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NetTuts.com:
How to Use New Relic With PHP & WordPress
April 15, 2014 @ 11:43:04

The NetTuts.com Code blog has posted the second part of their series showing how to use the New Relic monitoring service in various kinds of web applications. In the previous article they looked at using it in a Ruby application, but in this new post it's all about PHP.

Today, we will look at how to monitor a PHP application using New Relic. More specifically, we will set up a basic WordPress installation and get some performance data about it, in the New Relic dashboards. [...] With the PHP version of the agent, the environment is a lot more important, as the agent is installed and lives on the box where the application will be deployed, rather than being part of any particular app.

They use an EC2 instance for their example, but the steps can be applied on other systems. They help you get the needed software installed, validate they're correctly configured and do a basic setup of WordPress. Next up is the steps to install the New Relic "newrelic-php5" software and get it fully installed. They also include the updates you'll need to make to your Apache configuration to configure the New Relic instance and how to keep the agent up to date.

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newrelic wordpress tutorial configure install

Link: http://code.tutsplus.com/tutorials/how-to-use-new-relic-with-php-wordpress--cms-20465

Zumba Engineering Blog:
Enforce code standards with composer, git hooks, and phpcs
April 15, 2014 @ 09:13:48

The Zumba Engineering blog has a new post looking at a way you can control code quality and standards with the help of Composer, git hooks and the PHP Code Sniffer (phpcs) tools.

Maintaining code quality on projects where there are many developers contributing is a tough assignment. How many times have you tried to contribute to an open-source project only to find the maintainer rejecting your pull request on the grounds of some invisible coding standard? [...] Luckily there are tools that can assist maintainers. In this post, I'll be going over how to use composer, git hooks, and phpcs to enforce code quality rules.

These three technologies are combined together to make a more seamless experience for the developer while keeping the code quality high. Their method makes use of the "scripts" (post-install-cmd) feature of Composer to, after the installation of all packages, set up a git hook script that will run the phpcs checks on pre-commit. It's a pretty simple shell script that kicks back any errors it might find before the user can commit their changes.

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code standards composer git hook phpcs codesniffer install precommit

Link: http://engineering.zumba.com/2014/04/14/control-code-quality

Stephan Hochdörfer:
Silex running on HHVM
April 09, 2014 @ 09:14:12

Stephan Hochdörfer has a quick new post to his site today showing how he was able to setup a Silex-based application to run on the HHVM (HipHopVM) from Facebook.

First of all I assume you already got HHVM running with nginx. If this is not the case feel free to follow these steps to get everything up and running. To install Silex we will use Composer, so let`s install all the needed requirements and Composer itself.

He includes all the commands you'll need to get the Composer dependencies installed (curl, git, unzip) and to pull it down and move it to the right location post-install. He adds a line to his ".bashrc" to enable it for HHVM and creates the sample "composer.json" for the Silex install. Finally, he includes the updates to make to the nginx configuration to handle the needed redirects to the Silex front controller.

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hhvm silex install configure nginx tutorial framework

Link: http://blog.bitexpert.de/blog/silex-running-on-hhvm/

SitePoint Web Blog:
HTTPS Basics
April 02, 2014 @ 09:06:08

If you're relatively new to web development, you might not know exactly what kinds of benefits that using an HTTPS connection might provide. In this new article from the SitePoint PHP blog, Mufleeh Sadique covers some of the basics of HTTPS and gives some reasons why to "go HTTPS" in your applications.

Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure or Hypertext Transfer Protocol over SSL is used for secure communication over a network, or perhaps more importantly - over the Internet. You would see https:// in the URI and a lock icon in the browser when you access a page that uses HTTPS. [...] If you ever wondered whether and how to go HTTPS with your website, we'll attempt to clear this up in this article by briefly describing what HTTPS is about, and why and how to implement it.

He's broken the rest of the article up into a few different sections. The first answers the question "why HTTPS" with a few reasons including the most important - encrypted communication. In the second section, he starts showing you how to "go HTTPS" using a self-signed certificate to start. With the certificate installed, he moves into the last part, ensuring your application is always using the HTTPS version and redirecting anything else.

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https introduction why how selfsigned certificate install configure

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/https-basics

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Self-hosted Free Invoicing App - FusionInvoice
March 25, 2014 @ 11:18:53

On the SitePoint PHP blog today Denis Rendler introduces you to FusionInvoice, a self-hosted invoicing and tracking software based on the Laravel framework. One note, it has since been released commercially, but he focuses on the previous, freely available version instead.

As a freelancer or a small business your time is better spent creating that next big project or meeting the client's requirements than keeping track of invoices. FusionInvoice is an open-source, self-hosted invoicing web application built for freelancers and small businesses. Although there are quite a few free online invoicing applications, none of them give you the privacy or the flexibility which FusionInvoice provides. Client management, dashboard and reports, recurring invoicing and invoice history are just few of its features.

He starts by listing out some of the other software requirements you'll need to run FusionInvoice and how to verify their settings. He helps you create the database for the app and points you to the installer (web-based) to help get you set up. Each step is documented with screenshots and any other commands you might need along the way. Finally, he shows you how to create a virtual host on your Apache server to handle the redirection to the front controller and set a domain name.

