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Note: This project has been deprecated. I am refactoring these docs into a PHPStorm Debugging Guide which is currently a Pull Request.

Wiring up Laravel, LaraDock [Laravel+Docker] and PHPStorm to play nice together complete with remote xdebug'ing as icing on top!


Goal is to put together a sample Laravel project running on LaraDock that can run in a development environment complete with remote debugging.

This project is tested on Docker Native Windows.


This project assumes experience and familiarity with Laravel, LaraDock and PHPStorm before proceeding. The purpose of this project is to focus on how to get these three projects to work together in a PHPStorm development workflow.


Hosts File Editor

  • Hosts File Editor makes it easy to change your hosts file as well as archive multiple versions for easy retrieval.
    • Set laravel to your docker host IP. See Example.



Install Laravel somewhere. See from perspective of LaraDock Installation.

Create a GIT repo

cd laravel new laravel-laradock-phpstorm
git init
git add .
git  commit -m "first commit"
git remote add origin
git push -u origin master


Since we will using LaraDock as a submodule,

# /c/_dk/laravel-laradock-phpstorm
git submodule add
cd laradock

Since we will be hacking a bit on this, need to preserve refactoring with parent repo. So I will remote .git.
rm -rf .git*

Customize workspace

The LaraDock workspace container is based on phusion/baseimage-docker. This image provides support out of the box for SSH although it is not enabled by default.

Note regarding xdebug

Although xdebug is installed, it is not switched on by default. This is so that tools like composer will not be slowed down. PHPStorm is configured to enable xdebug on-demand when running unit tests. See PHPStorm Intepreters example.

Edited laradock/docker-compose.yml

Workspace Utilities Container

  • Set: INSTALL_XDEBUG=true

PHP-FPM Container

  • Set: INSTALL_XDEBUG=true
    • Note: xdebug is installed but disabled until switched on. See: Debug Web Site

NOTE: PHP_IDE_CONFIG="serverName=laravel" must point to a valid Build, Execution, Deployment > Deployment > Name.

  • If your containers are currently running, let's give it a restart. docker-compose up -d mysql nginx

Need to clean house first?

Make sure you are starting with a clean state. For example, do you have other LaraDock containers and images? Here are a few things I use to clean things up.

  • Delete all containers using grep laradock_ on the names, see: Remove all containers based on docker image name. docker ps -a | awk '{ print $1,$2 }' | grep laradock_ | awk '{print $1}' | xargs -I {} docker rm {}

  • Delete all images containing laradock. docker images | awk '{print $1,$2,$3}' | grep laradock_ | awk '{print $3}' | xargs -I {} docker rmi {} Note: This will only delete images that were built with LaraDock, NOT laradock/* which are pulled down by LaraDock such as laradock/workspace, etc. Note: Some may fail with: Error response from daemon: conflict: unable to delete 3f38eaed93df (cannot be forced) - image has dependent child images

  • I added this to my .bashrc to remove orphaned images.

    dclean() {
        processes=`docker ps -q -f status=exited`
        if [ -n "$processes" ]; thend
          docker rm $processes
        images=`docker images -q -f dangling=true`
        if [ -n "$images" ]; then
          docker rmi $images

Let's get a dial-tone with Laravel

# barebones at this point
docker-compose up -d nginx mysql

# run 
docker-compose ps

# Should see:
          Name                        Command             State                     Ports
laradock_mysql_1   mysqld   Up>3306/tcp
laradock_nginx_1            nginx                         Up>443/tcp,>80/tcp
laradock_php-fpm_1          php-fpm                       Up       9000/tcp
laradock_volumes_data_1     true                          Exit 0
laradock_volumes_source_1   true                          Exit 0
laradock_workspace_1        /sbin/my_init                 Up>22/tcp

Let's shell into workspace

Assuming that you are in laradock folder. ssh -i workspace/insecure_id_rsa root@laravel

Cha Ching!!!!


Kitty KiTTY is a fork from version 0.67 of PuTTY.

  • Here are some settings that are working for me:
    • Session
    • Terminal
    • Window
    • WindowAppearance
    • Connection
    • ConnectionData
    • ConnectionSSH
    • ConnectionSSHAuth


  • File/New Project New Project Dialog Box dockerhost was added to etc/hosts and points to Docker Host IP.

    • Create From Existing Sources Yes


  • Here are some settings that work:
    • Settings/BuildDeploymentConnectionMappings

      • Settings/BuildDeploymentConnectionMappings
    • Settings/DeploymentConnection

      • Settings/DeploymentConnection
    • Settings/DeploymentMappings

      • Settings/DeploymentMappings
    • Settings/LangsPHPInterpreters

      • Settings/LangsPHPInterpreters
    • Settings/LangsPHPPHPUnit

      • Settings/LangsPHPPHPUnit
    • Settings/EditRunConfigurations

      • Settings/EditRunConfigurations
    • Settings/LangsPHPServers

      • Settings/LangsPHPServers
    • RemoteHost To switch on this view, go to: Menu/Tools/Deployment/Browse Remote Host.

      • RemoteHost



Run ExampleTest

  • right-click on tests/ExampleTest.php
    • Select: Run 'ExampleTest.php' or Ctrl+Shift+F10.
    • Should pass!! You just ran a remote test via SSH!

Debug ExampleTest

  • Open to edit: tests/ExampleTest.php
  • Add a BreakPoint on line 16: $this->visit('/')
  • right-click on tests/ExampleTest.php
    • Select: Debug 'ExampleTest.php'.
    • Should have stopped at the BreakPoint!! You are now debugging locally against a remote Laravel project via SSH!
    • Remote Test Debugging Success

Debug WebSite

  • In case xDebug is disabled, from the laradock folder run: ./xdebugPhpFpm start.

    • To switch xdebug off, run: ./xdebugPhpFpm stop
  • Start Remote Debugging

    • DebugRemoteOn
  • Open to edit: bootstrap/app.php

  • Add a BreakPoint on line 14: $app = new Illuminate\Foundation\Application(

  • Reload Laravel Site

    • Should have stopped at the BreakPoint!! You are now debugging locally against a remote Laravel project via SSH!
    • Remote Debugging Success


Wiring up Laravel, LaraDock [Laravel+Docker] and PHPStorm to play nice together complete with remote xdebug'ing as icing on top!



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