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Fred Muya:
Configuring Custom Logging in Laravel 5
May 20, 2015 @ 08:22:36

Fred Muya has posted a guide to his site today showing you how to configure custom logging in your Laravel 5 application. He replaces the default logging methods with an injected Monolog instance.

I recently started working on a Laravel 5 project, and I'd like to share how I set up my custom file logging. I pooled the information below from several sources (acknowledged at the bottom of the article).

He walks through each step you'll need to configure the logging:

  • Overriding the bootstrap ConfigureLogging class (including the code needed)
  • Updating your composer.json to change up the PSR-4 autoloading
  • Modifying the Kernel.php file to update the constructor for the bootstrap (both HTTP and Console)

With these changes in place you can then use the normal "Log" handling Laravel provides and the magic will all happen behind the scenes. He includes two examples of this, one with a simple log string and another with something a bit more complex (and the resulting log output).

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custom logging monolog laravel5 tutorial bootstrap configure

Link: https://blog.muya.co.ke/configure-custom-logging-in-laravel-5/

DigitalOcean Community Blog:
How To Deploy a Basic PHP Application using Ansible on Ubuntu 14.04
May 13, 2015 @ 10:15:16

If you've ever been interested in learning Ansible and how to use it in deploying your PHP applications, you should check out this new tutorial from Stephen Rees-Carter on the DigitalOcean blog. He walks you through the full process for getting the server and application set up and configured just the way you need it (on a Ubuntu server).

This tutorial covers the process of provisioning a basic PHP application using Ansible. The goal at the end of this tutorial is to have your new web server serving a basic PHP application without a single SSH connection or manual command run on the target Droplet. We will be using the Laravel framework as an example PHP application, but these instructions can be easily modified to support other frameworks and applications if you already have your own.

He starts with a list of the things you'll already need installed and things to know including a basic understanding of Ansible and two servers (they use their own Droplets in the examples). From there, they walk you through a seven step process to get the automated deployment up and running:

  • Installing Ansible
  • Installing Required Packages
  • Modifying System Configuration Files
  • Cloning the Git Repository
  • Creating an Application with Composer
  • Updating Environment Variables
  • Configuring Nginx

Some of the steps here are Laravel-specific as mentioned but if you're familiar with the setup of your own application, it's pretty easy to adapt. Each step includes the configuration changes and commands you'll need to complete it.

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deploy ansible digitalocean setup tutorial configure laravel framework

Link: https://www.digitalocean.com/community/tutorials/how-to-deploy-a-basic-php-application-using-ansible-on-ubuntu-14-04

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Getting Started with eZ Platform on Vagrant
May 13, 2015 @ 09:54:48

The SitePoint PHP blog has a new post about getting eZ platform set up and running on a Vagrant VM relatively painlessly. eZ Publish (and the newer eZ Platform) are a content management system aimed at the digital marketing space.

Last year, I had a somewhat negative experience with installing eZ Publish on a Vagrant box. Since then, they've significantly improved both the software and the VM-friendliness by, well, flat out removing the legacy stack. The VM setup we'll be using in this tutorial comes from the labs of NetGen and the mind of @vranac, and is followed by the installation procedure on our very own Homestead Improved modified by yours truly.

Author Bruno Skvorc walks you through the entire process, using Vranac (Vagrant, Anisble and VirtualBox) to get the VM instance set up and running. He then shows how to clone the latest eZ installation and build the demo application. He follows this with the instructions on getting the same setup running on a Homestead Improved instance, requiring a few more steps but it can be a bit faster overall. He finishes off the post by mentioning an upcoming event, PHPSummerCamp, a conference that will include sessions and in-depth looks at the eZ Publish and Platform functionality (happening in Croatia in August).

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ezplatform introduction vagrant homestead improved install configure

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/getting-started-ez-platform-vagrant/

Gary Hockin:
Debugging PHP Command Line (with PHPStorm and XDebug)
May 07, 2015 @ 11:47:09

Gary Hockin has a recent post showing how you can debug PHP HTTP requests from the command line using PHPStorm and XDebug. These instructions aren't specific to PHPStorm, however. They can be used in any IDE/editor that supports remote XDebug connections.

At PHP North West I had huge difficulties configuring Xdebug and both my PHP and PHP Storm so they play nice in a CLI environment. So here, for others and almost certainly my future self, is how to do it.

He goes through each step of the setup process assuming that you already have the necessary software installed. He shows how to configure XDebug for remote debugging in the ini configuration, setting up PHPStorm to receive the connection and, finally, adding the "XDEBUG_CONFIG" environment variable to tell PHP to relay the requests back to your waiting IDE.

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remote debugging phpstorm commandline xdebug configure setup environment

Link: http://blog.hock.in/2015/05/04/debugging-php-command-line-with-php-storm/

ServerGrove Blog:
Satis building your own Composer repository
April 30, 2015 @ 11:26:53

Composer has definitely made a huge impact on how PHP packages and libraries are integrated into other applications. Sometimes, though, it makes more sense for you to keep your code internal to the organization rather than have it public where Composer can install it. In this case, using some thing like Satis (a self-hosted Packagist-ish server) makes more sense.

We all love Composer. It changed dramatically the way we build PHP applications, based on small and reusable components, but this creates new challenges, especially when we have a single point of failure (SPO). With Satis, the deployment process can be made robust by adding redundancy in all potential SPOFs (Packagist and GitHub). Let's see how it works.

They start with a brief look at how Composer works for those not familiar, making the connection with Packagist and ultimately the public repository. In the context of the "single point of failure" they talk about Packagist being down and it preventing the install (or deployment!) of your application. Satis is prefect to help prevent this. The article then shows how to install Satis (via Composer, naturally) and how to set up the configuration file to define the repositories. The server is then built and can be run using the built-in PHP server on the port of your choice. They include a screenshot of the end result and a quick example of how to use it via your project's Composer configuration.