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invoice application fusioninvoice introduction install configure

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/self-hosted-free-invoicing-app-fusioninvoice/

Lorna Mitchell:
Using Composer Without GitIgnoring Vendor/
March 12, 2014 @ 12:45:23

In her latest post Lorna Mitchell looks at a method, when using Composer and git, to fix an issue around subdirectories that are git repositories and git thinking they should be submodules instead.

Recent additions to the joind.in API have introduced some new dependencies so we decided we'd start using Composer to manage these - but we don't want to run composer unsupervised. I'm sure this will bring the rain of "just run composer install, it's probably mostly almost safe" criticism, but actually it's quite tricky to run Composer without excluding vendor/ from source control so I thought I'd share how we did it so that anyone who wants to do so can learn from my experience!

She starts by describing the usual use of Composer - making the "composer.json", running the install and see the "vendor" directory being added. When she tried to check in the dependencies, git gave her an error about wanting them to be submodules. Instead, she figured out a way to add a line to the .gitignore to have it disregard the "vendor/.git" directory, making it work as expected.

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composer vendor install gitignore git

Link: http://www.lornajane.net/posts/2014/using-composer-without-gitignoring

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Installing PHP Extensions on Nitrous.io
March 03, 2014 @ 11:45:22

On the SitePoint PHP blog Bruno Skvorc has posted a new tutorial showing you how to get PHP extensions installed on Nitrous.io, an online environment combining an IDE and PaaS hosting.

Inspired by a comment on my previous article, I realized Nitrous was still a bit too complicated to customize properly. In this tutorial, we'll glide through installing cURL and Phalcon on a Nitrous.io PHP box.

He continues on from his previous article and shows how to detect cURL support and how to build it from the PHP source into an extension. He helps you get the source for the older PHP version Nitrous.io has installed and the commands you'll need to build the extension. With it installed and enabled in the php.ini, he also installs the Phalcon extension.

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nitrousio tutorial install extension curl phalcon compile

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/installing-php-extensions-nitrous-io

Inviqa techPortal:
Speedy Sites Nginx and PHP
February 21, 2014 @ 11:55:17

On the Inviqa techPortal site today they have a new post from Barney Hanlon in his "Speedy Sites" series. This time he looks at using nginx to speed up your PHP applications.

In the previous article in this series, we looked at using Apache with mod_pagespeed to perform on-the-fly enhancements to decrease page load times. Getting an optimised page is only half the battle however; we need to ensure that our backend is doing as little work as possible in order to be highly scalable. In this article, we look at how we can achieve this while improving performance - all with nginx.

He starts with an introduction to nginx for those not familiar with this alternative web server and how it integrates with PHP. He walks you through the installations and configuration of a basic setup and running some benchmarks with siege. Finally, he shows how to enable PHP support on the install via the "php5-fpm" package (FastCGI).

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speed webserver nginx fastcgi fpm install configure tutorial

Link: http://techportal.inviqa.com/2014/02/20/speedy-sites-nginx-and-php/

Nils Adermann:
Composer Replace, Conflict & Forks Explained
February 19, 2014 @ 12:56:41

Nils Adermann has a new post looking at a problem with Composer where it will install a fork of a project rather than the actual project repository. He points out that it is not a security vulnerability in Composer itself, and is usually cause by using the configuration incorrectly.

Recently there has been an increase of cases in which Composer installs a fork of a package instead of the package the user expects. Most frequently these are forks of packages using a "replace" statement in their composer.json. These forks are usually meant for private use only but are still published on Packagist.

The issue stems from the use of "replace" and the publishing of those forked repositories in the Packagist service. "Replace" is meant to define a fork that is still compatible with the original project. The way that Composer handles finding the correct package to install can cause a conflict and the wrong package could end up "winning".

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composer replace fork repository dependency install

Link: http://blog.naderman.de/2014/02/17/replace-conflict-forks-explained

SitePoint PHP Blog:
Getting Started with Laravel on Nitrous.io
February 18, 2014 @ 11:21:45

On the SitePoint PHP blog Bruno Skvorc has a new tutorial showing you how to get started with PHP and Nitrous.io, a service letting you create virtual "boxes" for your development. The tutorial helps you get started with their recently announced PHP support.

On February 12th, Nitrous.IO, the cloud development environment that lets you set up virtual boxes in a flash and use them from whichever platform through their Web IDE, finally added PHP support - something users have been clamoring for. You can read more about it in the announcement, but I figure it's best if we demo by example and get a Laravel app up and running.

He helps you get up and running with an account on Nitrous.io first then includes some screenshots showing how to create a new box. He includes instructions on how to get some basic information about the environment. He helps you install the Zip library Composer needs to work correctly and helps set up a new VirtualHost for the Laravel site. Finally, he includes all the commands you'll need to get Composer installed and the Laravel instance up and running. There's a quick bit at the end showing how to hook the application into a MySQL database too.

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nitrousio tutorial introduction laravel install composer

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/getting-started-laravel-nitrous-io


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