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Liip Blog:
Magento 2.0 Release
Nov 19, 2015 @ 09:40:01

On the Liip blog there's a post about the release of Magento 2, the latest and hugely reworked version of the popular eCommerce platform. The post walks you through the installation of this latest update using a pre-configured Vagrant machine.

I’ve downloaded my M2 sample from the official Magento website, there I also found an archive with sample data. For a setup I used a pre-configured Vagrant machine according to the installation guide for Magento server. This installation guide offers two options: easy and advanced. Let’s try the easy way first ;) M2 has an installation wizard, so it is supposed that even a none technically prepared user can install it successfully. And indeed, it looks easy.

He walks through some of the issues he had importing the data during the installation, ultimately, falling back to a command line call to push the large sample data into the platform.

You can find out more about this release and get the latest version over on the Magento website with plenty of information about what's been improved, added and how to get started using this latest version.

tagged: magento2 release install import data ecommerce platform

Link: https://blog.liip.ch/archive/2015/11/18/magento-2-0-release.html

Andrew Embler:
Creating a Z-Ray Plugin for Zend Server 8.5
Jul 22, 2015 @ 11:37:45

In this post to his site Andrew Embler shows you how to create a custom Z-Ray plugin for the Zend Server (v8.5) to show some statistics about requests made to the application.

Zend just released version 8.5 of their Zend Server application server. A major part of this release is the plugin gallery, which provides an App store for Zend Server extensions. These extensions can add application-specific debugging features to the Z-Ray Debugger. We've built one such extension specifically for Concrete5. It didn't take long – just a day or two. That said, there were some bumps in the process, as you're working on a platform for which the documentation hasn't quite caught up yet. With that in mind, I'm going to share my process for building the Concrete5 Z-Ray plugin, in the hopes that it might help someone who is building their own Z-Ray plugin for Zend Server.

The post is pretty comprehensive, sharing all the code you'll need to implement the extension along the way. He's broken it up into sections to help make it a bit more manageable:

  • Create Your Directory
  • Place the deployment.json file in the directory
  • Add Additional Items specified by deployment.json
  • Add the Z-Ray specific Directory
  • Create the Z-Ray PHP Class
  • [Adding] The Logo
  • Basic Panel Details: The Pages Panel
  • Advanced Panel Details: The Blocks Panel

Screenshots also accompany some of the steps showing you what the page output should look like once the files and functionality are in place.

tagged: zray plugin zendserver tutorial application server platform

Link: http://andrewembler.com/2015/07/creating-z-ray-plugin-zend-server-85/

Community News:
Launching Today: The Code Climate Platform
Jun 22, 2015 @ 09:57:56

Code Climate, the popular static code analysis service, has made an announcement that will definitely help make checking your PHP application for quality and security issues easier - the release of the Code Climate Platform. This platform provides, among other things, a command line tool that you can use to run their analysis rules on your own systems.

Today, we’re thrilled to launch the Code Climate Platform − the first open, extensible platform for all types of static analysis. [...] What does this mean exactly? First, we’re open sourcing our analysis tools, including the engines and algorithms we use to evaluate code. We’re also enabling anyone to write static analysis engines that run on our servers by following a simple specification. [...] Finally, using our new Code Climate CLI, you can now run any Code Climate-compatible static analysis on your laptop – for free.

This is a great step forward to helping ensure the overall quality of your codebase and makes it even easier than having to rely on a fully external service for the results. Plus, with the specification you can write rules and customize the checks according to your application or framework of choice. They have a developer program you can register for to find out more information about that.

tagged: codeclimate static analysis tool commandline platform opensource specification developer program

Link: http://blog.codeclimate.com/blog/2015/06/19/code-climate-platform/

SitePoint PHP Blog:
First Look at Platform.sh – a Development and Deployment SaaS
Mar 23, 2015 @ 11:24:36

In this latest post to the SitePoint PHP blog Chris Ward takes a "first look" at the Platform.sh development and deployment service.

