How to send email notifications for comments in Drupal 7 with actions & triggers (or the Rules module)

Rules module logo Do you have a Drupal 7 web site? Do you want to get an email when someone comments, so you don't have to check your site all the time? Don't panic! Here's how you do it.

You don't need to install any new modules to do this in Drupal 7. All that's needed is a little configuring and to copy and paste in a short bit of code.

Update: Both the easiest & most powerful way to get these notification emails (in Drupal 6 or 7) is to install and configure the Rules Module. NodeOne has a great set of video tutorials on their site explaining how to use the Rules module. I've also put example code for a Rules-based email notification in the comments to this post for both Drupal 6 and Drupal 7


Step 1: Getting started

Go to the Modules page, and make sure that you enable the Trigger module (at Modules > Trigger) and turn on Clean URLs (at Administer > Configuration > Search and metadata). These are core modules/settings in Drupal 7, so you don't have to install them, just turn them on.

enabled checkbox for Trigger on the Modules pagelocation of Clean URLs in administrative interface

Step 2: Taking action

Your next step will be to create an action, so that drupal can perform it when a comment is saved.

Go to Configuration > System > Actions.

Actions link shown on Configuration page

On the Actions page, choose the dropdown for Create an Advanced Action at the bottom of the page, and click on Send email and then Create.

create an advanced action dropdown with Send email highlighted

On the Configure an advanced action page, fill in the first 3 fields, as in these examples:

  • Label: Send an email notification to site owner upon comment save
  • Recipient:
  • Subject: New Comment at

The trickiest part of this entire endeavor is filling in the Message field, but here's some easy sample code that you could just copy and paste in:
### Node
[comment:node:title] at: [site:url]node/[comment:node:nid]#comment-[comment:cid]

### Comment

### Review

Those bits of code within square brackets are called tokens. Tokens are placeholders, little bits of code that represent commonly-used values. To find more tokens in Drupal 7, you must have two modules enabled. First, turn on the core Help module, which you should have enabled anyway...because it's helpful.  However, I find it bizarre that, even though you're only using tokens included in the Core, you must still install and turn on the Token module, too.

Only then can you point your web browser to the Help > Token page at and get a list of all the tokens you can choose among.

Step 3: Triggering your action

At the top of the page, click on the Triggers link to go to the next step. This page can also be found underneath Structure > Triggers.

Triggers link shown at top of Actions page

Be sure to choose the comments tab on the Triggers page.

Comments tab shown at top of Triggers page

You have a number of choices, but since mine is a solo blog, Trigger: After saving a new comment seems most appropriate. Click on the dropdown instructing you to Choose an action and click underneath system on the name of the Action (Send an email notification to site owner upon comment save) you created in Step 2 and then click Assign.

action selected on dropdown for Trigger: After saving a new comment

successfully assigned action to trigger

Step 4: Testing your comments form

Now, as far as you know, your web site is set up to email you when someone saves a comment.  To be absolutely certain that your new action and trigger are working correctly, you need to test it.

Browse to any page, article, or blog post on your site and post a comment.

Check your email at the address you chose in step 2. Does this email give you the information you expected?

Remember to delete your test comment off of your site.

For more information



Token problem

I've made an action which sends an email to the administrator. The trigger is 'when a new user account signed in'.
In that email are tokens like [user:name] and [user:mail], they work very well. I use also tokens such as [current-user:field_address], they are added (non-existing) fields and they don't work.
Does anybody has any idea how I get this working?

Hans van den Berk

This works!

Thanx a lot for this tutorial. It was all I needed to complete the guestbook.
Also took a look at html email format but that looks like a nightmare so plain text will do for the intended purpose.


Combine this with user roles

Most of us have noticed by now that spammers are using human comment factories to get past captcha rules.
What I have found to be effective is to have a role called 'Reviewed User' and only allow this role to post comments or content without moderation.
In the case of content, I allow authenticated users to post, but the triggered rule will automatically unpublish any new content unless the user has the 'Reviewed User' role, as well as send an email to me.
I also have a rule that automatically applies the 'Reviewed User' role to the content/comment author when I publish the item. If I don't publish it, I block the user, delete all of that user's content, and report them as a spammer using spambot.
This approach has greatly reduced the headache I was starting to get.


Very good!

got me running fast!



Thanks for the article. It's very interesting this option to manage comments on drupal sites.

Yoni Steingiesser


Thank you! This was exactly what I needed. You are a life saver. Thank you for putting this up!


Best Drupal "How To" I've

Best Drupal "How To" I've read yet - Woohoo - thanks



Thank you Adelle, really clean explanation and working fine in Drupal 7!


need help

i need to add the comment form on my drupal 7 in an attractive way help me i have just simple form for the comments