How to Install and use Panels for Drupal
Learn how to use Panels to make custom layout pages
The Panels project for Drupal allows you to easily create customized layouts for your website and then use its drag-and-drop functionality to rearrange the layout, add and remove content and different page elements to it. You can download it from the official Panels project page.
Install Panels in your Drupal site
You can install Panels as any other Drupal module. For detailed information on how to do that, please refer to our tutorial on how to install Drupal modules.
However, there are few required modules that you need to install and enable the cTools module to your site before you can add Panels.
Create a custom layout page
Once you have Panels installed, you can have start creating a new type of content. Once you go to Content -> Add Content, you can now select Panel as an option.
Next, you can choose one of the pre-set layout types or Builders -> Flexible to make your own layout. We will do the second for the purpose of this tutorial.
Now, select a title for that page, enable it's menu item and click the Save at the bottom of the page.
Next, you need to add the actual content of your page. To do this, click on the Panel content -> Gearbox icon in the panel -> Add content
On this screen, select the New custom content option. The possibilities here are endless but we will try to do the most basic page with Panels so you get the idea. Once the module logic becomes clear to you, you will be able to make amazing things with it.
Simply fill in the Title and Administrative title fields and then the actual content of your page and hit Finish.
Now that you have a page, you can edit the layout. Go to the Panel layout tab and select for example a 2-column layout from the available ones. Then, click Next to proceed.
You can now see the new layout of this page. Click Save to proceed.
Now, you can go back to Panel content and you will see two content columns instead of one. Add to them whatever you want - widgets, menus, content, etc. Once done, hit Save.
Now, navigate to the new page you've just created and you will see the new layout filled in with the content you created and an advanced search widget we've added for the purpose of this tutorial.