First, we need to install the app into our virtual environment from PyPI:

pip install aldryn-newsblog

Django settings


Add the application and any of its requirements that are not there already to INSTALLED_APPS in Some will be already present; it’s up to you to check them because you need to avoid duplication:

# you will probably need to add:

# and you will probably find the following already listed:


One of the dependencies is Django Filer. It provides a special feature that allows more sophisticated image cropping. For this to work it needs its own thumbnail processor (filer.thumbnail_processors.scale_and_crop_with_subject_location) to be listed in in place of easy_thumbnails.processors.scale_and_crop:

     # 'easy_thumbnails.processors.scale_and_crop',  # disable this one


Aldryn News & Blog uses aldryn-boilerplates to provide multiple sets of templates and static files for different CSS frameworks. We’re using the Bootstrap 3 in this tutorial, so let’s choose bootstrap3 by adding the setting:



Add the boilerplates static files finder to STATICFILES_FINDERS, immediately before django.contrib.staticfiles.finders.AppDirectoriesFinder:


If STATICFILES_FINDERS is not defined in your just copy and paste the code above.



In Django 1.8, the TEMPLATE_LOADERS and TEMPLATE_CONTEXT_PROCESSORS settings are rolled into the TEMPLATES setting. We’re assuming you’re using Django 1.8 here.

         # ...
         'OPTIONS': {
             'context_processors': [
                 # ...
             'loaders': [
                 # ...

Migrate the database

We’ve added a new application so we need to update our database:

python migrate

Start the server again.

Create a new apphooked page

The News & Blog application comes with a django CMS apphook, so add a new django CMS page (call it News), and add the News & Blog application to it just as you did for Polls.

For this application we also need to create and select an Application configuration.

Give this application configuration some settings:

  • Instance namespace: news (this is used for reversing URLs)
  • Application title: News (the name that will represent the application configuration in the admin)
  • Permalink type: choose a format you prefer for news article URLs

Save this application configuration, and make sure it’s selected in Application configurations.

Publish the new page, and you should find the News & Blog application at work there. (Until you actually create any articles, it will simply inform you that there are No items available.)

Add new News & Blog articles

You can add new articles using the admin or the new News menu that now appears in the toolbar when you are on a page belonging to News & Blog.

You can also insert a Latest articles plugin into another page - like all good django CMS applications, Aldryn News & Blog comes with plugins.