Category Archives: Linux

Moving to VPS hosting and dealing with email, Part 2

A while back I wrote a post about the dilemma of moving away from shared hosting to VPS (unmanaged) hosting and dealing with domain-specific email addresses.

I’ve been migrating a number of web sites to a “droplet” with Digital Ocean.

There are many benefits to this:

  • Complete control over the environment – pick your own Linux distro,  db engine, web server engine, PHP version, etc.
  • Cost – For $10 on Digital Ocean, you get more RAM, CPU and storage than for most VPS servers for $30 or more.
  • Flexibility – at Digital Ocean, you can spin up new “droplets” in about a minute, using a snapshot of a current droplet if you need to scale, etc.

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Upgrading to PHP 5.4 on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

File this under “mostly for my own benefit”, since I often forget how I accomplished something when I need to go back and do it again.

As of March 15, 2013, PHP 5.3.x will only receive “critical fixes” and people are encouraged to upgrade to 5.4 or 5.5. And sometime in 2014, 5.3.x will not longer be supported at all. All of the Linux servers I’m working on now are running Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, which currently provides PHP 5.3.10, so I decided to look into what it takes to update to 5.4.x on these boxes.

It’s simple…
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Simple Vagrant config for Laravel updated

Though Vagrant (at least with VirtualBox) appears to be semi-broken at the moment under Mavericks, I’ve updated my simple vagrant config for developing with Laravel as requirements keep growing for different projects: Github

By the way, the temporary fix for the vagrant under Mavericks seems to be running the following:

sudo /Library/StartupItems/VirtualBox/VirtualBox restart

Credit: http://www.stumiller.me/fixing-vagrant-osx-mavericks-update/

My “toolbox” re-visited

Every developer’s toolbox changes and evolves over time, even the old Reluctant Developer’s. In fact, I go through periods where I spend way too much time trying to find the next app that’s going to get me over the hump from hack to rock star. I haven’t found it yet because it doesn’t exist, but it’s still interesting exchanging some of the tools in the toolbox now and then, and sometimes finding that app that really makes a difference in one’s workflow.

So here’s a list of what I’m using now, along with a brief (sometimes very brief) explanation of “why”:

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Thoughts on Vagrant

I’ve been making a play to get current and stay current with today’s web dev technologies, trends, etc.

It’s not easy. Things are moving fast and I was a bit behind to begin with.

Some of the tools that developers on the cutting edge are pushing appear to be a little abstract relative to what I’m actually working on right now or to my current workflow. One of these tools is Vagrant. Don’t worry, I do get it. Dev environments should match Prod and Vagrant makes it much easier to accomplish. But as a single developer who doesn’t need new environments that often, do I really want to spend time learning about Vagrant, along with Chef and/or Puppet just to prop up the occasional new environment when my current OS X/MAMP Pro dev environment really hasn’t caused me any problems to date? (actually, I did have an issue with case-sensitivity and class names, but not a big deal.)

Again, my use-case is currently limited (single developer, very few new environments, content with MAMP). And I don’t really want to take the time right now to learn Chef or Puppet. But if I can make it super simple, and considering the prospect of developing an app and packaging it up with a Vagrantfile and including it in a repo – all ready to go (I haven’t really seen this, but it sounds cool), then maybe it’s worth looking into. Plus, I’ll have that peace of mind that my Dev and Prod environments are matched.

So I borrowed some code from a couple of different Vagrant/Laravel 4 Github repos and mashed together my own Vagrantfile/boostrap.sh that is very simple and doesn’t require Puppet or Chef to get something up and running that to run a Laravel app. In addition to installing a LAMP environment, it points the default Apache site to the public folder.

Your web app will be available at http::/localhost:8888 and you can access MySQL via an SSH tunnel using the “vagrant” user.

Posted on Github: https://github.com/rufhausen/super-simple-vagrant-laravel