[development] Install profiles tutorial for Drupal 4.7, Friday 8AM PST

Boris Mann boris at bryght.com
Sun Jun 11 17:58:12 UTC 2006

On 11-Jun-06, at 10:44 AM, Bèr Kessels wrote:

> Op zondag 11 juni 2006 19:16, schreef Jenny Hsueh:
>> be that the sympal solution or something else,
> Yes.
> I am not sure what  Bryght could offer ni this. They developed  
> something too,
> But I remember it is closed still. (?)

No, HostMaster is open source. It is behind some passwords and there  
is a private mailing list. People are at the checking it out phase,  
CivicSpace has been toying with it for some time. We're happy to have  
people check it out (email me), but it does require a fair bit of  
technical expertise -- i.e. you know how to run and work with  
dedicated servers, Apache vhost files, etc.

To save time:
* you need a dedicated server
* you need to have someone that knows Python and PostgreSQL
* it's purpose to mass host Drupal instances (100 or more sites, not  
worth it otherwise)
* it needs lots of documentation

The .install files and installer concepts came out of the work we  
did, much like we worked on multi-site and got it ready for 4.6.  
Kieran and the team at CivicSpace then ran with the idea and ported  
their existing installer code.

The install stuff is the first step that is needed in Drupal core.  
The concept of install profiles (bundling actual module configuration  
and content) is what is needed in 4.8. There is nothing in the CS  
installer code that prevents this.

> I also recall Vlado presenting some really cool apt-get alike  
> dependency
> systems.

He's been working on some dependency stuff in our public SVN (http:// 

> But it seems I either misunderstood Civicspaces installer system  
> when I looked
> and tested it, or that they did not take this approach?
> Can someone from CS explain how they envision to serve the middle  
> tier? How we
> can use their install system in a musltisite hosting? Or wit some  
> 3rd party
> installation and configuration script?

You script however you need. You drive it remotely, keep  
configuration in .install files.

Roughly --
* decide what kind of profile you want to build
* get all the modules, make sure they have .install files
* make an installprofilename.install file that has all the config  
settings (turn blog on and always promote to front page, add 6 fields  
to profile module, etc.)
* done

Want to automate that in some fashion? Build a script of your choice,  
use HostMaster and drop it in a profile directory, etc.

Other concepts -  configure a site, then push a button and it outputs  
installprofilename.install so you can then regenerate the same site  
again. This is something that Adrian has looked at. Needs code.

Hope that helps. There is nothing in the core approach that blocks  
different pieces of automation. CS' "graphical" installer means we  
can have our cake and eat it too -- mass host an install profile in  
an automated fashion, or let people download the install profile and  
install it themselves. Kudos to them for tackling the self install  
issue as well.

Go and ahead and *try* to build some install profiles and/or automate  
installs, then come back and submit patches. Please don't argue about  
an approach until you've tried to build something with it.


Boris Mann
Vancouver 778-896-2747 San Francisco 415-367-3595
SKYPE borismann

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