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Link: http://blog.servergrove.com/2015/04/29/satis-building-composer-repository/

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Inspecting PHP Code Quality with Scrutinizer
April 29, 2015 @ 11:24:24

The SitePoint PHP blog has a recent tutorial showing you how to use the Scrutinizer service to evaluate the quality and "pain points" in your PHP code, be it a library or full application.

We've gone through a decent number of tutorials about code quality, inspections, auto-build systems and so on here at SitePoint. [...] In this article, we'll take a look at Scrutinizer CI - a continuous integration tool that's quite expensive and closed to private projects, but very handy for public ones.

He starts with a quick comparison of Scrutinizer versus (and really plus) the popular CI service Travis CI. He then walks you through the setup of Scrutinizer to evaluate your application automatically when code is pushed to GitHub. He then gets into the configuration options the service provides including filters, specific checks to evaluate and other tools to execute in the evaluation build. The article then gets into examples of the reports that are provided and a bit of detail about what each view provides. There's also options to hide certain errors that you know aren't actually problems and the "follow up" links it provides for the issues you may not understand.

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inspect code quality scrutinizer tutorial setup configure

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/inspecting-php-code-quality-scrutinizer/

Alejandro Celaya:
Composer advanced concepts
April 28, 2015 @ 11:42:34

Alejandro Celaya has shared some advanced concepts when using Composer that you may or may not know this popular tool could do.

Composer is The Tool in any modern PHP project. Nowadays I can't imagine to work without it. It is much more powerful than some people think, easily solving the integration of third party components in our projects, but there are some advanced features that are less known. I'm going to try to explain some of the best practices and mechanisms bundled with composer.

His list of more advanced techniques and concepts includes:

  • Globally installing composer
  • Create the composer.json file (with composer init)
  • Production environments (and flags to customize the installation)
  • Executing CLI scripts

There's several more items in his list and each includes a description of the feature/practice and commands or code where appropriate.

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composer advanced concept practice install configure tutorial

Link: http://blog.alejandrocelaya.com/2015/04/25/composer-advanced-concepts/

Mike Bronner:
How To Install PHPCI in Homestead
April 10, 2015 @ 08:54:19

Mike Bronner has a new post on Medium.com about installing PHPCI on a Laravel Homestead instance and have it able to execute your builds.

PHPCI is a nifty little swiss-army-knife for your development toolbox. [...] It will monitor your source repositories for changes, and trigger a new build when it sees activity. Then it will let you know if anything went wrong or can be improved. This comes in handy to improve your code quality and minimize errors and issues down the road. In the following section we'll go through the process of installing PHPCI in Homestead.

He goes through the full process of getting the necessary software installed and all of the commands you'll need to:

  • Adding the PHPCI database
  • Clone the PHPCI code
  • Configure the PHPCI install
  • Set up the cron to run automatic builds
  • Configure MySQL
  • Set up the Homestead instance for the new PHPCI site

Check out the full post for more details.

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homestead laravel phpci setup configure install tutorial commands

Link: https://medium.com/@genealabs/how-to-install-phpci-in-homestead-5ee0b022e8be

NetTuts.com:
Using HHVM With WordPress
March 31, 2015 @ 12:11:03

On the NetTuts.com site today they've posted a new tutorial showing you how you can use WordPress with HHVM now that they're 100% compatible.

Over the past few months HHVM has taken the PHP community by storm. Since WordPress 3.9 was released, HHVM is now 100% compatible with WordPress.

Unfortunately, HHVM is not quite ready for use in production in self-hosted environments. In my experience, HHVM crashes about once per day, which makes it not viable for a site where high availability is important. Recently, WP Engine has released project Mercury which seamlessly allows HHVM to gracefully fail by falling back to PHP 5.5 when it fails. In this article, we're going to install HHVM on an Ubuntu server running the latest LTS release, 14.04.

They walk you through the full process including:

  • installing MySQL
  • Installing Nginx
  • Installing HHVM
  • Setting up and configuring them all to play nicely with WordPress

It's a pretty short article and doesn't get into the specifics of the WordPress setup steps past ensuring it's working with HHVM but it does give a good starting place.

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hhvm wordpress setup tutorial configure install ubuntu

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/articles/using-hhvm-with-wordpress--cms-21596

Mike Bronner:
Run #AllTheCommands Outside of Homestead
March 04, 2015 @ 10:02:49

In this new post Mike Bronner shows you how to get the latest PHP5 and Mcrypt versions installed on OS X Yosemite to make ti easier on developers needing to run commands outside of Homestead.

Laravel Homestead has brought virtual machines for web development to the mainstream PHP developer: it makes setting up a development stack similar to XAMP extremely simple. [...] However, one of the drawbacks so far has been that you always needed to run Laravel Artisan commands from within homestead, as they depending on MCrypt being installed. [...] The accepted solution thus far has been to install newer versions of PHP alongside Apple's version using Homebrew or MacPorts. [...] However, there's another method I came across while research some non-related issues: install the latest version of PHP from a binary that includes the MCrypt extension.

He walks you through the complete process (well, except for getting Homestead - that needs to already be there) complete with each command you'll need. You'll need to be familiar with the command line to make this all happen and know how to edit configuration files. If all goes well, the "artisan" command will work correctly and no errors will happen during the compile. He also includes a fix you'll need to put in to get the database configuration working from outside Homestead too.

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laravel homestead command artisan mcrypt install configure database

Link: https://medium.com/@genealabs/run-allthecommands-outside-of-homestead-e2fc8d05251f


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