Not so long ago, many of us were satisfied handling deployment of our projects by uploading files via FTP to a web server. [...] The old methods for deploying became unstable, unreliable and (generally) untrusted. [...] So was born a new wave of tools, services and workflows designed to simplify the process of deploying complex web applications, along with a plethora of accompanying commercial services. Generally, they offer an integrated toolset for version control, hosting, performance and security at a competitive price. Platform.sh is a newer player on the market, built by the team at Commerce Guys, who are better known for their Drupal eCommerce solutions.

He talks about some of the requirements for using the service (including Drush, the Drupal command line tool) and how to get started with a new project. He shows how to get the codebase with their CLI tool, pushing SQL data up to the instance, and starting in on some development work. He shows how to configure the modules you want to use and adding some additional content to the data. He also covers some of the other features of Platform.sh including: performance and profiling tools and integration with Redis, Solr and the EntityCache/AuthCache tools.

tagged: platformsh drupal deployment development platform saas introduction

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/first-look-platform-sh-development-deployment-saas/

Lorna Mitchell:
5 Reasons to Consider Upgrading Your PHP Platform
Feb 06, 2015 @ 12:04:35

Lorna Mitchell has a new post today with five things that you could gain by upgrading your platform, mostly centered around the changes PHP has made recently.

In recent years, the release cycle of PHP has become much shorter. We now have a much more controlled and well-publicised process of releases, and moving between each version is no longer a leap of faith. The newer versions have HUGE performance improvements, great features, and better security, and the software is free to use. Yet we have a very, very long tail of PHP installations on older versions (around 75% on entirely unsupported versions at this point). Many of the companies I talk to think that upgrading will be pointless and painful, but that's not my experience of migrating PHP projects. Here are a few things you might like to think about or be aware of before you make the decisions that "not broken" is good enough for your applications.

She offers her list of five things, each with a bit of summary and a few links to more information on the topics:

  • Improved Performance
  • Security and Support
  • New Syntax
  • Traits
  • Built In Webserver

She also technically includes another in the list (#6 in the top 5, naturally) talking about the password hashing functionality that's been introduced in recent versions and how much simpler it can make your life.

tagged: upgrade reasons language platform suggestion feature

Link: http://www.lornajane.net/posts/2015/5-reasons-to-consider-upgrading-your-php-platform

The Future of WordPress
Jul 10, 2014 @ 13:14:07

On the Envato blog there's a recent post that covers some of the future of WordPress resulting from some discussions at a recent Future of WordPress panel from the WP Think Tank.

There’s one thing that we can all agree on: the future of WordPress is bright. Outside of this, the ever-passionate WordPress community is a hotbed for debates on where WordPress should go from here. With 22% of websites running on WordPress, a vibrant open-source community, amazing themes and plugins and a developer-friendly mindset, WordPress is stronger today than it has ever been. So what's next?

Their list includes changes touching just about all parts of the application including plenty of UI updates, a continued focus on backwards compatibility a shift towards plugin-driven development. This would allow new features to be installed as plugins when they're ready rather than modifying the core package. There's also some emphasis being put on making it work for "more than just blogging" and push towards more enterprise-level acceptance.

tagged: future wordpress blogging platform enhancement architecture

Link: http://inside.envato.com/the-future-of-wordpress/

Phil Sturgeon:
Heroku and PHP Sitting in a Tree. K.I.S.S.I.N.G
May 12, 2014 @ 09:40:49

In a recent post Phil Sturgeon talks about the recent news from Heroku about their integrated PHP support and some of his own experience in using the new service feature and migrate his blog over.

Heroku was - as far as I remember - the first (mainstream) PaaS on the market. It was Ruby-only but it was that symbol of modern web development at the time, with the whole "slinging code", "getting shit done", make a Git repo and start shipping bro, hack project/agile-til-it-works mindset. [...] Git push your code, its deployed, one-click installs and drag to scale. It sucked that it was always for Ruby, because as I was also doing a lot of work in PHP I obviously wished I could have the same for my other projects.

