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Exporting views to files to be managed by version control: Drupal 7

The trick to somewhat Drupal 8-esque configuration management in Drupal 7, when it comes to Views, is to make your view defined in the user interface to be defined by a module instead. This is done with hook_views_default_views().

From Michelle Lauer's Views chapter in the Definitive Guide to Drupal 7:

* Implements hook_views_api().
function dgd7glue_views_api() {
  return array(
'api' => '3.0',

* Implements hook_views_default_views().
function dgd7glue_views_default_views() {
$path = './' . drupal_get_path('module', 'dgd7glue') . '/views/*.inc';
$views = array();
  foreach (
glob($path) as $views_filename) {

Now you can paste the export of each view you want to save (go to the view's edit dropdown and select export) into an include file in a views folder in your module. Each file needs to start with the PHP opening tag and end with adding the view to the $views array.

//put export code here
$views[$view->name] = $view;

(Never include the closing ?> in production code.)

Searched words: 
multiple views module export Views 2.x to code save load default views from a directory of files


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