He walks through some of the "evolution" of the PaaS (platform as a service) market as it related to PHP environments. He talks about other services like PHPFog, Pagodabox and Fortrabbit. The Heroku added true PHP support and he made his move. He goes through the steps he followed to get his blog migrated over and the commands needed to make the push.

tagged: heroku paas platform service history support pyrocms

Link: http://philsturgeon.co.uk/blog/2014/05/heroku-and-php-sitting-in-a-tree

SitePoint PHP Blog:
An Interview with the Appserver.io Crew
Oct 08, 2013 @ 09:57:15

On the SitePoint PHP blog there's a new post interviewing the company behind Appserver.io, an application server written for PHP and in PHP.

What if you could reliably run PHP without Nginx or Apache, but also without relying on its internal server? What if you could do async operations in PHP with true multi threading, fully taking advantage of multi core processors without hacks or a jungle of callbacks? What if you had drag and drop installation support for your PHAR packaged web apps in an environment identical to its production counterpart? Enter Appserver (application server).

They talk with Tim Wagner, Johann "Hans" Zelger and Stefan Wilkommer about the tool and what kinds of features it has to offer PHP developers. There's mention of "servlets", configuration of the platform and the results of some of the benchmarks they've run comparing it to other web servers. There's lots more in the full interview so be sure to check into it if you're intrigued by this interesting addition to the PHP world.

tagged: interview appserverio platform webserver servlet

Link: http://www.sitepoint.com/interview-appserver-io-crew/

Moving to Cloud-Based Web Development
Jul 16, 2013 @ 10:42:07

On PHPMaster.com today there's a new article from Martin Psinas about moving to cloud-based development for your PHP applications (using online editors that can potentially replace your local development tools).

I knew going into this purchase that the Chromebook was designed without a hard drive and is intended more for casual web surfers rather than power users, but that didn’t stop me. I also knew I wanted to take full advantage of the Chromium OS as an on-the-go platform so installing a LAMP-based development environment or tinkering with the system would just defeat the purpose. I decided it was time for change, time for liberation!

He talks about some of the basic concepts behind the move to a cloud-based environment and working with various aspects of development there. He covers things like version control, finding a place to store his code and choosing an IDE. He links to a few options including ShiftEdit, CodeEnvy and Cloud9 (his choice).

tagged: cloud development platform versioncontrol ide

Link: http://phpmaster.com/moving-to-cloud-based-web-development/

5 Reasons Why the Web Platform War is Over: PHP Won with 75% says Google
May 22, 2013 @ 09:06:11

In this new post to the PHPClasses.org blog Manuel Lemos talks some about the recent introduction of PHP into Google's App Engine offerings.

During Google I/O 2013 event a Google manager said PHP runs on 75% of the Web sites. So they decided to finally support PHP as in their AppEngine hosting service. Read this article to understand why this puts an end to years of false claims that PHP was losing market, as well what it means to Web developers using PHP or other languages.

He looks at the App Engine PHP offering and looks at whether or not its a good platform to use for hosting your application. He points out some advantages and disadvantages (including no local file system access and no remote resource access). He also includes five reasons why the "web platform war is over" and why PHP has come out victorious:

  • Google Knows Because They Crawl the Whole Web
  • Google Does Not Influence Web Developers so much
  • Wordpress is the Dominant Blog Platform (not Blogger)
  • Programming Does Not Have to Be Beautiful
  • PHP Detractors Have the Wrong Focus

He admits, though, that PHP may not be dominant forever - it's not perfect, but there will always be a need for something that does what it can do (and does it well).

tagged: google appengine support advantages disadvantages mysql platform war

Link: http://www.phpclasses.org/blog/post/208-5-Reasons-Why-the-Web-Platform-War-is-Over-PHP-Won-with-75-says-Google.html